The Chairman and Co-Founder of the Supply Chain Finance Community, Michiel Steeman, kicked off the event by raising an important question: are the best supply chains also the best supply chains for the world? He discussed the gap between physical and financial supply chains and the original goal of the SCF Community – to leverage technology and information. Aiming to reduce and eventually close this gap, our event focused then on the three flows of every supply chain: the physical, the informational and the financial flow.
Firstly, our speakers discussed topics of the physical flow such as risk, resilience and its link to working capital. Dale Rogers – professor at Arizona State University and member of our US Board – pointed out the much-needed change in supply chain management and urged us to start the transition. Furthermore, he highlighted the importance of visibility as a key to avoiding supply chain blind spots and potentially reducing risks. Ronald de Boer (Windesheim University) shared his research on supply chain resilience. He raised very relevant points about resilience archetypes and resilience culture, for which he discussed the example of the Tsunami in Fukushima and its significance to the local culture. Our last speaker on the physical flow, Christiaan de Goeij (Windesheim University) gave insights on resilience for smaller companies. He emphasized the danger of redundancy and explored potential resilience strategies beyond it.
Considering the importance of data and technology in improving supply chains, the next part of the event was dedicated to information flow. Maxime Bouillon and Victor van der Hulst representing the Spark! Living Lab delved into the resilience capability of visibility since they see it as the foundation of the other capabilities. Victor discussed the leading principles for data sharing, such as data sovereignty and digitally encoded information. He highlighted the use of blockchain solutions that enable and improve peer-to-peer digital transactions and data sharing and introduced several examples. One of these solutions, TradeCoin, was elaborated on by Maxime Bouillon. He explained the general concept and its benefits to the supply chain.
During the last part of our event, our presenters discussed financial flows. Michiel Steeman and Viktor Elliot (Gothenburg University) raised questions about the high levels of inflation and its implications for supply chain finance. Tim Stekkinger from DSV shared insights on practical aspects of the financial flow and he discussed the role of logistics in closing the SME finance gap. Throughout his presentation, he gave us a peek into the work of DSV and the company’s relation to supply chain finance.
An insightful panel discussion moderated by Michiel Steeman reflected upon the discussed topics bringing together the theme of interconnected flows in supply chains and our panelists, Bart Ras (Windesheim University), Michiel Deurwaarder (Vattenfall), Gerhard Schipp (Frauenhofer IML) and Ernesto Vila (Defactor), shared their views on resilience, blockchain and how supply chains can help counter the climate crisis.
Finally, Luca Gelsomino (SCF Community) concluded the presentations by emphasizing the link between supply chain finance and sustainability, and the importance of integrated thinking in the supply chain.
An intriguing day with thought-provoking presentations winding up this year’s corporate events. Did you miss this event and would like to learn more about these topics? More corporate events are to follow next year in different locations within Europe, the USA and Asia, so make sure to keep an eye on our website and sign up for our Newsletter to be the first one to hear about any upcoming events.