Where Did The Summer Go?!
(Sept 7, 2023)
Time flies when you’re tap dancing with your hair on fire and going a zillion miles an hour… or so they say, right? It feels like just a few weeks ago we were updating the News page. Since our last update, we’ve added a ton of new product data and catalogs from manufacturers, and we’re now up to 23 independent welding distributor locations that have signed up to be a part of ClearSource! Development is an ongoing process, and we were recently excited to roll out improvements to our search functionality.
At this point, it’s safe to say that manufacturers are happy that buyers and browsers have easy access to correct product information on the marketplace and the distributors’ microsites. The fact that the microsites can be turned on in a snap, and that they don’t require maintenance, is very appealing to the distributors. Next, we turn our attention to the end-users…
The welding industry’s sourcing and procurement practices have gone largely unchanged in the past 30+ years, so we’re looking for those bold few who are out there trying to solve the problem themselves online, to see if we can make our solution even more appealing. This means meeting face-to-face with the customers of our distributor partners. To be perfectly honest, we hoped to be in Chicago for FabTech this year, but that will have to wait as customers and end-users come first… so Prince George and Spruce Grove it is!
A big thank you to the organizers of the American Welding Society‘s golf tourney in Edmonton. We had a blast there earlier this summer and had some really encouraging conversations about the future of welding.
Also, thanks to Max Ceron at the Canadian Welding Bureau for having Dan on the podcast recently to talk about ClearSource.
Some Kind Words
(Mar.27, 2023) Thanks for the kind words, Jamieson from Cutting Edge Industrial Sales!
New Development(s) & Dubai
(Jan.27, 2023) We’ve been busy the last while. Let’s update you on what we’ve been up to…
While Dan continues to work away on the MXP program through GrowthX (The Alberta Innovates Revenue Accelerator) there have been a ton of other things going on.
Travel: We’ve been all over the last few months. Edmonton, Calgary, Vancouver, Cranbrook, Southern Ontario, and…Dubai?! OK, that last one is a little strange. Mike wrapped his eMBA last year but the final trip was postponed to this year. When he returns he’ll let us know whether it’s better to have sand or snow in your socks.
Brands: We’ve been rolling up more and more manufacturer partners and their catalogues of products including United Abrasives/SAIT, Nexalloy, Platinum North America, Tregaskiss, Bernard, Strong Hand Tools, Tyrolit, as well as industrial gases.
Distributors: New partners have come on board from Vancouver’s lower mainland, to the interior of BC, to Edmonton, and out to southern Ontario.
Development: After feedback from some of our distributor partners who told us “This is great, our customers are going to love it! It won’t make our jobs any easier, but our customers are going to love it.” We decided to redesign some of our workflows to make life easier for distributors’ order desks. We relaunched with these new features mid-December.
We’re excited to announce that after much anticipation we have our white-label solution in the wild and testing in beta with some of our partners. This is a turnkey solution that allows distributors to turn on an e-procurement store in just a handful of days!
Lastly, our development partners at LaunchCode hosted us on their podcast LaunchCast. Check it out here
GrowthX & BuildEx
(Nov. 3, 2022) These past few weeks have been a whirlwind! We’re getting close to launching new features to assist with fulfillment and payment information for order desks, watch for these in the days ahead. We’re also, continually delighted that so many manufacturers are connecting us with distributors, and vice versa. Thank you! Keep sharing our contact info with companies you want to see on ClearSource!
There are a handful of other developments and events that we’re really excited to share.
First, we have been accepted into the latest cohort of the Alberta Innovates Revenue Accelerator program through GrowthX. It’s a 16-week course of coaching and networking with a focus on revenue. We chatted with a few other companies that came through previous cohorts, and they all gave rave reviews. One entrepreneur we talked with even said that he learned more through GrowthX than he did through his MBA!
Second, we were at BuildEx Alberta in Calgary the last week of October. It was another encouraging bit of market validation – in a couple of ways. First, we had some great conversations with manufacturers, distributors, and contractors who are looking forward to using the platform in the construction industry. Second, we WON the Judges’ Favourite award at ConTech Software Innovation Showcase!
Lastly, special thanks to James Whelan and the gang at the CWB Association in Saskatchewan for allowing us to present to their membership at “SO YOU WANT TO BE AN INDEPENDENT CONTRACTOR?”on October 27th. We’re always happy to share information to help contractors avoid common pitfalls when starting their own companies.
So what’s next?
Mike is in Toronto this week making connections and onboarding a new distributor in Stoney Creek. If you’re going to be at FabTech in Atlanta next week watch for Mike walking the floor and ask him about how much he loves riding his fat bike in the snow!
(Sept. 12, 2022) We officially kicked off the ClearSource era last Thursday evening at LaunchCode in Calgary with dozens of friends who have cheered us on, worked with us, advised us, and partnered with us over the years.
Thank you to everyone who made it (and to those who couldn’t make it but wanted to be there). I think it’s safe to say that a great time was had by all.
Now that the dust has settled…we’re launched in beta. The focus now is on establishing our product market fit and validating our business model. Stay tuned for updates.
FABTECH 2022: SUCCESS!
It was a great introduction to the industry at Fabtech 2022 in Toronto last week! We connected with and signed up manufacturers, distributors, and dozens of end-user contractors who all told us that there is definitely a problem with sourcing and procurement in the industrial supply sector.
ClearSource is well-positioned to help strengthen the industry at all points in the process of procurement. From easily finding the products you want, to greater visibility when contractors are shopping, to better end-user visibility.
We were even able to cajole a handful of industry folks into chatting about what they see in the space!
Nikki Noble, coordinator and Professor of Welding at Lambton College, was a featured speaker on the leadership exchange panel. She stopped by to share her perspectives as a welder and teacher.
Duncan Beaumont, Director – Translas North America | Guide Gloves North America, stopped by to chat about the current state of procurement from the manufacturer’s perspective and the lack of visibility to end-user contractors.
Dan Magwood, Flexovit Canada Abrasives, was our booth neighbour. We chatted over the fence about how the industry functions today and the desire for more good data.
January 25th, 2022 – ClearSource is excited to announce that we have engaged with the Funding Catalyst team at Thin Air Labs. Working with their dedicated team of financing experts will help us ensure our Beta launch happens on time this Spring and that we can take advantage of all of the great programs that Alberta has to offer #technology companies like ours. We can’t wait to show off what we’re building and we’re so grateful that the amazing team at Thin Air is helping us get there!