Then & Now: Bryan Most shifts from corporate world to startup

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 960 views 

Editor’s Note: The following story appeared in the March 1 issue of the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal. “Then & Now” is a profile of a past member of the Business Journal’s Forty Under 40 class.

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After more than two decades working for the world’s largest retailer, 2020 brought a significant change for longtime supply chain and logistics executive Bryan Most.

He closed the book last summer on a long career at Walmart Inc. for a job with a startup company called New York Shipping Exchange (NYSHEX).

“I believe we all need to continue growing both personally and professionally in life,” Most said in a recent interview. “While I had the fortune of working for one of the largest companies in the world, I realized there was still so much to learn and relationships to build in other industries.

“In the world of startups and digital technology, the speed of change is exhilarating, and I’m having fun embracing a new challenge.”

During his Walmart tenure, Most, 48, led various supply chain and global transportation teams. In 2007, the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal selected Most — then a senior director in the retailer’s international transportation division — to its Forty Under 40 class.

After 15 years of traveling the world and leading the global logistics supply chain, Most said it was time to transition to something closer to home, where he had a wife and two small children. In 2015 he became vice president of Walmart’s private fleet transportation, with oversight of drivers, transportation offices, truck shops and regional operations centers (ROCs) in the eastern U.S. Those operations supported transportation efforts for Walmart.com, import, apparel, grocery and general merchandise deliveries to Walmart and Sam’s Club retail operations.

“I will always cherish the lifelong friendships I developed while traveling the world with fellow associates or on the interstates with our amazing truck drivers,” Most said. “I am also grateful to all the extraordinary servant leaders who inspired and developed me into the person I am today. It was a joy to work every day knowing that I worked for a company that shared my personal beliefs of respecting all individuals, striving for excellence, and always serving others.

“I’m also very proud of the impact we made on local communities and charities through various serving opportunities.”

With NYSHEX, Most is senior vice president of retail. Though the company’s headquarters is in the historic Woolworth Building in lower Manhattan, Most is still based in Rogers, where he lives with his wife Robin and their two daughters McKenzie (13) and Mady Grace (11).

Founded in 2015, NYSHEX is a digital trading platform that enables shippers and ocean carriers to enter digital forward contracts for global shipper containing. The company has developed a standardized contract template that both parties can use.

Most’s job is to help build out the growing retail shipper segment. Retail represents 24% of the container market, Most said.

He said rising consumer demand and constrained container supply are causing supply chain disruption on the seas.

“We use innovative technology to match shipper requirements with carriers’ services through guaranteed contracts,” he said. “Two-way committed or ‘guaranteed’ contracts have grown in popularity over the past few years in response to growing global supply chain disruptions.”

Most said 2020 was a record year for NYSHEX with volume growth (expressed in Twenty Foot Equivalent Units) of 220% and member retention of 100% in the all-important holiday fourth quarter.

NYSHEX also announced $13.5 million in additional growth financing in October — led by NewRoad Capital Partners of Rogers, Arkansas’ largest private equity fund — along with many original investors.

The funding will help NYSHEX provide more technology to shippers, with an initial focus on retailers, whose shipping needs are rapidly changing.

“The biggest issue facing many in the supply chain right now are direct results of the COVID-19 recovery,” Most said. “While many in the supply chain are playing a critical role in that recovery, there are still structural capacity issues that are causing major disruptions for both shipper and carriers. NYSHEX is uniquely positioned to help stabilize and bring much-needed predictability to many customers due to the guaranteed contracts we offer.

“However, I do believe it will still be several months before supply chains get back to the fluid nature we have all become accustomed to in the past.”

Most is a board member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes and Five Talents Faithful, a recently launched nonprofit in Bentonville that helps nonprofits and organizations that serve them maximize stewardship.

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