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ConnXus Debuts All-in-One Supplier Diversity Management Tool at 2015 NMSDC Conference San Diego

MASON, Ohio–(BUSINESS WIRE)–ConnXus®, the Mason, Ohio-based company that connects diverse and small businesses with companies seeking to expand and diversify their supplier base, has upgraded its technology platform to better connect buyers and suppliers in the marketplace.

The platform, centered on an innovative all-in-one user dashboard, will debut at the 2015 NMSDC Conference in San Diego, California this month. ConnXus team members will provide live product demonstrations during the Business Opportunity Exchange on Oct. 19. Look for booth 947.

Demonstration will be available on-demand, or schedule a demo with a ConnXus account executive ahead of the conference. Get all the information you need here.

The intuitive, new Web interface allows buyers to access compliance information, find, hire and manage suppliers, and track diverse supplier spend. Additionally, suppliers can create and manage a custom profile, upload certification documents and find potential opportunities with match notifications in the ConnXus platform.

“This tool is a game-changer in the supplier diversity space,” says ConnXus COO Daryl Hammett. “This platform allow users to manage every aspect of their supplier diversity program in one place, creating an easy, seamless experience.”

ConnXus corporate supplier diversity tools include :

ConnXus Scrub: Identify and validate diverse suppliers in your existing database

Supplier Registration Portal: Collect, search and filter key diverse vendor information in a private, branded repository.

TierTracker®: Capture direct and indirect Tier1 and Tier2 spend with customized reports in a single repository.

ConnXus Database: Access a database of more than 1.7 million diverse suppliers (refreshed daily).

These upgraded products reflect months of feedback from current and potential customer feedback, and more fully reflect our motto: Supplier Diversity Made Simple®.

“The all-in-one dashboard feature makes a historically manual process more efficient. This makes our clients jobs easier, and facilitates a more sustainable diverse supply chain,” says Account Executive Carrie Hawkins.

To date, ConnXus has helped Fortune 500 companies navigate the procurement process, including The Coca-Cola Company, McDonald’s Corporation, Harley-Davidson Motor Company, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and Brown Forman.

Video Debut: ConnXus: Supplier Diversity Made Simple

Today marks the launch of our latest video. Take a deeper dive into ConnXus and our Supplier Diversity Management software. Questions? Contact

ConnXus takes home 2015 National BDPA Awards


The team at ConnXus is proud to announce recognition for its Supplier Diversity management platform from the National BDPA.

BDPA is an organization with a diverse membership of professionals and students at all levels in the fields of information technology, computer science and related S.T.E.M fields. Members are actively engaged in serving the community through outreach and charting the future of the IT industry.

The BDPA Motto is: “Advancing Careers From The Classroom To The Boardroom.”

We appreciate the awards and, as a minority owned company in this space, we continue to strive to make Supplier Diversity initiatives more accountable, efficient and successful.

BDPA awards include :

  • The 2015 Earl Pace Beacon Award for Outstanding Technical Contribution.
  • Individual Epsilon Award for Outstanding Technical Contribution: Rod Robinson

Find out more about the ConnXus platform here.



What I Learned from P&G at the 2015 NMSDC Conference in San Diego

Reshoring Opens Opportunities for Diverse Suppliers


Rosemary Coates, Founder of Blue Silk Consulting (WBE) and The Reshoring Institute, recently shared insightful information with ConnXus regarding reshoring initiatives and the opportunities it presents for diverse suppliers, including woman-owned, minority owned and veteran-owned businesses. Learn more about how The Reshoring Institute supports the diversification of US supply chains in this guest blog authored by Ms. Rosemary Coates.

A recent study by the Boston Consulting Group found that 54% of companies over $1 billion in revenue are reshoring their production now or at least considering it. Reshoring is the process of bringing manufacturing back to the US – the opposite of offshoring. While there are a lot of news articles and people talking about reshoring, there are very few resources to help companies through the process. The US Department of Commerce offers ACE, an analysis tool for evaluating your reshoring program, and there are other organizations doing some work in this area, but it is not enough for most companies to complete a Reshoring project.

To fill this gap, Blue Silk Consulting and the University of San Diego established The Reshoring Institute, a 501c3 Non-profit organization. The Reshoring Institute is organized under the umbrella of the University of San Diego Supply Chain Management Institute, to provide research and support for companies trying to bring manufacturing and services back to America. This research may include things like site comparisons, tax incentives available, science and math education available by area, marketing and PR and cost comparison development. The Reshoring Institute Directors oversee and guide this reshoring research and support work, using graduate student interns from the University.

The Reshoring Institute has a dual purpose:

  • To provide support and research for companies trying to reshore manufacturing to the US
  • To educate students about manufacturing in America

The University of San Diego was chosen for this collaboration because of its strong programs in global supply chain management, its proximity to Mexico and production that could return from there, availability of graduate-level interns and its very active Supply Chain Management Institute.

The ConnXus Connection

As companies reshore production, they must also rebuild their supply base in the US. During the past 25 years, production has moved offshore and supporting suppliers have followed. Whole industries such as furniture, apparel and footwear and plastics left in the 1990s and 2000s, but are now starting to come back. Rebuilding a supporting supply base is a non-trivial task and can easily take a year or more. This presents a grand opportunity for woman-owned businesses, small businesses and disadvantaged suppliers. The doors are open to new ideas and new suppliers.

To discover new Reshoring opportunities, suppliers should:

  • Be alert for news articles about companies that are reshoring
  • Stay in touch with local and state Economic Development organizations – these people are usually the first to know about new businesses in their area
  • Subscribe to the Reshoring Institute’s Quarterly Newsletter (
  • Visit the Reshoring Institute’s on-line free library of articles on Reshoring and other research

The future is bright with pathways to bringing manufacturing back to America and supporting these efforts with American suppliers.

