Search By Topic The Green Supply Chain Distribution Digest
Supply Chain Digest Logo

Category: Global Supply Chain

Supply Chain Network Design Leader LLamasoft Hires Ex-JDA Executive Razat Gaurav as New CEO


Gaurav Sees Big Opportunities to Expand Network Design Customer Base, Build on Advanced Analytics Platform

April 17, 2018
SCDigest Editorial Staff

LLamasoft, which in recent years has come to dominate the global market for supply chain network design software through a combination of superior execution and acquisition of leading competitors, somewhat surprisingly announced former JDA Software executive Razat Gaurav as the new CEO, and new roles for founder and CEO Don Hicks and co-founder and executive vice president Toby Brzoznowski.

Supply Chain Digest Says...

These more tactical applications have the advantage of not requiring major or often any capital investment, and generally have much lower "change management" hurdles.

What do you say?

Click here to send us your comments
Click here to see reader feedback

I say surprising simply because Llamasoft was clearly a supply chain software company on the move, dominating in the past decade the category of supply chain network design. That dominance, as I have written before, came as a result of several factors, including LLamasoft's effort to build a true software solution versus a tool to support consulting services, a strong focus on customer's achieving results, actively promoting the notion of supply chain design as an on-going process, and the lack of investment by a number of its competitors.

Then in recent years, LLamasoft acquired much of the remaining competition, first buying IBM's network design business (the former LogicTools software) and then Euro-focused Barloworld.

So LLamasoft seemed to be a successful and rapidly growing company – an odd time, in a sense, to move the top two executives to different roles in favor of a new CEO. In fact, in 2015, LLamasoft announced it had received a $50 million minority investment from an arm of leading investment banking firm Goldman Sachs that valued the company then at some $250 million – many multiples its revenue at the time.

But Gaurav told SCDigest this week Hicks and the board felt it was time for new leadership to accelerate the growth trajectory.

Most recently, Gaurav was chief revenue officer for JDA Software. He and the company decided to part ways not long after then CEO Bal Dail gave way to new CEO Girish Rishi in October 2017. He had been head of sales for JDA's EMEA business before that, and prior to that role had been head of the very successful JDA and i2 transportation management business for a number of years, among other roles at those companies (JDA acquired i2 in 2008).

In fact, with its recent dominance and strong roster of blue chip customers, I asked Gaurav if maybe there wasn't much growth left in the supply chain design market.

He said there was still plenty of opportunity for growth in two areas.

First, LLamasoft has about 650 customers. A recent company analysis indicated there were 7000 to as many as 10,000 companies – depending on how you categorize enterprises with multiple business units – that could potentially benefit from LLamasoft tools just in North American and Europe. So, that gives LLamasoft a rich target for new customer acquisition.

In addition, Gaurav said even among the current 650 customers, the majority are only leveraging a small number of “scenarios” to analyze and improve their supply chains. LLamasoft believes nearly all of these companies have opportunities to improve operations in other areas through use of the design tools.

And that's related to a major trend, which is companies using network design tools (LLamasoft's solution is called Supply Chain Guru) to address more tactical planning issue, beyond addressing big questions around physical supply chain design. These more tactical applications, ranging from sourcing and flow path optimization to tools that support sales and operations planning (S&OP), have the advantage of not requiring major or often any capital investment, and generally have much lower "change management" hurdles when it comes to execution than do physical network design projects.

(See More Below)



Gaurav is also bullish on the new platform LLamasoft unveiled in 2017 that let's customer leverage the company's extensive library of optimization tools and other "solvers" to build analytic applications that augment existing planning systems at companies.

"Existing planning systems give you a lot dials to turn to fine tune the plans, but are ultimately constrained in how they address problems and opportunities," Gaurav said. That, he added, leads many companies to use spreadsheets or other tools outside the planning systems to improve decision-support.

The LLamasoft analytics platform will provide a more robust and structure environment to answer new supply chain questions or address current questions in new ways while leaving existing planning systems in place, LLamasoft says.

Under the management changes, Don Hicks is now chairman of the board, where he will focus on more strategic issues for the company, including mergers and acquisitions.

As chief strategy officer, Brzoznowski – the main public face for LLamasoft for many years – will still be in the middle of day to day operations, including go-to-market strategies.

"I did my own "due diligence," if you will, before accepting the position here," Gaurav told me. "That analysis showed me the future was very bright for LLamasoft."

Any reaction to the management changes at LLamasoft? Let us know your thoughts at the Feedback section below.


Your Comments/Feedback




Follow Us

Supply Chain Digest news is available via RSS
RSS facebook twitter youtube
bloglines my yahoo
news gator


Subscribe to our insightful weekly newsletter. Get immediate access to premium contents. Its's easy and free
Enter your email below to subscribe:
Join the thousands of supply chain, logistics, technology and marketing professionals who rely on Supply Chain Digest for the best in insight, news, tools, opinion, education and solution.
Home | Subscribe | Advertise | Contact Us | Sitemap | Privacy Policy
© Supply Chain Digest 2006-2019 - All rights reserved