Supply Chain Predictions for 2015

About this time last year, I predicted the hottest topics in the supply chain world for 2014 would be Big Data, robots, drones, same-day delivery, and M2M. Not bad, I’d say! Now, if I could only do as well with my stock market plays, football bets, and the lottery I’d be in much better financial shape.
Those were pretty easy pickings, in retrospect. The topics were all clearly visible on Gartner’s hype cycle by the end of 2013 and there weren’t many negatives out there to impact them.

The only real question was whether Amazon’s push into drone delivery was a marketing ploy. However, throughout 2014 there was an explosion in the application of drones for myriad purposes, so even if your Christmas parcels aren’t dropped on your doorstep by a drone, chances are drones were involved in weather, farming, law enforcement, and many other processes that affect you. The economics related to same-day delivery are still in question, but the market tests and articles kept coming through the year. Big Data and the Internet of Things (IoT) were all over the news, and the use of robots in supply chains and many other situations continued to be newsworthy.

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NYC’s 2nd avenue subway has been in the works a long time


City officials have been talking about a second line on Manhattan’s East Side since the 1920s, and the construction has been delayed so many times that.. ….

For New Yorkers, the Second Avenue Subway is something of a punchline, an accepted local synonym for “when pigs fly.” It’s easy to see why: City officials have been talking about a second line on Manhattan’s East Side since the 1920s, and the construction has been delayed so many times that former man-in-charge Michael Bloomberg says he’s got a 50-50 shot at living to see it open (he’s 72).

The line eventually will run 8.5 miles under Second Avenue from Harlem to the Financial District. New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority says the first phase, from 57th Street to 96th Street, will open in 2016, after nine years and some $4.45 billion. Still, it’s easy to be skeptical of either one of those…

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Let’s Talk About Florida East Coast Railway and the Obama Cuba Policy


The new U.S. policy that may open up trade opportunities with Cuba would make FEC a very attractive stock, because the 351-mile railroad that starts in Jacksonville is the only rail line that connects to the port of Miami. Actually, it makes FEC attractive as a buyout candidate even if it doesn’t go public.
Back when Florida East Coast Industries Inc. was a public company, its stock was always sensitive to hints that trade may be opening up with Cuba. Of course, that never panned out.

Port of Miami Port of Miami

One investment manager who constantly talked up FEC was Thomas Herzfeld of Miami Beach, who runs a mutual fund called the Herzfeld Caribbean Basin Fund.
The Herzfeld fund invests in companies with economic ties throughout the Caribbean, but its particular focus is Cuba. The fund’s ticker symbol is “CUBA.”
Herzfeld began buying shares of FEC in the early 1990s and its…

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Joe Cocker (1944 – 2014)

Joe Cocker, the raspy-voiced British singer known for his frenzied cover of “With a Little Help From My Friends,” the teary ballad “You Are So Beautiful” and a contorted performing style uncannily parodied by John Belushi on “Saturday Night Live,” has died. He was 70. 
His London-based agent, Barrie Marshall, said Cocker died Monday of lung cancer in Colorado, where he has lived for the past two decades. Cocker, an interpreter more than a writer, became a star through his dazzling transformation of the Beatles’ “With a Little Help From My Friends.” Featuring a gospel-styled arrangement and furious call and response between Cocker and the backup singers, the song became a No. 1 hit in England and the highlight of his characteristically manic set at the Woodstock festival in 1969. In a statement Monday, Paul McCartney remembered hearing Cocker’s cover of the song he and John Lennon co-wrote for Ringo Starr and finding it “just mind blowing,” a “soul anthem.” “I was forever grateful for him for doing that,” McCartney said. “I knew him through the years as a good mate, and I was so sad to hear that he had been ill and really sad to hear today that he had passed away.” – See more at:

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Adam Scott replaces Steve Williams with caddie Mike Kerr

The Adam Scott-Steve Williams era is officially over, as the 2013 Masters champion has tapped Mike Kerr to be the permanent replacement for his erstwhile caddie.
“I’m delighted that Mike has accepted my offer and I am confident that he will be a valuable member of my team for 2015 and beyond,” Scott said in a statement on Monday announcing the new hire.
Scott tried out a couple of bagmen after a September separation from Williams, who was Tiger Woods’ long-time looper before their breakup in 2011. Kerr previously caddied for Scott at both the Australian PGA and Australian Open earlier this month and helped his new employer to fifth-place and T2 finishes, respectively.
Scott had an 11-week stint as the world’s top-ranked golfer and finished the 2014 season as No. 3. Kerr, from Zimbabwe, has worked for several PGA and European Tour players, including Ernie Els, Lee Westwood, and Miguel Angel Jimenez.