About the Author

Ms. Coates is the Executive Director of the Reshoring Institute and the President of Blue Silk Consulting, a WBE Global Supply Chain consulting firm. She is a best-selling author of: 42 Rules for Sourcing and Manufacturing in China and 42 Rules for Superior Field Service and The Reshoring Guidebook. Ms. Coates lives in Silicon Valley and has worked with over 80 clients worldwide. She is also an Expert Witness for legal cases involving global supply chain matters. She is passionate about reshoring. 

Coming Soon: Share Your Story Contest



2015 Year in Review



Cincinnati Business Courier Names ConnXus a “Startup to Watch in 2016”


Dec 29, 2015, 12:22 PM EST Updated: Jan 4, 2016, 9:54 AM EST


Cincinnati’s startup scene continues to grow.

In 2015, we saw tens of millions of dollars in investment, a $100 million acquisition and the #StartupCincy community knit closer together. If this momentum continues, 2016 could shape up to be a big year as well. Here are some of the startups the Courier believes are worth keeping an eye on in the new year:

  • LisnrLisnr seems unstoppable. The startup, which uses inaudible tones to transmit and receive data, received a $10 million Series B round led by Intel Ventures, a tech giant that doesn’t invest in just anyone. In addition, Lisnr was selected by Visa to pilot a technology for contact-free mobile payments and hired new executives from Gracenote and Procter & Gamble Co.
  • Everything but the House: EBTH was another startup that raised massive funds in 2015, locking down $30 million in a Series B round. It’s also beefing up its C-suite, hiring Mandana Dayani from Rachel Zoe Inc. as its chief brand officer and Sachin Gadhvi from Ticketmaster as its chief marketing officer.
  • ConnxusConnxus may not have raised the eight-digit sums in 2015 that others on this list did, but it did lock down a $2.5 million seed-plus round led by Techstars, one of the biggest names in tech startups. The hiring diversity platform has major clients, like McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, Harley-Davidson, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and Sun Trust Bank. It saw revenue growth of 104 percent in the last year and 700 percent compound annual revenue growth since launching its first product in 2012.
  • Enable InjectionsEnable Injections produces a device that painlessly injects drugs underneath the skin. In 2015 it added a rock star from the pharmaceutical world– Jeannie Joughin, who was formerly a vice president at CSL Behring – to its team to help grow its customer base in the industry. It also added Timothy Flaherty, who has held executive positions at Bonfiglioli, Arvinmeritor, Ametek and AtriCure, as chief financial officer.
  • IncludeFitness: Ryan Eder won a prestigious national award in 2007 for The Access, a piece of exercise training equipment that could be used by anyone, regardless of ability or disability. That award was won the following year by the iPhone. Eder has gone on to refine his design and plans to go into full production in 2016.
  • Structure: Structure is still a young company, even in startup terms, but it has a proven team behind it. Charlie Key and Brandon Cannaday founded Structure after selling their first startup, Modulus, a 2012 Brandery grad, to Progress Software in 2014. It certainly helps that the space they’re playing in, the Internet of Things or connected devices, is extremely hot.

Select for Cincinnati Business Courier article. 

​Tis the Season for RFP’s

As the hustle and bustle of trade shows and industry conferences comes to a close for 2015, the season of business proposals and procurement bids is in full swing. After months of networking and relationship-building, procurement leaders are ready to gather information on prospective suppliers. Procurement, or the act of buying goods and services, is streamlined through RFI, RFP and RFQ processes.

Here’s a simple breakdown of the acronyms:

When a buying organization disseminates a Request for Information (RFI), they are seeking general information about prospective suppliers’ capabilities and services/goods. The next phase in the procurement process, involves either a Request for Quotation (RFQ), or a Request for Proposal (RFP). When a company distributes an RFQ, they are simply asking for suppliers’ pricing on the requested services. An RFP, on the other hand, is a request for suppliers’ comprehensive overview of their company background, detailed descriptions of the requested products/services, and often times a specific questionnaire is required for completion.

As a small or young business, having the following 8 items on-hand and up-to-date will accelerate the generally mind-numbing, yet vital procurement process to winning a contract:

1. Professional Cover Page

First impressions are everything, or so they say. Be sure to design a professional and clean cover page that accurately reflects your company’s identity. This should be representative of your company’s brand, the title of the requested service or product and the proposal date.

2. Table of Contents

Provide your audience with an easy-to-read, and understandable overview to reference the sections they’re most interested in. If possible, number the sections according to the information requested by the buying organization.

3. Company Background and Overview

Let’s face it, without this component the procurement team will have no idea who or what your company is about. A cover letter and executive summary are also appreciated elements in an RFP.

4. Comprehensive Product Descriptions

An all-inclusive, detailed overview of the requested product or service should completely exhaust any questions the prospective buyer may have. Be organized in your approach and break out exhaustive paragraphs into digestible sections with bolded or italicized headings.

5. Implementation Plan

The implementation plan includes your company’s step-by-step timeline for new client onboarding. The plan should include a timeline overview in order for your prospective client to schedule accordingly with their own team.

6. Financial Review

Be prepared to detail up to two (2) to three (3) years of your company’s financial information. To avoid the headache, be proactive and be sure your company’s financial review is up-to-date for the past 2-3 years.

7. Referrals

Before entering the RFP, RFQ or RFI submittal process, it’s wise to have three-four client referrals on-hand. Choose wisely: these referrals should have a positive experience doing business with your company.

8. Pricing Outline

Having a standard pricing sheet for all of your products/services will make your life way easier when the RFI’s, RFQ’s and RFP’s start rolling in.

Have questions about the bid proposal writing or organizing process? Email our marketing coordinator