Customer Empowerment: Why an Educated Consumer is (Still) Our Best Customer

The slogan “an educated consumer is our best customer” stood out when Sy Syms, CEO of the Syms Corporation, used it in television ads in the 1980s. Customer empowerment was an already popular notion back then.

Fast forward to today and zoom in on the decision making process involved in selecting a supply chain finance solution. Not surprising, the old slogan about customer empowerment still holds true. When making a complex, long-term decision with far-reaching implications for your company, your global trading relationships and interactions with financial institutions, such as launching a global supply chain finance program, selecting the right partner and platform is a crucial task.

Recently, a multinational corporation that had implemented a supply chain finance program with a bank proprietary system a couple of years prior to contacting PrimeRevenue and asked if its financing platform, SCiSupplier, supported certain functionality their current bank provider was not able to support. Surprisingly, a few years back, during the evaluation phase of different solutions and platform providers, the company had been advised by PrimeRevenue to consider a set of specific features and requirements, which were key success factors in the deployment of a global supply chain finance program. However, at the time, the company didn’t feel those features were important for the success of the financing program.

Secondly, the decision makers within the company were told by their bank that the functionality was supported. As it turns out, the devil is in the details.

The platform functionality provided by the bank was very basic and unable to support the complex requirements of the client’s financial supply chain. When selecting a supply chain finance provider, properly vetting that company will determine whether or not your supply chain adds value or just hobbles along. This is a story with a positive twist.

A few years passed by, and the supply chain finance program was put in place. However, because of this missing functionality of their bank provider, the financial results expected by the management and shareholders were not achieved. The company reached out to PrimeRevenue again, this time with a better understanding and appreciation of the of the key success factors in supply chain finance.

Isn’t that always the challenge in sales?

You have a solution to a problem. You build features, create services, and set up sophisticated technology. The sales team goes to market and explains to prospects why the solution is the best in solving their specific problems. The vast majority of companies find it challenging to select the right supply chain finance provider and lack a solid benchmark of what they should be looking for from a provider to ensure the long-term success of their program. When it is all said and done, despite all of the customer empowerment education done, some companies make their final decision based on relationship and trust.

Who do I trust and have a long-term relationship with? My bank has been my partner for years. They are deploying this kind of solution in the market today, how can I go wrong with that selection? They go down that route, and while selecting a bank proprietary system isn’t always a bad decision, it often turns out to me a limiting choice has a long-term effect on the company’s performance.

Lessons learned: identifying the must-haves vs. the nice-to-haves in supplier finance.

Coming back to the initial slogan of this article, PrimeRevenue’s best prospects or consumers are supply chain finance customers who have been through a successful customer empowerment deployment. They know the challenges and the key success factors such as:

  • Establishing an appropriate terms extension strategy for suppliers before the launch of program
  • It is important to sesign, outreach and track the success of a program on an ongoing basis
  • It can’t be a one-size-fits-all approach for terms
  • Rate arbitrage is good for some suppliers but not for all suppliers, no matter who you are or who the supplier is
  • In terms of your program success it does not matter whether your supplier sells its receivable or not
  • The goal is achieving terms extension, if working capital is your objective
  • Getting all suppliers educated on supply chain finance and explaining the benefits for them does not have to be challenge
  • Your supplier may not listen to your bank about why this is good for them just because they are your bank
  • The goal of supply chain finance is to have as many suppliers as possible eligible to onboard the platform regardless of the supplier’s size, credit rating, jurisdiction, currency, language, commercial disputes, seasonality, years of being a supplier, leverage, products, and/or cost of funds.

In a recent book Get Content. Get Customers by Joe Pulizzi and Newt Barrett, the authors are challenging the Syms ideal. According to the book, customer empowerment makes it more difficult to sell them. Could both statements be correct? The simple answer is yes, depending what functions and capability your solutions offers to the problems of your customer.

For PrimeRevenue, it is a welcome change to a maturing market with an educated consumer selecting the best solution based on capabilities, experience and capabilities. If you want to know what key feature was missing in the deployment and platform of the company’s supply chain finance program, please write us an email and we will provide you the information.

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Stephanie Wargo

VP, Global Head of Marketing

Stephanie joined PrimeRevenue in 2015 and oversees the company’s global marketing team and strategy. With a data-driven approach, Stephanie focuses on demand generation and thought leadership to drive brand awareness, strengthen client/partner relationships, and generate new sales opportunities. Stephanie has guided PrimeRevenue through new technology releases and an evolving FinTech landscape. In addition to leading PrimeRevenue’s internal and external communications, she implemented innovative demand generation and marketing strategies to enhance the company’s overall sales pipeline.

Stephanie has extensive experience in marketing and customer success. She previously served as Vice President of Marketing and Communications at BitPay and Vice President of Client Relations and Marketing at FirstView Financial. Stephanie earned a B.A. degree in Political Science from Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia.

Brian Medley

VP, Global Head of Sales

Brian joined PrimeRevenue in early 2012, after more than 20 years of sales leadership, executive-level consultant and business growth experience. As VP, Global Head of Sales, Brian leads a growing team of fintech sales professionals with a focus on developing strong customer relationships, improving sales predictability and helping PrimeRevenue enter the lucrative mid-market.

