The Global Address Data Association, Inc. (GADA), a nonprofit trade association, is the first association of its kind in the world. The address “industry” is not recognized as the professional discipline that it is, either by posts, the mailing/shipping community, or government institutions, and is not represented before its major partners – the postal systems. GADA intends to change that.
Moreover, our field of interest goes beyond the postal address to include any data points used to identify or geolocate people and places. We will start with the postal/physical address and expand from there.
GADA’s fundamental purposes are (i) to alter the way postal systems, businesses and governments look at the address and (ii) to generate new business resources, contacts, tools, and business for its membership. With the growth of e-commerce and the increase in cross-border trade, address accuracy is more important than ever. This is not understood by most governments, posts, or businesses. GADA will become influential in the UPU, the European postal environment, the Regional Unions of the UPU, Washington, DC and in academia.
Addresses are the fuel that drives postal delivery, direct mail, and numerous critical economic, political and social elements. Address systems are essential for the delivery of emergency services, for efficient urban planning, for building utility and communication networks, and much else. Postal addresses are “geo-locators” which permit the easily recognizable and communicable name of a location of a place or individual. For the most part, addresses and address systems are the province of the postal systems worldwide, but their impact and uses are broader than this.
Crisis creates opportunity
Postal systems and the businesses which are their primary customers are in crisis, but this crisis is passing. With the economic recovery we are now seeing an enormous global increase in home and office delivery of products, and a recovery in direct mail. The posts will adapt to and benefit from this change, as will other companies in the physical delivery network environment. However, this will be true only if mail and parcels can be delivered at reasonable cost to identifiable people in identifiable, geo-locatable places.
The existing weaknesses in address systems and the inefficiencies in providing postal data to mailers will prevent optimization of this recovery and maximization of the new global marketing opportunities. This in turn will soon create an opportunity of global proportions to companies who are specialists in the business of address data. GADA will work with its members, the postal systems, and others to evaluate these problems and to resolve these weaknesses.
DigitalFurther, we acknowledge the tectonic shift occurring in the communications world. The postal address will no longer be the sole communication/identity point for citizens and consumers. Thus, our remit extends to other “addresses” and their data: fixed line and mobile numbers, email addresses, Twitter and similar names, and the emerging geo-physical-based reference systems.
Competitors – None.
GADA has no direct competitors, although there are organizations and bodies which in other countries perform some of the functions GADA will undertake. None of these groups are trade associations brought together by members with a common interest and none of them are intended to have an international reach.
Membership will include address data users such as commercial and non-commercial businesses, private and public sector shippers, and postal systems, vendors to postal systems, data processors, database professionals, and governmental and intergovernmental agencies with an interest in address data and systems. The “community of interest” goes well beyond the postal realm. It is expected that members will have a major focus on files of customers maintained by businesses.
Membership will be open to individuals and corporations at prices intended to cover budgeted costs and reflect the revenue importance of addresses and data to the member.
Membership information, and a subscription form, may be found here.