It’s a Wrap! #ConnXSmart Inaugural Strategic Sourcing Event

Innovation and sustainability are crucial to successful supplier management programs, and we were very proud to bring together so many procurement and supplier diversity professionals with business owners from the Greater Cincinnati area and beyond at our very first strategic sourcing event.

The first-ever ConnXSmart event, held last Thursday, September 21, at Revel OTR kicked off with opening introductions from our guest speakers. We would like to express our gratitude to our community partners for making this event a great success. Their role as community catalysts coupled with their passion and innovative spirit is driving Cincinnati’s reputation as the nation’s newest tech capital.

A very diverse group of speakers kicked off the inaugural event, including Procter & Gamble purchases group manager,  Jo Haight, who discussed supplier and Cincinnati-based startup innovation initiatives at P&G. Collaboration accelerates innovation, and the consumer goods giant recognizes that forming partnerships with startups in the Greater Cincinnati area and abroad creates mutual value and development for all parties involved.  P&G partners with startup catalysts such as Cintrifuse to help them source innovation and grow the region’s startup ecosystem, ultimately strengthening and bolstering our local economy.


Pictured: Jacqueline Neal, Jillnell Joiner, and Sheila Mixon

Candice Matthews, founder & CEO of Hillman Accelerator, gave an overview on how minority and woman-owned tech companies can access capital through their newly launched accelerator. Founded this past July, Hillman is the largest accelerator for woman and minority-owned tech startups in the country. Recognizing the gender and minority disparity in the tech industry, their programs invest $100,000 in each of their companies during their 16-week development period. Already making waves, Hillman has raised $1 million dollars in funds to bring in more companies next year.

Pictured: Jo Haight

Pictured: Jo Haight

For a complete list of the speakers, click here.

From there, over 80 procurement and supplier diversity professionals wine and dined with small and diverse business owners at Cincinnati’s premier urban winery to establish strategic relationships and exchange innovative products and solutions. We are proud to say that our inaugural event facilitated the connections of myriad buyers and suppliers. The conversations promoted collaborative innovation that will fuel our country’s economic development. Lookout for future ConnXSmart events such as this one that continue to connect buyers and suppliers in an effort to create effectual, inclusive, and sustainable supply chains.

Buyers and suppliers networking at Revel OTR’s second floor

Buyers and suppliers networking at Revel OTR’s second floor

Special thanks to Revel OTR and Jessie’s Table for hosting and catering our event, and to all of our buyers and suppliers for participating in the first-ever #ConnXSmart event. Check out more of the events photos below.