CommerceHub CEO on the Impact of the Coronavirus Pandemic

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Have you been online shopping more than usual now that you're in your own home basically 24/7?

CommerceHub is a company that specializes in dropshipping.

Its CEO, Frank Poore, joined TheStreet to break down how business is being impacted by the coronavirus. 

Watch the full interview above for more.

Video Transcript:

Katherine Ross:
How have companies such as CommerceHub which offers drop shipping services fairing during this pandemic? Well, joining me today is CommerceHub CEO, Frank Poore. Frank, are you being impacted by these changes?

Frank Poore:
Well, uh, yeah, our company, we serve a lot of the largest retailers and marketplaces in North America. We've got about 12,000 brands and distributors that are connected to our network who are shipping products directly to consumer so, uh, you know, with the closure of stores, certainly there's a lot more orders going online so we're seeing an uptick, uh, in, in sales and order volume, uh, across our network. Especially as stores are closing, as retailer's warehouses are coming offline in some cases, drop shipping and a digital supply chain is becoming much more, uh, relied upon, uh, in times like these.

Katherine Ross:
What are you doing with your workforce at this time?

Frank Poore:
So, uh, over a week ago, uh, before, you know, even Governor Cuomo made the announcements, we went to a work from home model voluntarily and then, uh, encouraged it across the workforce, um, and so we've been working remotely. We've been set up to do this for a long time. We've had employees that have wanted to do this, uh, we'll see if they still want to do it after, uh, getting through this. But, uh, we, we're in a position to continue to keep up the operation, uh, in a digital fashion.

Katherine Ross:
Are you seeing any delays in deliveries?

Frank Poore:
Um, certainly as a consumer I am as I go to order, you know, even places like Amazon now, you know, may put out a date. You know, I had one of my employees say, "Geez, I tried to order something, it's saying April 21st." I said, "Lock it in." Right. So we're seeing delays across the supply chain. Uh, one of the interesting things is that we're not really seeing a slowdown in our network. Um, we are seeing items that'll run out of stock and create cancellations. But as far as actually getting products that are in stock out, we're seeing pretty traditional and normal, uh, you know, shipment times. So that's, that's, that's a good thing.

Frank Poore:
That, um, one of the things about drop shipping and having a digital supply chain is, you can rely on thousands of suppliers to continue to keep the supply chain going. You know, we've got some retail CEOs that are concerned about risk of infection in their warehouses that would require them to shut them down, um, you know, rendering them fairly useless, you know. Inventory is the life blood of retail and so, um, if there is retailers that want to be able to take inventory that's in their warehouses and get it distributed across, you know, third party logistics companies or even across some of their drop ship suppliers, they can help them to continue the flow and give them diversification, I think that's important right now.

Katherine Ross:
So what are you doing that's different from Amazon in order to get these deliveries out?

Frank Poore:
So we're facilitating the orders. The interesting thing is if, if you're Amazon, you're taking orders primarily for your own goods, um, whereas these guys, um, because they store everything in FBA. Um, we, you know, we're in essence, these retailers are load balancing order flow, uh, across their suppliers and they have in many cases multiple suppliers of the same product so that they can, you know, continue to, uh, share that, uh, order load but also to have multiple points of distribution, uh, and to diversify against that.

Frank Poore:
My sense is I think, I think the total we've been keeping very good track of this every day, um, I think out of the 12,000, uh, suppliers we have in our network that 70 of them, uh, have been either shut down for lack of sales, uh, you know, lack of workers or state mandate because they're not an essential business. But for the most part, uh, other re-, other brands and distributors are staying, uh, in business and continuing to ship goods.

Katherine Ross:
Thank you so much for taking the time to chat with us today. And for more on the markets, please head on over to thestreet.com.

Frank Poore:
Thank you.