Key Takeaways from the BGSA Conference with Ben Gordon
About Ben Gordon
Benjamin Gordon is the Founder and Managing Partner of Cambridge Capital. He draws on a career building, advising, and investing in supply chain companies. Benjamin has led investments in outstanding firms including XPO, Grand Junction, Bringg, Liftit, and others. As CEO of BGSA Holdings, Benjamin has spent his career investing in and helping to build supply chain and technology companies. Benjamin led the firm’s efforts, advising on over $1 billion worth of supply chain transactions. Benjamin has worked with firms such as UPS, DHL, Kuehne & Nagel, Agility Logistics, NFI Logistics, GENCO, Nations Express, Raytrans, Echo Global, Dixie, Wilpak, and others. Prior to BGSA Holdings, Ben founded 3PLex, the Internet solution enabling third-party logistics companies to automate their business. Benjamin raised $28 million from blue-chip investors including Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, BancBoston Ventures, CNF, and Ionian. 3PLex was then purchased by Maersk. Prior to 3PLex, Benjamin advised transportation and logistics clients at Mercer Management Consulting. Prior to Mercer, Benjamin worked in his family’s transportation business, AMI, where he helped the company expand its logistics operations. Benjamin received a Master’s in Business Administration from Harvard Business School and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Yale College.
About Cambridge Capital
Cambridge Capital is a private equity firm investing in the applied supply chain. The firm provides private equity to finance the expansion, recapitalization or acquisition of growth companies in our sectors. Our philosophy is to invest in companies where our operating expertise and in-depth supply chain knowledge can help our portfolio companies achieve outstanding value. Cambridge Capital was founded in 2009 as the investment affiliate of BG Strategic Advisors (www.bgsa.com), the advisor of choice for a large, growing number of supply chain CEOs. Cambridge Capital leverages BGSA’s unique approach to strategy-led investment banking for the supply chain. BGSA is known for its work helping companies achieve outsized returns via targeted acquisitions and premium sales processes, and has worked with category leaders such as UPS, DHL, Agility Logistics, New Breed, NFI, Genco, Nations Express, Raytrans, and others. Our relationship with BGSA gives us deep market expertise, access to outstanding deal flow and people flow, transactional capabilities, additional resources, and a powerful core competency in the supply chain sector. The Partners and Advisory Board members of Cambridge Capital have diverse backgrounds with complementary technical, operating and financial expertise. The Cambridge Capital team has spent their careers building, growing, and advising outstanding companies in the supply chain sector. They include former leaders of UPS Logistics, Ryder Logistics, ATC Logistics, APL Logistics, Kuehne + Nagel, and other globally recognized firms. Cambridge Capital’s professionals know what it takes to build great companies.
Key Takeaways from the BGSA Conference
- Benjamin Gordon is the Founder and Managing Partner of Cambridge Capital, a private equity firm that invests in logistics and supply chain companies.
- For the 16th year, Ben and his firm hosted the BGSA Holdings Supply Chain Conference at the Palm Beach Breakers hotel. The conference was held from January 19-21.
- The BGSA Conference is the industry’s only CEO-level conference focused on all segments of the supply chain.
- Over 300 of the top CEOs in the logistics and supply chain space attended this year’s conference to discuss technology, strategy and deals. In fact, Uber’s acquisition of Transplace began with a conversation between the respective CEOs at the BGSA conference a few years ago.
- In the podcast interview, Ben and Joe discussed 3 key takeaways from the BGSA conference:
- The first key takeaway is the increased awareness and growing importance of the supply chain space. As the pandemic and supply chain disruptions upended the economy, attention and investment money flowed to the logistics and supply chain space. Many logistics, transportation, warehousing, and freight tech companies have experienced explosive growth.
- The second key takeaway is the growth of ecommerce. It took ecommerce 10 years to become 15% of total retail sales. In the first quarter of the pandemic, ecommerce grew to become 33% of total retail sales. The staggering growth of ecommerce meant that last mile, ecommerce fulfillment, visibility solutions, returns software, and other supply chain services firms grew to meet the surging demand.
- The third and final key takeaway from the BGSA Conference was the huge amount of financial deal activity. There was an 84% growth in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) measured in dollars. The M&A deals included the following: 1.) industry consolidation, 2.)ecommerce companies buying logistics companies, 3.) logistics companies buying ecommerce companies, 4.) infrastructure companies buying logistics companies and 5.) retailers buying logistics companies. There was also a tremendous increase in supply chain technology investments, which is reflected in the growth of unicorns in the space – 25 unicorns in 2020 and 51 unicorns in 2021. Unicorn is a term used in the venture capital industry to describe a privately held startup company with a value of over $1 billion.
- BGSA Holdings specializes in providing strategy-led M&A advisory services for leading CEOs in the supply chain and technology sector. BGSA has a track record of executing over 50 deals for our clients, who rely on them for trusted and experienced transaction advice.
- Cambridge Capital is a private investment firm focused on investing in high-growth, tech-enabled supply chain companies, encompassing the logistics, transportation, distribution, and supply chain-related sectors.