PROFILE

Suresh Chaganti

Co-Founder and Executive Partner, VectorScient

Having spent 20+ years in consulting and technology leadership roles across multiple industry verticals that encompass the entire consumer value chain — Omni-Channel Retail, E-Commerce,  Distribution, Manufacturing, Market Research — Suresh brings fresh and well thought out perspectives.

Suresh implemented multiple ERP, CRM and Warehouse Management systems, along with rolling out new sales channels in a variety of retail marketplaces such as Macy’s, Amazon Vendor Central, Amazon Seller Central, and Fulfilled by Amazon.

Suresh co-founded VectorScient, a Predictive Analytics software for Retail and Distributors.

To learn more, please visit: vectorscient.com

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  • Posted on: 05/13/2021

    Has augmented reality tech reached an inflection point at retail?

    I have personally used AR to buy eyeglasses. The technology worked great. I also used it on Wayfair. The most practical impact would be on reducing buyer remorse and returns. There is a great opportunity to increase the confidence in purchase with product fit, size, appearance, colors, look, etc. across multiple categories - beauty and skincare, clothing and apparel, most of the home goods, furnishings. Retailers should focus on usability and functionality before prioritizing the gimmicky stuff.
  • Posted on: 05/13/2021

    How high can thredUP grow?

    ThredUP is doing better, but the numbers hide more than they tell. First of all, the operating losses stayed the same at about 27 percent. For the quarter ending March 2020, they made a $13 million loss over $48 million revenue. For March 2021, they made a $15 million loss over $56 million revenue. Mind you these are operating losses. Not because of some depreciation based on heavy R&D investment that will pay in the future. The reason for operating losses is because they are not classifying the product cost correctly. Each item that ThredUP handles needs to be cleaned up, categorized, and made ready for resale. They do not put this under the product cost. Therefore the contribution margin is shown very high, along with gross profits. If the total product cost is classified correctly, it would be nowhere near attractive -- not now, not in the near future. Re-commerce is a big market. And ThredUP is positioned well from a strategic point of view. But it is not operationally making it work just yet.
  • Posted on: 05/12/2021

    Will going low lift up Bed Bath & Beyond’s sales and profits?

    Bed Bath & Beyond need to cover Good/Better/Best in dominant categories. So this covers the lower end of the spectrum. It is a complex turnaround where all aspects of the business need to work well. This particular maneuver depends on capable sourcing and supplier base. At the low end of the price point, the market will be there. It then depends on the supply chain to keep the product category from becoming a loss leader.
  • Posted on: 05/12/2021

    Uber Eats delivers dinner with a side of blush

    Uber is in a super-app category, blending ride-hailing, restaurant delivery, and now regular retail categories. We should expect it to enter multiple categories - perhaps concert tickets, movie tickets, and events, which will converge with rides, dining, last-minute gifts, and event tickets - all in a seamless experience.
  • Posted on: 05/12/2021

    Are two PacSun CEOs better than one?

    Co-CEO structure has all the obvious pitfalls. It is hard to imagine an organization deliberately seeking to create a Co-CEO structure. Rather, the circumstances of the specific situations of succession and M&A scenarios is what leads to Co-CEOs. If that is inevitable, then mutual trust and clear lines of accountability are a must.
  • Posted on: 05/07/2021

    Will store-hailing revolutionize grocery delivery?

    It is an interesting take, but the use and adoption will be limited to a few situations. It will be as popular as mobile libraries - which is not very.
  • Posted on: 05/07/2021

    What digital tools can help manage increasingly disrupted supply chains?


    It is important to look at what business capabilities matter and then look for technology that enables it. Digital technologies by themselves do not matter. For instance, blockchain is transformative for medical devices, luxury goods, or high-end electronics manufacturers where a chain of ownership is critical to assure trust in the product. For low-value products, not so much.
  • Posted on: 05/07/2021

    Walmart is going all in on 24/7/365 telehealth

    I am glad to see the healthcare system is becoming more consumerized. We are getting to know the actual costs of care, and that allows families to budget. This is particularly good given the explosion of gig economy and freelance workers. Even for regularly employed folks who have it covered by employers, the high deductible plans - as much as $15,000 per year out of pocket before insurance kicks in - are the norm. Telehealth plans like these and minute clinics are a great option. Long story short, it's great for patients to have a place to go for urgent care and primary care. Telehealth is a great option. It is a win for consumers. And it is for Walmart as well.
  • Posted on: 05/06/2021

    Labor Department makes it tougher to classify gig workers as contractors

    Certainly, Craig. Thanks for the link and additional perspective. Appreciate it.
  • Posted on: 05/06/2021

    Labor Department makes it tougher to classify gig workers as contractors

    It is true that a gig worker is at the mercy of the app to provide him the bookings. But that is true for every single business. Isn't it? We are all at the mercy of our prospective and existing customers to give us business. The moment any of these companies seek exclusivity in working relationships, bar the gig workers working for a rival, or mandate hours, it becomes untenable to call them independent contractors. But none of this is happening.
  • Posted on: 05/06/2021

    Labor Department makes it tougher to classify gig workers as contractors

    In current form, in letter and spirit, the gig workers are independent contractors. They bring their own equipment and set their own hours. That is not to say that there are enough protections for the workers, or the workers are getting fair deal. The answer is not certainly treating them as regular employees because that opens up a whole set of unintended consequences and lands a blow to innovation. Perhaps a new class of workers need to be defined. Assuring minimum wage for the time they clocked in, and group participation in benefits at the worker's cost comes to mind as a starting point .
  • Posted on: 05/06/2021

    Will a new subscription program make Circle K a daily stop for members?

    Very innovative thinking. Panera is the only other beverage subscription program that comes to mind. I am a Panera subscriber, but coffee is almost never warm in the afternoons when I typically pick up. That’s where Circle K has to be careful. We know “gas station coffee” is not exactly gourmet, but some of them are really bad. Assuming the quality of coffee is decent, Circle K certainly packs more value and they have wide category of products and services that they can extend the subscription. Think of car wash, oil changes, etc. Certainly the right way to think about monetizing the foot traffic and getting customers back.
  • Posted on: 05/05/2021

    Is the future of retail being cooked up in a lab?

    It is hard to tell. Diamonds are sought after because they are a precious commodity. We cannot compare them with other lab products such as meatless meat products or synthetic leather. While the concerns around ethical sourcing and environmental impact are the same, the nature of exclusivity with diamonds make it an altogether different category. So the success depends on how successful Pandora will be in marketing it as an as aspirational products as regular diamonds.
  • Posted on: 05/04/2021

    Will CVS make a breakthrough as it expands in-store mental health services?

    I am glad that CVS is expanding into this area. Seeing the services in a mainstream location like CVS may help reduce the levels of taboo, and convey the feeling that it is ok to seek help. From a layperson's view, I think the challenge is the lack of enough qualified practitioners in this specialization.
  • Posted on: 05/04/2021

    Kroger takes flight with drone delivery test

    Drones are one of the methods retailers are trying out. Amazon has been doing it for years. There are many paths to figure out the last mile - Target is trying with crowdsourcing, something Walmart also tried in the past. Kroger is also building MFC. And we have Urbx with a vision of a fully-automated MFC plus store. The reality is, no one has figured out the last mile yet, and a lot of innovation and experimentation is going on, which is great. In my opinion, additional layers of stock locations/neighborhood stores are required a go-between DC - MFC/store - consumer. Think of one store every five square miles, within the neighborhood that can be autonomous vehicle-friendly. A combination of proximity + right transportation method (including drones) and sophisticated demand forecasting and replenishment processes could be the solution.

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