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“Technology Is Key to Unlocking Brazil’s Market Potential” and 6 Other Key Learnings from aim10x São Paulo 2023

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Published: Reading time: 9 min
o9 Solutions The Digital Brain Platform
o9 SolutionsThe Digital Brain Platform
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#1: Transform tribal knowledge digitally

#2: Tech unlocks Brazil's market

#3: Integrated planning for success

#4: Burger King's inventory tech

#5: New measures for value

#6: ESG drives growth

#7: Supplier collaboration across tiers


aim10x live São Paulo 2023 has concluded, marking a significant event that brought together a dynamic array of supply chain professionals in one of South America's most vibrant economic hubs. This exclusive event saw attendance from over 100 Global Planning Managers, Directors, and VPs from prominent Brazilian and multinational organizations such as Natura&Co, Burger King, Cargill, and others. It presented a unique opportunity to delve into the complexities and opportunities within Brazil's rapidly evolving market, emphasizing the region's distinctive growth prospects and supply chain challenges.

This gathering in São Paulo highlighted the increasing relevance of advanced planning technology in addressing these unique regional dynamics. The focus was on how such technologies not only drive financial performance but also contribute to sustainable business practices, a critical consideration in Brazil’s diverse and evolving economic landscape.

#1: GenAI will enable the transformation of tribal knowledge into digital assets

Massive interest in Generative AI has left many business leaders eager to leverage the technology. It has also left them with more questions than answers. With many predictions abounding on how the technology will transform supply chain management, co-hosts Stephan de Barse and Gabriel Vasconcellos focused on a practical application—its potential to transform what is known as 'tribal knowledge' — business critical, yet often undocumented and exclusive knowledge within a company — into accessible digital assets. 

This integration of GenAI into the o9 platform, a strategic move by o9 Solutions, is set to revolutionize how businesses operate, making processes like scenario planning, risk assessment, and identifying new opportunities more efficient and automated. This is particularly crucial for maintaining continuity and preserving vital insights within a company, especially in scenarios where key personnel and experienced planners move on from the organization. This advancement is not just about keeping pace with technological evolution, the speakers emphasized. It's about reshaping the very foundation of how businesses plan and make decisions in an increasingly complex and volatile environment.

"By leveraging Generative AI, we aim to transcend reliance on tribal knowledge, ensuring that past data and future indicators converge to provide optimal scenarios, breaking free from dependence on individual expertise."

Stephan de barse profile picture
Stephan de BarseChief Revenue Officer, o9 Solutions

#2: Technology is key to unlocking Brazil’s market potential

In Brazil, a key economic hub in South America, businesses encounter a landscape rich with both opportunities and challenges, particularly in the supply chain sector. Brazil's market is characterized by its vast geographical spread, diverse consumer base, and complex regulatory framework, offering growth potential while presenting logistical and compliance hurdles. This intricate context set the stage for a panel discussion featuring Luciano Siani, Ricardo Nascimbeni, and Gustavo Calzavara, who explored the nuances of Brazil's supply chain environment.

Central to their discussion was the role of technology in overcoming these market-specific challenges. The panelists concurred that harnessing technology is vital for enhancing visibility, agility, and effective decision-making in Brazil's multifaceted supply chain framework. They acknowledged the complexities involved in technology adoption, particularly in managing diverse and unprocessed data. They also emphasized the advantages of technology in easing documentation practices and navigating the regulatory landscape.

The panel also highlighted the critical aspects of digital transformation in Brazil's supply chain. Implementing technology in this context demands a thoughtful, multi-layered strategy that complements existing systems. The importance of digital flexibility was underscored, with solutions like o9 Solutions being noted for their adaptability. Such platforms, capable of integrating with multiple systems and offering real-time insights, are indispensable for businesses in Brazil’s dynamic market. The discussion offered not just an insight into the challenges but also a strategic guide for businesses aiming to excel in Brazil’s distinct supply chain environment.

"Unlocking Brazil's supply chain potential demands a tech-driven mindset, turning complexities into opportunities and data into decisive actions."

