Two keynotes have been announced for the Adhesive and Sealant Council’s (ASC) Fall Convention and Expo, scheduled to take place October 17-19 in Indianapolis, Ind. Robert Fry, chief economist with Robert Fry Economics LLC, and Nat Brooks, a principal with Strategy Shapers LLC, will share their insights with attendees.

Robert Fry, Chief Economist, Robert Fry Economics LLC

Robert Fry will present “An Outlook on the Global Economy in 2016, 2017 and Beyond,” with emphasis on U.S. manufacturing and on markets of particular interest to ASC members. Among the topics discussed will be gross domestic product (GPD), industrial production, housing starts, motor vehicle sales, oil and gas prices, exchange rates, inflation, and interest rates.

Fry is chief economist of Robert Fry Economics LLC, where he analyzes, forecasts, and explains the global economy to guide decision-makers at manufacturers that make and use chemicals and polymers, and to inform the equity analysts, hedge funds, and private-equity firms that follow such companies. He is also adjunct professor of economics at the University of Delaware, where he teaches Economic Analysis for Business Policy (i.e., managerial economics) to MBA students.

Until his retirement in June 2015, Fry was senior economist at DuPont, where he analyzed the global economy and its impact on the company; published a monthly newsletter sent to thousands of DuPont employees and customers; and made more than 800 speeches on the economic outlook to senior management, business teams, customers, and trade associations. While at DuPont, Fry and colleague Bob Shrouds were named among the top economic forecasters by Bloomberg, USA Today, and The Wall Street Journal. In 2005, they received the Lawrence R. Klein Award for Blue Chip Forecasting Accuracy, making the DuPont Economist’s Office the only three-time winner of the award. He received a bachelor’s degree in economics from Ohio University and a master’s degree and doctorate in economics from Harvard University.

Nat Brooks, Principal, Strategy Shapers LLC

Nat Brooks will give a keynote on innovation strategies for today’s market. His presentation topic will continue into a forum, which will examine current innovation, assess the key trends and features that will likely govern the marketplace over the next decade, and bring together customer and member perspectives on how to build business and deliver innovation today.

Brooks is the principal of Strategy Shapers LLC. With his 25 years of Fortune 500 finance, strategy and general management experience, he helps clients create world-class market and competitive intelligence, as well as develop winning business strategies. From 2005 until 2012, he built Procter & Gamble’s corporate Competitive Intelligence organization.

Brooks is a recognized leader in competitive strategy in the consumer packaged goods industry and was a member of P&G’s prestigious CFO Circle. During his time at P&G, he also mentored competitive and market intelligence leaders at such firms as Newell Rubbermaid, Cintas, Brown-Forman and Pella Window. Prior to 2005, Brooks led competitive intelligence and strategy development for P&G’s paper business. His competitive analysis and cost benchmarking work enabled the turn-around of P&G’s diaper business after the stagnant decade of the 1990s. Earlier in his career, Brooks worked as an internal auditor, cost analyst, financial analyst, manufacturing plant controller and manufacturing operations manager.

Alan Isaacson, CEO, ABI

Alan Isaacson will present “Avoid Commodity Traps: Reformulating Your Marketing to Bond with High Level Specifiers.” Isaacson will share sales and marketing strategies designed to help industrial companies build relationships with high level specifiers that are based on value, not price. He’ll advise how to reshape discussions with customers so that conversations no longer focus on adhesives but on solving challenges and capitalizing on opportunities. In addition, he will discuss how to leverage value-driven messaging to better connect with specifiers as they read from smart phones, tablets and laptops and other communications channels. Key session takeaways include: building blocks to create a refreshing, dynamic messaging platform for your technologies that takes the focus off pricing; common sales and marketing mistakes that industrial manufacturers make and how to avoid them; and tips to effectively engage and build relationships with key decision makers.

Isaacson is CEO and founder of ABI, a global B2B marketing public relations firm that helps companies grow business regionally and globally in diverse markets. For more than 35 years, Isaacson has delivered strategic branding and marketing counsel to both Fortune 500 corporations and startups operating in the automotive, construction, life sciences, packaging, food, and consumer electronics industries. His experience includes helping National Adhesives successfully launch the industry’s first waterborne adhesive for flexible packaging applications. Isaacson’s counsel has been featured in marketing, sales and business publications around the world, and he has spoken at numerous industry events for groups including the Flexible Packaging Association, Paperboard Packaging Council, PMMI: The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies, and the MarketingSherpa Summit.  ASI

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