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Panel: Digital Distribution, What is the Right Strategy?

Most, if not all, distributors have started a digital transformation journey. The worrying fact is the majority are just not seeing the return they had planned for and these initiatives are becoming slower and more complex than anticipated. This, combined with unprecedented market disruption and competitive pressures, “The Amazon Effect”, has accelerated the need to show a direct impact on their margins. A panel of distribution experts and champions of change will discuss the challenges and results of focusing transformation around improving a distributors digital capabilities.

About the Speakers:  Erin Cihak is a Director of Consulting Services at Holden Advisors. She has over 10 years of experience in pricing and innovation consulting as well as industry leadership roles in pricing and product. Her focus is on B2B pricing across industries: manufacturing, services, distribution, software and communications. Example project results include: ROI over 500%, 120% increase in profits, and new product pricing, segmentation, and positioning validated in the market. She has an MBA from SMU and a BS in Industrial Engineering from South Dakota School of Mines.

J. Ryan Dismukes is Vice President, Strategy & Continuous Improvement for Kaman Distribution Group (KDG), a $1.2 billion subsidiary of Kaman Corporation.  Mr. Dismukes is a seasoned General Manager and Strategy executive with over 20 years’ experience with expertise in P&L management, mergers & acquisitions, business strategy & planning, and strategic marketing & analytics. In his current role, Mr. Dismukes is responsible KDG’s short and long-term strategic planning process, marketing, revenue and pricing management, business analytics, and continuous improvement training and initiatives. 

Ian Heller is the co-owner, President & COO of Modern Distribution Management, the most trusted resource for market intelligence and industry insight to wholesale distribution executives since 1967. Ian began his distribution career as a truck unloader in a Grainger branch in college. He left that company 15 years later as Marketing Vice President and has held senior executive positions in marketing and eCommerce at GE Capital, Newark Electronics, Corporate Express and most recently as VP Marketing for HD Supply White Cap. Ian also founded Real Results Marketing, a distribution-focused consultancy in Boulder, CO. Ian holds a BA in History from Roosevelt University and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

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