Ricardo nascimbeni
Ricardo NascimbeniManaging Director, Agri Supply Chain, South America, Cargill

#3: Integrated planning is critical to Natura&Co’s Supply Chain and Commercial success

In traditional business models, Supply Chain and Commercial teams are often siloed, leading to inefficiencies and lost opportunities. But Natura&Co is charting a different course. By embracing integrated planning, the company is effectively dismantling these silos, enhancing cooperation and streamlining its operations. This approach was highlighted by Luiza Souza, Natura's Commercial Planning Director, where she delved into the Brazilian beauty giant's transformative strategy in planning and decision-making.

Natura & Co is renowned for its dedication to responsible beauty, weaving inclusivity and environmental sustainability into its fundamental business principles. Luiza illuminated the unique aspects of the company's identity and its customer-centric strategy, which heavily relies on direct sales through consultants.

The cornerstone of Natura's business model is its emphasis on integrated planning. This method works in tandem with direct sales, aligning the vast network of consultants with the company’s primary objectives. Integrated planning ensures all business facets, from product development to customer engagement, resonate with Natura’s commitment to inclusivity and sustainability. This comprehensive strategy encompasses supply chain management to sales tactics, equipping consultants with the necessary tools and knowledge for effective customer interactions. As direct sales through consultants are a key revenue stream and a vital customer engagement channel, this integration is crucial.

"At Natura, we've learned that our journey towards success is paved with collaboration. When every person, every department comes together, embraces innovation, and works collectively, that's when our transformational story truly unfolds—uniting efforts for a brighter, more impactful future."

Luiza SouzaCommercial Planning Director, Natura

#4: Burger King uses statistical algorithms to improve inventory management and order accuracy

Quick service restaurants in Brazil face unique logistical challenges, from managing a complex supply chain to ensuring timely delivery and maintaining quality. Luciano Tótola from ZAMP, the company behind Burger King and Popeyes in Brazil, recently unveiled how they are addressing these challenges using advanced planning technologies. By focusing on customer satisfaction and quality, ZAMP sets its sights on becoming a global leader in the restaurant industry.

Central to their strategy is a substantial investment in technology to develop a resilient and agile supply chain. Tótola highlighted the use of advanced planning software such as the o9 platform for demand and supply planning, integrating advanced algorithms to innovate inventory management and improve order accuracy. This approach is crucial for navigating the competitive and fast-paced market in Brazil.

Looking forward, Tótola emphasized ZAMP's commitment to continuous improvement. This encompasses strengthening supplier relationships for greater supply chain visibility, enhancing team skills for technological proficiency, and utilizing these tech advancements to achieve their ambitious objectives. Tótola's insights provide a glimpse into how ZAMP is redefining operational excellence in Brazil's quick service restaurant sector.

"ZAMP's journey toward planning excellence hinges on technology's transformative power, fostering collaboration, and continual evolution to navigate a dynamic market and deliver unparalleled customer experiences."

Luciano tótola
Luciano TótolaHead of Supply Chain and Logistics, ZAMP

#5: Unlocking business value from supply chain transformation requires new measures

When modernizing their supply chains with digital technology, many businesses face challenges that prevent them from getting the full value of their investments. A 2023 survey by PwC found that only 17% of business leaders believe their tech investments in supply chains have fully met expectations. The main issues included needing more time to put these systems in place and unclear goals and leadership. Additionally, a 2021 survey by the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals showed that 41% of professionals see a lack of talent and skills as the biggest hurdle in their digital shift.

This topic was a key discussion in a panel with experts Diego Carlesso from Philips, and Igor Rikalo and Gabriel Vasconcellos from o9 Solutions. They shared essential strategies for companies to successfully navigate these digital transformation challenges.

