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This Week in IDEA | October 13, 2010

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Access Forum Presentations and Resources Online

The IDEA E-Biz Forum 2010 presentations are now available in PDF format on the Forum Resources page. The Forum presentations are available for everyone to use for informational purposes, but they are best used as a supplemental resource to the live presentations given at the event. Save the date for the 2011 Forum on September 26-28 in St. Louis, MO so that you can maximize our Forum resources.

What 2010 attendees are saying:

  • “The E-Biz Forum brings eBusiness leaders and topics together in an event that is unmatched by any other format. The opportunity to network and discuss the challenges and opportunities facing the industry is extremely valuable.”
  • “IDEA does a great job and has very informative educational sessions.”
  • “Not a Forum goes by that I don't meet someone who I have spoken with or corresponded with and now have developed a better working relationship with because of the personal networking that goes on here. Problems are usually solved on the spot!”
  • “This Forum provided a fabulous opportunity to network with your industry peers and gain industry insight from the manufacturer and distributor points of view.”
  • “This is the third E-Biz Forum that I have attended and I get something new out of each one. The networking opportunities that I get from an event like this allows me to reach companies that I might not have had the chance to otherwise. This is a first-rate program.”
  • “This is a gathering of a great group of people eager to increase their company’s profitability through process transformation.”

Please email if you have additional Forum resources to include on the website.

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Modern Distribution Management Interview: Common Pitfalls with VMI

Analyze & improve processes before automating: ‘Don’t pave the cow path’

Thomas A. Kozak, president of Pan-Pro LLC, presented “10 Ways to Not Benefit from VMI Programs” at the IDEA E-Biz Forum 2010, sharing lessons from his 36 years in supply channel optimization. Modern Distribution Management caught up with him after the Forum to delve deeper into the topic.

The weak economy has led to more companies looking for new ways to improve their bottom lines. Vendor Managed Inventory has been growing in popularity, but according to Kozak, president of Pan-Pro LLC, it is also easy to do wrong. Jenel Stelton-Holtmeier of MDM asked Kozak some questions about how to avoid the common pitfalls:

  • What do you think is the biggest or most common mistake companies make when implementing VMI programs?
  • How difficult is it to get the companies you work with, particularly their executives, to understand that it’s about new processes, not necessarily keeping to old processes?
  • At the E-Biz Forum, you mentioned that several companies approach VMI or SCO from an IT perspective. Could you expand a little bit on how businesses treat VMI as a technical endeavor? How should companies approach it?
  • What ongoing role does IT have?
  • What sort of metrics should be used to measure the effectiveness of a VMI program?

Read Kozak’s responses to these questions and much more in the MDM interview “Common Pitfalls with VMI” and download his Forum presentation from the 2010 Forum Resources page.

Content courtesy of Modern Distribution Management – read more and subscribe at  

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Electrical Marketing Review: E-Biz Forum in Dallas Draws Good Crowd

140-Plus Distributors, Manufacturers and Software Execs Attend E-Biz Forum

Jim Lucy, Chief Editor of Electrical Wholesaling magazine, shares his personal experience from the IDEA E-Biz Forum 2010. He highlights the increase in attendance, the focus on the future and the opening general session featuring Bob Gaylord, president & CEO, IDEA, Benoit Lheureuix, research VP, Gartner and Deke Smith, executive director, buildingSMART. He also highlights the Richard Buzun Award winners Crescent Electric Supply Co. and ERICO.

Download the PDF of the Electrical Marketing article “E-Biz Forum in Dallas Draws Good Crowd.”

Content courtesy of Electrical Marketing – read more and subscribe at  

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New Synchronization Customers

IDEA welcomes one new DAC-certified IDW manufacturer and 18 new IRD CERICOMX® customers. Read more about these companies and how you can begin trading with them electronically to expand your business.

New IDW and DAC Customer

Eiko, of Shawnee, KS, is now providing DAC-certified product information to the IDW Data Synchronization Platform. Eiko has manufactured lighting products since 1978 and has grown to include the automotive, industrial, electrical, electronic, audio/video, photographic and health care industries. With offices located in the United States, Canada, Ireland, Germany, Korea and Taiwan, they sell their product to a global market through thousands of distributors. They utilize the IDW Data Synchronization Platform to synchronize product and pricing information with distributors and take advantage of the Data Audit Certification (DAC) to ensure their data in IDW is clean and error free. Eiko is a proud member of A-D, NAED and NEMA. Find out more at  

New IRD CERICOMX® Customers

IDEA, a 1SYNC Data Pool On-Board Solution (OBS) partner, implements suppliers that subscribe to the 1SYNC data pool using IDEA's IRD CERICOMX® application. IDEA was recently assigned 18 suppliers:

These companies will be trained to use IRD CERICOMX®, an online catalog that suppliers use to register product data with the GS1 Registry® and GDSN via the 1SYNC Data Pool. Suppliers also use this solution to publish product data to demand partners including retailers like Lowe’s and Walmart.

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