Plug and Play looking for next generation of leading supply chain companies
The world's largest supply chain and logistics technology platform, Plug and Play Supply Chain, is opening applications to start-ups from different growth stages for its Innovation Programme.
Since its launch in March, Plug and Play Supply Chain has partnered with over a dozen of the largest logistics and manufacturing corporations, including Maersk, Ericsson, Union Pacific Railroad, Panasonic, Prologis, Ryder, BASF, DHL, Kansas City Southern, and Swiss Post.
“We are striving for the second cohort to be more diverse than the first one in terms of all metrics including Solution Offering, Technology, Country of Origin, and Target Industry”
Start-ups accepted into the 12-week programme will get access to a number of logistics and manufacturing firms, including all of the programme's partners for potential pilots and investments.
They will also receive office space at Plug and Play's Silicon Valley headquarters, expert mentor curricula, expedited business development, exposure to corporate partners from other Plug and Play's global programmes, and a chance to pitch in front of Silicon Valley's biggest investors at the Summer EXPO.
“Being a part of the Plug and Play Supply Chain and Logistics Innovation Platform gave us a tremendous amount of exposure to Industrial and Logistics companies and VCs across the world," says Ra’ed ElMurib, CEO of Shoof Technologies.
“Through the programme, we were able to develop many strong relationships and partnerships, which will be crucial as we grow and expand.”
Plug and Plays first group of companies covered an expansive market from artificial intelligence solutions for procurement to robotics, ranging from early stage to growth companies.
Plug and Play launched its Supply Chain programme earlier this year earlier this year, with the aim to bring together everyone who can add value to the start-up ecosystem and facilitate innovation in the industry.
Grupo Espinosa: 70 years of constant evolution
Founded in 1952, Grupo Espinosa has been relentlessly supporting the publishing industry with producing more than 100 million copies every year – whether its books, magazines, catalogues or single-order custom prints. No project is big or small for Grupo Espinosa, as the facility can scale up on demand and their turnaround times are highly competitive. Grupo Espinosa works with on-demand digital press or offset press, in paperback with glued softcover binding, PUR softcover binding, stitched paperback binding, binder’s board, hardcover, saddle stitched, Spiral or Wire-O. Equipped with the experience needed for a product to leave the plant ready for distribution, Grupo Espinosa delivers anywhere inside or outside Mexico. Traditionally starting off as a black and white printing press, Grupo Espinosa has experienced transformation first hand – from colour to digital offset printing. Currently, Grupo Espinosa is also looking at making capital investments into audio books to match with the increasing demand.
So how did a seemingly local operation in Latin America become a world-renowned printing facility trusted by hundreds of clients? As Rogelio Tirado, CFO of Grupo Espinosa for the last six years says “It all comes down to our market experience and our dedication to quality”. With nearly 70 years behind them, and located in Mexico City, Grupo Espinosa has two major locations – one spanning 75,000 square metres and the other about 45,000 square metres. Both locations are controlled by a single ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system ensuring speed, consistency and quality of work. Tirado says this isn’t their only competitive advantage. He adds “Our competitive advantage is the relationship we have with customers and the trust they put in us with their intellectual property”. Speaking of trust, global publishing giant Macmillan Education exclusively partners with Grupo Espinosa for their Latin America operations, as part of Macmillan’s decentralized hub strategy. Having a facility that offered the full spectrum of service – from storing digital content to printing and distributing – was one of the major requirements for Macmillan, and Grupo Espinosa was recognized as the leading printing hub for providing this 360 infrastructure. Another factor that has led to success for Grupo Espinosa is the absolute focus on quality and time. The staff are committed to providing the best quality in the best possible time, without causing wastage of resources. Sustainability is a huge factor playing into Grupo Espinosa’s operations, and they’ve created a healthy environment with the sustainable use of paper and energy resources as well as keeping their employees – most of them associated with the organisation for over 10 years – happy. He adds, “In order to be truly successful, you need to be good to the environment, employees, suppliers, and your customers. But most importantly, you need to be sustainable, you need to have proper working conditions, pay proper salaries, proper prices for paper, source the paper from sustainable sources, pay your taxes, basically be a good global corporate citizen and that's probably one of the biggest achievements that we have.”