Don Hicks talks about Optilogic & what they do; answering the supply chain 'what-ifs'; & finding the perfect balance between cost, service, risk and ESG goals.

376: See The Future Of Your Supply Chain, with Optilogic

Today I’m joined by Optilogic, a forward-thinking supply chain software brand that is passionate about designing supply chains to thrive.

Optilogic’s cloud-native supply chain design solution enables businesses to build digital models of future supply chains to evaluate trade-offs across cost, service, risk, and sustainability.

Today Don Hicks, founder and CEO at Optilogic, joins me to talk all about Optilogic and what they do; taking a proactive approach to risk and resilience; answering the supply chain ‘what-ifs’; and finding the perfect balance between cost, service, risk and ESG goals.

Guest Bio:

Don Hicks is the CEO and founder of Optilogic. Don’s passion for software technology development and applying scientific and engineering methods to solve complex supply chain problems has made an indelible impact in the software industry as well as companies around the world. He is best known for founding LLamasoft, a supply chain modeling, optimization, and analytics solution in 1998, which later sold for $1.5 billion. In 2015, while CEO of LLamasoft, Don led the acquisition of Barloworld’s Supply Chain Software Division and IBM’s LogicTools supply chain applications business unit. In addition to making his mark in the supply chain technology market, Don founded a biotech software company called DNA Software. Don later established Saganworks, an Ann Arbor based tech firm that provides a 3D immersive experience used in museums, galleries, and a range of other industries. Don graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point and served as an officer in the US Army’s field artillery branch in Germany.




[06.37] Don’s entrepreneurial career history, and how it led him to found Optilogic.

“My career has really been about pursuing how I can use modelling and digital technology to help people make better decisions in the real world. I love solving real problems that have an impact.”

[08.15] Optilogic’s evolution from generic platform designed to empower developers, to supply chain design solution; and why the principles of supply chain design need redefining.

“As an industry, we focused almost exclusively on optimization and finances, and we got lazy about stress-testing these things… assumptions didn’t get tested.”

[20.31] An overview of Optilogic – who they are, what they do, and how they help their customers.

[22.24] The ideal client for Optilogic.

“We’re revolutionaries blowing up the world order! We think everybody needs to think like a designer. Our ideal clients are supply chain professionals who want to change the game.”

[27.53] The stories behind brand names Llamasoft and Cosmic Frog; and why Don wants to bring the fun to supply chain.

“Supply chain can be so dry, we take ourselves so seriously… design is about imagination, you have to have some fun!”

[30.37] A closer look at Cosmic Frog’s three core areas – optimization, simulation and risk.

[37.17] A deep dive into how Optilogic helps customers in a variety of different ways; and why we need to stop judging investments based purely on financial return.

[40.27] How supply chain design and simulation can measure sustainability to give businesses the information they need to start making impactful change; but why organizations need to reach a trade-off between cost, service, risk and ESG goals.

“We measure sustainability – how to trade that off is something the world is working on… but there’s no excuse any more for not simulating and testing out a detailed future and measuring it.”

[44.27] Don’s predictions for future technology trends.

“The trend is going to continue to be lighter weight, easy to configure, and access to it before you implement.”

[49.08] The future for Optilogic.




Head over to Optilogic’s website now to find out more and discover how they could help you too. You can also connect with Optilogic and keep up to date with the latest over on LinkedIn, Facebook or X (Twitter) or you can connect with Don on LinkedIn.

If you enjoyed this episode and want to hear more about simulation and modeling, check out 170: Give your business a fresh start – Simulation: The Future is Here or 307: Driving Your Parcel Performance: Virtual Sandbox.

Check out our other podcasts HERE.

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