The World's Most Exclusive and Renowned CPO Think Tank

26 July 2018 - 27 July 2018
08:30 - 17:30
Mirbeau Inn & Spa Pinehills, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA
Ovation PORT Black_Tag-Logo.svg

This July, 50 hand-selected CPOs will gather at the world’s most exclusive CPO think tank retreat for two days of inspiration and innovation. With unrivaled networking, thought-provoking presentations, and challenging discussions, attendees set out to change the industry and the future of procurement as we know it.

Experience the Ovation retreat for yourself

5 Reasons The Most Progressive CPOs Attend the Ovation Retreat

Global CPOs Only: The world’s most dynamic minds in one place to address the industry’s most complex and rapidly evolving demands

Uncharted Waters: One-of-a-kind event that pushes conversation beyond the traditional confines of procurement and motivates change for the future - NOW

Inspiring Atmosphere: Hands down no better setting to inspire innovation, fresh thinking, and meaningful interaction amongst peers

Unrivaled Networking: The luxury of time coupled with social activities and hands-on sessions is the perfect catalyst for building lifelong, valuable business connections

No Selling: The retreat is all about you, developing ideas and gaining inspirations to unlock future opportunities with no sales pitches


Ovation’s retreat agenda is different from any other event you will attend

We look far beyond the traditions of procurement, scanning the horizon for the future trends and topics that group-level CPOs must begin to think about NOW.

Our two-day, action-packed agenda - supported by a collaborative environment and an elite lineup of speakers - explores a variety of topics including digitization, artificial intelligence, collaborative innovation, robotics, new business models, value chains, and entrepreneurial leadership.

Attendees benefit from external perspectives into the challenges that shape the business landscape, society, and in turn procurement - today, tomorrow and for decades to come.

A retreat reserved for a small group of big thinkers

The invitation-only retreat is reserved for 50 of world’s most dynamic and disruptive group-level CPOs. The exclusive gathering takes inspiration to the next level with its world-class retreat setting. As part of the Ovation retreat experience, attendees will enjoy two days at a relaxed and luxurious property designed to ignite creativity and free-thought with its unique atmosphere. With the gift of time and Ovation’s beautiful setting, the greatest minds in procurement will challenge, enlighten, and motivate fellow thought leaders.

The 2018 Retreat

50 Global CPOs are set to gather on July 26-27 at the French manor house themed Mirbeau Inn & Spa Pinehills in historic Plymouth, Massachusetts.

The theme of the two days will be “From Chaos to Coherence: Powering Positive Disruption” with prestigious visionaries leading workshops and driving divergent thinking.

The Ovation CPO Community

We are proud and privileged to have welcomed some of the most forward thinking and experienced CPOs in the world to Ovation with guests representing a cross-industry group of large, multinational companies

  • Flex CPO
  • Siemens CPO
  • Starbucks Executive VP Global Supply Chain
  • Mondelez CPO
  • Philips CPO
  • BAyer CPO
  • Babcock CPO
  • Brose CPO
  • Electrolux CPO
  • Husquarvna CPO
  • Osram CPO

What the CPO Community Has To Say:

“An opportunity to think strategically ahead beyond day to day issues.” Wolfgang Rauch, CPO, Novartis

“Both the content of the event and the informal conversations make you leave Ovation feeling energized.” Tom Linton, CPSCO, Flex

“To be world class, you need to mix with Ovation. At Ovation the best are there. And therefore, I always ensure that I’m there.” Bob Murphy, CPO, IBM

“Ovation is unique because it looks at procurement from a different angle. The time you spend with other CPOs while being challenged on new ideas and new technologies – it’s invaluable.” Matthew Tuller, CPO, CH2M

Ovation Speaker Alumni

CPOs aren’t the only visionaries at Ovation – they are joined by equally inspiring thinkers from outside procurement, uniquely positioned to challenge the procurement function as we know it.

Ovation 2018 speakers

Confirmed Visionary Speakers at the 2018 Retreat


These inspiring thinkers from outside procurement will be driving divergent thinking during the 2018 retreat through presentations and workshop facilitation.


Aaron Dollar
Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering and Material Science, Yale University
Director, Yale GRAB Lab

Aaron M. Dollar is a tenured Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science at Yale University. He directs the Yale GRAB Lab, with research primarily focused on human and robotic grasping and dexterous manipulation, mechanisms and machine design, and assistive and rehabilitation devices including upper-limb prosthetics and lower-limb orthoses.

He earned a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, S.M. and Ph.D. degrees in Engineering Sciences at Harvard, and conducted two years of Postdoctoral research at the MIT Media Lab.

Melanie Swan, Ovation 2018 speaker

Melanie Swan
Founder, Institute for Blockchain Studies
Blockchain Theorist, Purdue University

Melanie Swan is a Technology Theorist in the Philosophy Department at Purdue University and the founder of several startups including the Institute for Blockchain Studies, DIYgenomics, GroupPurchase, and theMS Futures Group.

Melanie enjoys creating new solutions for how we do things in the world. Her career has focused on academic research, finance, and entrepreneurship. She’s held a variety of management and finance positions and continually serves as an advisor in academic, government, corporate, and startup settings. Additionally, she is active in the community promoting science and technology opportunities, sits on several advisory boards and enjoys participating in hackathons.

David Schonthal, Ovation 2018 speaker

David Schonthal
Clinical Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship & Innovation Executive Director, Zell Fellows Program, Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University

David Schonthal is a Clinical Associate Professor of Innovation & Entrepreneurship at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, where he teaches courses in new venture creation, design thinking, innovation and creativity. He also serves as the faculty director of Kellogg’s Zell Fellows Program, a selective venture accelerator program designed to help student entrepreneurs successfully launch new businesses.

Outside of Kellogg, David is a Senior Portfolio Director and business designer at IDEO and a Venture Partner at Pritzker Group Venture Capital. He is also co-founder of MATTER, a 25,000-square-foot innovation center in downtown Chicago focused on catalyzing and supporting healthcare entrepreneurship, and serves as a member of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s technology, innovation and entrepreneurship council, ChicagoNext.

Shelby Clark, Ovation 2018 speaker

Shelby Clark
Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Turo

Shelby is a social entrepreneur who is intrigued by the power of connecting people online to positively impact the offline world. Shelby has been called a pioneer in “Collaborative Consumption” or the “Sharing Economy.”

Shelby is also the founder and a current board director of Turo (formerly called RelayRides), the world’s first and largest peer-to-peer carsharing marketplace (Airbnb for cars), which has raised over $200M in financing from top-tier investors and operates in 5,000+ cities around the world. Additionally, he was the founder and CEO of and the first CMO of pay-per-mile car insurance company, Metromile.