  • Focus on Input and Output Measures: While financial KPIs are crucial output measures, businesses should also focus on input measures like team dynamics and knowledge utilization.
  • Risk Management in Technology Implementation: Risk plays a significant role in technology adoption. A recommended approach is to manage multiple small-scale initiatives with high potential, rather than investing heavily in a single, large-scale project.
  • Transitioning to a Digital Operating Model: Moving from an analog to a digital operating model requires democratizing insights across different organizational structures and languages, ensuring that information and decisions are accessible company-wide.
  • Adoption Across Levels for Better ROI: As Diego Carlesso noted, investments that see adoption from the base to the C-level yield better ROIs. Igor Rikalo emphasized that without adoption, ROI cannot be achieved.
  • Understanding Partnerships in Digital Transformation: Deep involvement in digital transformation allows companies to truly understand their partnerships.
  • Prioritizing People and Processes: Technology should facilitate people and processes, not replace them. In a volatile business environment, this becomes even more critical.

Embracing Software-Centricity: Companies should adapt to being software-centric, as recommended by Igor, to stay competitive and flexible in the digital age.

"The better ROIs are in the investments where you have adoption from the base to the C-level."

Diego carlesso
Diego CarlessoHead of Finance, Integrated Supply Chain, Philips

#6: ESG is a critical driver for long-term business growth and resilience

Global enterprises are increasingly recognizing that Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) factors go far beyond mere regulatory compliance, becoming central to core business operations. This shift is crucial in an era marked by heightened environmental challenges and a rising demand for corporate responsibility. Ana Abreu, Pre-Sales Director at o9 Solutions, underscored this trend in her presentation on the necessity of embedding ESG and sustainability into business strategies:

  • ESG as a Strategic Imperative: Ana emphasized that with escalating environmental concerns, ESG principles are vital for ethical practices and driving top-line growth, moving beyond being seen as just trends or moral guidelines.
  • Aligning Business Goals with ESG: The importance of aligning ESG objectives with overall business strategies was highlighted, advocating for a seamless integration where sustainability is an integral part of achieving business success.
  • o9 Solutions’ Adoption of ESG Principles: Ana pointed out o9 Solutions' commitment to intertwining ESG with their business values, showcasing sustainability as a key aspect of their ethos.

"Integrating ESG isn't just good for the planet; it's imperative for our bottom line and long-term resilience."

Ana abreu
Ana AbreuPre-Sales Director, o9 Solutions

#7: Supplier collaboration must engage all tiers of the supply chain

In today's complex and volatile global market, businesses are moving beyond just dealing with tier-1 suppliers and are increasingly engaging with multiple levels of their supply chains. Gustavo Calzavara, Senior Director of Industry Solutions at o9 Solutions, spoke about this shift towards deeper supplier relationships that span various tiers, emphasizing its importance for building resilient and mutually beneficial partnerships:

  • Extending Supplier Collaboration: Calzavara stressed the need for businesses to broaden their collaboration beyond just tier-1 suppliers, involving all levels of the supply chain. This approach is crucial for adapting to market changes and mitigating risks.
  • Breaking Down Internal Barriers: He highlighted the importance of eliminating internal silos within companies to facilitate integrated decision-making and collaborative planning. This integration is key to strategic success.
  • Embracing Scenario Planning: Scenario planning plays a vital role in navigating uncertainties in the supply chain. Calzavara discussed the challenges that disconnected systems pose and the need for flexible planning to respond to changing circumstances.
  • Modeling Multi-Tier Supply Chains: Understanding and modeling the complexities of multi-tier supply chains are essential. He pointed out the negative impacts of inflexibility in supply chain processes and advocated for a more adaptable approach.

"True collaboration transcends our company walls, fostering partnerships that resolve not only our supplier's issues but those of their suppliers as well."

Gustavo calzavara
Gustavo CalzavaraSenior Director, Industry Solutions, o9 Solutions
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About the author

o9 Solutions The Digital Brain Platform

o9 Solutions

The Digital Brain Platform

o9 Solutions is a leading AI-powered platform for integrated business planning and decision-making for the enterprise. Whether it is driving demand, aligning demand and supply, or optimizing commercial initiatives, any planning process can be made faster and smarter with o9’s AI-powered digital solutions. o9 brings together technology innovations—such as graph-based enterprise modeling, big data analytics, advanced algorithms for scenario planning, collaborative portals, easy-to-use interfaces and cloud-based delivery—into one platform.


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