Breakfast Series: Make Data a Plan, Not an Accident

Tuesday, Apr 2, 2019

What is data, how much do you have, and more importantly, how do you best capitalize on it?

Blair Merlino shared with us his experience in designing data strategy plans for a variety of clients at Deloitte and now at Cogo Labs. “The most valuable resource is no longer oil, but data”, he quoted The Economist, which was visionary in 2017 and certainly applies today. 

Data matters for every business process a company implements. But focusing on the RIGHT data is key. Blair discussed why a data strateg is needed and what it should look like:

  • Determine a clear mission and create a data strategy and a data-driven model that carries out the mission
  • Understand the benefits of unstructured, qualitative data and its importance to your business
  • Recognize the downside of BIG data, no matter how cool it sounds


A Presentation by
Blair Merlino, Director, Operations, Cogo Labs

Image by rawpixel on Pixabay.

About Blair Merlino

Photo: Courtesy Blair Merlino

Blair is currently the Director of Operations on the core analytics team at Cogo Labs in Cambridge. Cogo Labs is a startup incubator for Link Equity Partners and uses massive amounts of multi-source and proprietary data to target market opportunities, conceptualize ventures, and incept, launch, and land startups. Blair focuses on creating and leading teams that are effective and efficient, operate transparently, and are scalable. Blair and his teams drive revenue for Cogo’s ventures, verticals, and global operations through direct market activities and by optimizing processes and models used throughout the Lab.

Prior to his role at Cogo, Blair was a Senior Manager at Deloitte Consulting, with a focus on data, systems, and artificial intelligence. He is a U.S. Army veteran and holds advanced degrees in Business Administration (MBA) and Information Systems (MS-IS) from Boston University’s Questrom School of Business.

Event Details

Tuesday April 2, 2019

Deloitte, 200 Berkeley Street, Boston

8:00a.m. Registration
8:30a.m. Presentation
9:30a.m. Q&A
A light continental breakfast will be served.

$20 / GABC member
$30 / non-member

Hosted by