FOCUS 2012 – Supply Chain Innovation Meets Inspiration

Last week, an extraordinary event took place at the beautiful ARIA Resort and Casino – FOCUS 2012. This year’s event reaffirmed FOCUS as the largest supply chain conference in the world. More than 2,000 leading supply chain practitioners converged in Las Vegas for an unforgettable event where information met innovation and inspiration.

On behalf of JDA, I want to thank everyone – especially our sponsors, partners and customers – who helped make FOCUS 2012 the biggest and most successful in JDA’s history. This year’s record-breaking attendance underscores the importance of supply chain innovation and the impact it has on businesses as well as the global economy.

Information

Our 250+ sessions were carefully tailored to provide insight into the latest innovations and trends in supply chain to help businesses build innovative strategies and improve business processes and supply chain approaches to sustain and grow in any environment. What was extraordinary was that many of the sessions were led by JDA customers, including executives from SanDisk Corporation, Coca-Cola Bottling Company, The Clorox Company, Dr Pepper Snapple Group, General Motors, PepsiCo and Lenovo, among others.

These sessions, and many others, reflected the conference’s overall theme “It’s Now. Think New,” helping attendees understand how to tackle what’s impacting their businesses now by applying new approaches to their business challenges. Some of them took a few minutes to share the new ideas they are taking back to their companies.

FOCUS 2012 Interviews

Inspiration

The highlight of this year’s conference was the keynote by former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on The Extraordinary Opportunity for Global Economies. Widely considered to be one of the most influential and powerful people in the world, Dr. Rice reflected upon global events and how they shape our world – including education, democracy, national security and social mobility. One of my favorite quotes from Dr. Rice was “It doesn’t matter where you came from; it matters where you’re going. You can come from humble circumstances and go on to do great things.”

This struck a chord with many attendees, as the following comments from attendees posted to Twitter shows.  What this tells us is that it’s more important to consider what’s happening right now and turn our challenges into new ideas and opportunities that will positively impact and change the course of the business.

  • @ZaidDuwayri: Listening to Dr. Condoleezza Rice speak about global economic shocks of the past decade at #JDAFOCUS12. Pretty awesome!
  • @KimKnickle: #JDAFOCUS12 I wish my daughter was here to listen to Dr. Rice
  • @Lcecere: “My parents taught me to believe that the little girl that could not eat at the WoolWorth’s counter could be Secretary of State.” #JDAFOCUS12
  • @Pbodman319: JDA FOCUS12 is helping and showing us all how we sustain and rebuild our economy
  • @KathleenMallery: Dr. Rice is an amazing presenter, such clarity over outrageously complicated world matters. Thanks @JDASoftware #JDAFOCUS12

Innovation

Hamish Brewer, CEO and President of JDA, opened his keynote with this very important message: “No matter how you look at the world today, whether you see problems or opportunity, one thing is clear: the world around us is demanding change at an ever increasing pace and we must prepare, innovate and execute better than ever or risk being left behind.”

If innovation is at the core of your agenda, then FOCUS was the place to be. Hamish unveiled key innovations that will transform the supply chain industry and move the needle for our customers to meet the challenges head on. Innovation highlights include:

  • JDA’s strategy to transform its business to a market-leading cloud-based business over the next 3-5 years
  • JDA® Assortment 8.0, a merchandising solution that effectively combines consumer purchase preferences, in-depth analytics, complete assortment lifecycle planning, and sizing and pre-pack optimization into one simple, easy-to-use workflow
  • JDA® Customer Engagement Cloud, designed to help retailers profitability drive omni-channel customer loyalty with real-time optimization and supply chain alignment
  • JDA® Shelf-Connected Cloud, a hyper-scalable solution that enables supplier and retailer trading partners to effectively collaborate at the shelf level for improved on-shelf availability, increased competitive advantage, enhanced profitability and optimal promotion and pricing

FOCUS was also a place for people to unwind, have some fun and meet with their industry peers. The event’s most anticipated social event – The Grand Party – was spectacular and had everything from a live band, dancing, to Cirque de Soleil entertainment and games galore.

The bottom line is FOCUS was the place to be this year. If you missed it, join us in Barcelona November 5-8 for FocusConnect 2012, or in Orlando, Fla., May 5-8 next year for FOCUS 2013.

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