Prior to PrimeRevenue, Brian honed his enterprise software sales leadership skills at Clarus Corporation. He also served as an operations and IT management consultant for Kurt Salmon Associates. In addition to his sales and consulting background, Brian has deep experience in the financial industry having founded a successful residential mortgage broker and lending business. He is a graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology having earned a B.S. in Industrial Engineering and Economics and M.B.A. in Global Business.

Jason Green

SVP, Global Customer Success

Jason joined PrimeRevenue in 2021 following more than two decades in the fintech/financial services industry. He brings a strong background is sales leadership due to his impressive relationship building capability as well as a successful track record in creating structure and process improvements. In his role, Jason uses his keen attention to detail to strengthen the customer experience and enhance the company’s solutions to deliver more value to clients.

Prior to joining the company, Jason held several senior level and executive roles with a focus on building and scaling sales and support organizations at both large and small companies. Jason graduated from Murray State University with a B.S in Marketing.

Matt Ford

SVP, Global Product Innovation

Matt joined PrimeRevenue in early 2015 and is responsible for overseeing all commercial, strategic and operational aspects of PrimeRevenue’s supply chain finance offerings throughout EMEA, based in Prague. He has been instrumental in gaining global alignment and developing supplier enablement processes for the region.

Matt joined PrimeRevenue following a 15-year career at Morgan Stanley, where he worked in fixed income operations covering debt syndication through bonds, EMTNS, corporate loans and other debt securitization. Notably, he set up non-core location operations in Europe (Budapest) and all lending operations in Baltimore from scratch.

Matt, who was born and raised in South East England, earned a B.S. in Sports Science at University of Teesside where he mastered the art of TEAM development and accountability as a youth international rugby player.

Dominic Capolongo

EVP, Global Head of Funding

Dominic joined PrimeRevenue in 2016, and is responsible for leading our bank and capital markets funding strategies and execution. He focuses on building global, scalable and highly efficient funding structures that maximize options for supporting PrimeRevenue’s programs. Dominic began his career as an attorney and was a partner with Kaye Scholer before joining DLJ as a senior banker. Dominic brings tremendous strategic and capital markets experience in all areas of finance having held senior positions at, among others, Credit Suisse and RBC Capital Markets in addition to DLJ. Dominic earned a JD from Fordham University School of Law and a BA from SUNY Binghamton.

Gavin Cicchinelli

Chief Operating Officer

Gavin joined PrimeRevenue as Chief Operating Officer in 2021. With more than two decades of leadership and executive experience along with a deep understanding of the payments space, Gavin provides a unique focus on improving and strengthening operational strategies and implementing GTM growth execution. He is responsible for leading transformation across corporate and operational strategies as well as building a repeatable and scalable commercial growth strategy that aligns with PrimeRevenue’s core business while delivering key adjacent growth opportunities.

Prior to joining PrimeRevenue, Gavin served as President and Chief Revenue Officer of Integrated Solutions at TSYS, a global payment processing services company acquired by Global Payments (NYSE:GPN). There, he also served as Head of Product and divisional COO. Throughout his career, Gavin has held multiple leadership positions including VP of Sales, SVP of Business Development, and President of Financial Institutions. Gavin graduated from the University of Northern Colorado, Greeley.

David Quillian

Chief Legal Officer

David joined PrimeRevenue as General Counsel in 2007. He and his team have been instrumental in successfully creating the unique legal structures that support PrimeRevenue’s multi-funder model and global funding capabilities. David is also the lead named inventor on PrimeRevenue’s two patents for Electronic Time Drafts, which allow PrimeRevenue to manage supply chain finance programs using electronic negotiable instruments as opposed to accounts receivable. Prior to PrimeRevenue, David was General Counsel at Harbor Payments, which was acquired by American Express (AXP) in 2006, and Magnet Communications, which was acquired by Digital Insight (DGIN) in 2003. He holds degrees in Economics and History from Duke University, and Juris Doctor and M.B.A. degrees from the University of Georgia.

Nathan Feather


Nathan has successfully ushered PrimeRevenue from our very early days as a visionary startup, through the financial crisis to today’s position as a thriving mid-sized leader in the cloud-enabled supply chain finance marketplace since joining PrimeRevenue in January 2006. He was instrumental in recapitalizing the company with an $80M investment led by BBH Capital Partners in 2015. Prior to PrimeRevenue, he held various financial management roles with Ariba, Freemarkets and PriceWaterhouseCoopers. Nathan holds a BS in Accounting from Pennsylvania State University.

PJ Bain


PJ has an impressive and accomplished track record as an enterprise software entrepreneur and executive. PJ has built a solid record of success with PrimeRevenue since being appointed Chief Executive Officer in July of 2009. The company has received numerous awards for growth, customer service, innovation, along with being recognized as a top employer.

PJ is a life-long software and technology entrepreneur having been involved in numerous firms in the roles of founder, executive, advisor and investor. Immediately prior to PrimeRevenue, PJ was the VP and General Manager of Exact Holding N.V. (NYSE/AMS: EXACT), a leading global provider of business software solutions. He was previously Founder and CEO of Inspired Solutions, an Atlanta-based, B2B software and services firm that grew to be the largest reseller of Exact Software in North America, later acquired by Exact. PJ holds a Bachelor of Industrial Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology.