Michael Delgado Distribution Talk
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How Your Conventional Distribution Software Stacks Up to AI (Hint: It’s Not Good) With Michael Delgado of Canals AI

Episode: 152

Do you know which activity is sabotaging your company’s potential? All of them. Busywork across every department––from order processing to inventory management––is a real drag on employee morale, customer relationships, and the bottom line.

Conventional software won’t save you, but AI could. In this episode of Distribution Talk, Jason chats with Michael Delgado, founder of Canals AI, about bringing the power of AI to small and medium-sized wholesale distributors. They also discuss the investigative process that led to Canals AI’s distributions-focused design, use cases, and the one significant difference between your current software package and artificial intelligence.

“I didn’t always want to be in tech,” says Michael, a former lawyer-turned-AI-company-founder. The career shift isn’t that peculiar. He’s genuinely comfortable with taking risks, although the idea for Canals AI started in the comfort of his own home. “Specifically, from my wife, who runs an automotive parts distributor she founded.” Michael frequently helped her set up software tools to automate processes and visit her warehouses. Her challenges piqued his interest. “I started talking to other distributors and learning about the biggest pain points in their businesses and saw what everybody in the wholesale distribution industry takes for granted,” he says. “I was learning for the first time that distribution is a hugely important market––and the software in that market is generally leaving a lot of distribution’s needs unaddressed.” Enter Canals AI. Michael’s company works with distributors to identify which workflows would benefit from AI intervention. Some common examples: processing RFQs and generating quotes, procurement, proactive product recommendations, and inventory forecasting. Using machine learning to automate those processes, Canals creates better ways of handling those tasks so that humans can concentrate on their zone of genius: originating ideas and building relationships. “The biggest, most resourced companies can do stuff like this without AI,” says Michael, “but AI makes it accessible to everybody.”


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“You make a quantum leap in terms of what now becomes possible if you can train models where you don’t have to write all the rules, pump through a bunch of examples and training data, refine that, and use these techniques, kind of going back to neuroscience and the human brain, that really do mimic our human learning.”

“We’ve moved beyond coded logic. We’ve moved beyond those if this/then that type of rules into a complicated space of reasoning where the outcome is based on patterns and context, not rules.”

“For what it’s worth from me, one person who works in this technology all day, every day, I don’t think it’s replacing the humans.”






Distribution Talk is produced by The Distribution Team, a consulting services firm dedicated to helping wholesale distribution clients remove barriers to profitability, generate wealth, and achieve personal goals.  

This episode was edited by The Creative Impostor Studios. Special thanks to our sponsor for this episode: INxSQL Distribution Software, an integrated distribution ERP software designed for the wholesale and distribution industry.

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