Shouldn’t software for the produce industry be created by people who know the produce industry? People who understand the nuts and bolts; the many hats you need to wear, the many parts that need to move and how it’s all connected. For an industry historically underserved by technology, it is clear that real change needs to come from within.
Silo founder Ashton Braun had a deep background in software, but started his career in agriculture. After years of working in the field with growers, shippers, and distributors, he saw a need for software that could connect inventory management, accounting, payments, collections, freight and financing.
“I lived these problems with our users, and built solutions with them,” says Braun. “Solving problems in the field yields the best technology. More importantly, it builds trust and relationships that we rely on to build a better future for this industry.”
Braun knew that the most important voice in designing a platform that worked for produce professionals was… well, the voice of produce professionals. “We invited our customers to join us at the drawing board”, states Braun, “because no one knows what the industry needs better than the people who make it happen.”
“We collectively build a better product,” says Xavier Ponce, Operations Manager at Carciones Fresh Produce Co. and Silo partner. “They tell us what’s possible and we tell them what’s needed.”
Silo is on a mission to empower produce distributors, growers, shippers and packers to run their operations more efficiently– and to make this possible, they needed an easy-to-use system that meets their business needs.“Some of my colleagues have 40+ years of experience in this industry,” says Ponce, “so the system we use needs to be easy for everyone to work with.”
The Silo platform was designed to work for every employee up and down the chain — from growers, to sales reps, to delivery drivers, accountants and on — with a clean, simple interface that’s accessible, easy-to-understand, and works seamlessly across phones, tablets, laptops and desktops.
Silo runs on the cloud, so all of your company’s information is instantly accessible no matter where you are. All the different parts of your operations — and their intel — are always connected, allowing for seamless communication between all your employees, and a more efficient way of doing business.
“Before Silo, I used to be tied to my desk,” says Ponce. “Now, my laptop is my #1 tool for work. Silo goes where I go.”
Just like all other industries, the produce industry is rapidly evolving, and if both small and large businesses are going to compete, they’ll need to evolve, too. Silo replaces paperwork with real-time visibility into market data, lot level details, and historical trends. This visibility allows teams to visualize the bigger picture and make more informed business decisions.
“I’ve been in this industry for 47 years,” says Paul Manfre, GM of Topkatz Produce “Because of my experience, I’m able to operate on the fly, make decisions that are profitable for my business. It’s like Silo has digitized my brain. You might say Silo is enabling novices to respond to market trends like seasoned produce professionals.”
Aside from making operations and accounting easier, Silo users said they needed help getting paid faster. Working capital can be one of the fastest ways to accelerate growth, but it can also be one of the hardest things for businesses to come by. That’s where Silo Instant Pay comes in.
“We know our customers’ businesses better than any bank,” says Braun. “Banks have quickly realized this, which has allowed us to offer deep banking partnerships and the ability to offer discounted capital to our customers and their networks. It’s a win-win for everyone.”
With Instant Pay, Silo customers are in control. They decide when, and with whom they’d like to receive advance payments, empowering them to buy and sell more produce at optimal times. “The way Silo is building access to working cash flow into our overall process is exciting,” says Ponce. “They are thinking about our entire business process.”
Just because the Silo platform now exists, doesn’t mean that Braun, his team and Silo customers are finished building it. The produce industry is built on relationships, and relationships remain a focus for Silo as it continues to improve its offerings, services, and technology.
“Silo is just getting started,” says Braun. “The produce industry is ready for rapid expansion. Our customers want to grow their business and we are focused on building the platform and providing them with the technology to make that rapid growth a reality–now and in the future.” To learn more about Silo’s solutions send a note to Walter Gahagan at Walt@usesilo.com.