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Nallian Wins Prestigious Award at the European Venture Summit

Company recognised as one of the

top 25 start-ups

Keerbergen, December 19, 2014 – Nallian, a cloud-based supply chain collaboration platform, announced it was named a winner at the European Venture Contest (EVC) in Düsseldorf, Germany. The EVC is an initiative of the European Venture Summit, Europe’s foremost networking and investment event for high growth technology start-ups, venture capital investors and technology corporations.

Nallian honoured as top 25 European start-up

Each year over 800 start-ups apply to the EVC via regional technology-focussed qualifiers to present their company to top industry experts and network with potential investors. The contest element comes from the selection of companies who continue to an end-of-year major event with more than 100 entrepreneurs and also 100+ venture investors. In June 2014, Nallian was selected by the Benelux Venture Forum which qualified the company to showcase its solution and strategy at the European Venture Summit earlier this month in Düsseldorf.

At the Summit, a top selection committee of renowned investors, corporate representatives and innovation experts assessed the pitches of over 120 pre-selected companies. Nallian was elected as one of the 25 winners. Presenting companies are evaluated on their excellence in innovation, leadership, and growth potential.

Jean Verheyen, CEO and founder of Nallian comments: ‘We are thrilled and honoured to be recognised as a top European start-up by such an international panel of investors and innovation experts. This recognition demonstrates that our belief in our business strategy and growth potential is profound.’

20 companies per week connect to Nallian’s cloud platform

Over the past year, Nallian has experienced a continued acceleration in their market and numerous companies have chosen Nallian’s cloud-based solution to share rich data with trading partners. Currently, an average of 20 companies per week are connecting to Nallian’s platform. The Nallian business model allows easy and quick on-boarding of new partners, limiting integration time to a minimum and thus guaranteeing an immediate return on investment. Nallian’s solution is used in the following industries; manufacturing, logistics, computer equipment, consumer packaged goods, retail/clothing, health & medical and wholesale & distribution.

Nallian connects supply chain business partners in the cloud to enable real-time data sharing and facilitate interactive collaboration. Using social media concepts, Nallian empowers its community members to create private data clouds with trusted contacts, manage all types of data and automate cross-company processes. The Nallian solution guarantees a ‘single version of the truth’, offering higher data quality at all times and a consistent use of accurate data across the supply chain. Nallian delivers ecosystem wide supply chain visibility, higher levels of operational excellence and increased business agility. Visit for more information or connect with us through LinkedIn.

All Aboard for the Polar Express

As you know, we have been talking about the train to Lake Placid and the Adirondack Scenic Railroad a lot.


A blogger we enjoy is Phyllis Zimmerman.  She just published a great blog on a trip a few years ago on the Polar Express.
The Express runs between Utica’s Union Station and “The North Pole,” otherwise known as Holland Patent. At the North Pole, Santa comes aboard and listens to the wish list of every little girl and boy on the way back to Utica.
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Nick Faldo’s an ‘a**hole,’ Ryder Cup stalwart Sam Torrance says

Already had some mouthfuls from the US Ryder Cup, now for the European team:

Nick Faldo “only opens his mouth to change feet,” Sam Torrance says of his “pathetic” eight-time Ryder Cup teammate’s describing Sergio Garcia as “useless.”
Sam Torrance
Sam Torrance

While it has been all Sturm und Drang in the American camp since Team Europe routed the U.S. squad in the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles, there has been nothing but a love fest for captain Paul McGinley and all things Euro since his team’s convincing victory in September.

Turns out, with 2014 Euro vice captain Sam Torrance lashing out at Nick Faldo for calling Sergio Garcia “useless” during the recent competition, the U.S. no longer holds exclusive rights to Ryder Cup disgruntlement.

“To say that right in the middle of the Ryder Cup, what was the a***hole thinking about?” Torrance said in the latest issue of Bunkered magazine. “The reaction in the team room was magnificent. The guys rallied round Garcia.”

Until now, Faldo had provided the only hint of a controversy not aimed at Tom Watson and his charges when he took a swipe at Sergio Garcia. In his role as TV analyst during the competition at Gleneagles, the 2008 European captain off-handedly threw Garcia under the golf cart when he criticized his performance as a member of his team.

Garcia refused to engage in a war of words with Faldo, who led Europe to its only loss since 1999, and the mini-firestorm burned itself out.

Until Torrance stirred the embers by torching his eight-time Ryder Cup teammate.

“Really, it was pathetic from Faldo,” Torrance, who was just warming up, continued. “He’s an a***hole … He just opens his mouth to change feet.”

Torrance termed Garcia one of Europe’s “best team players … an incredible kid, with the heart of a lion,” a terrific guy in the team room, and blasted Faldo for saying otherwise.

“Garcia’s not a team player?” Torrance asked rhetorically. “Have a look in the mirror, pal.”

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