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Article | March 31, 2000
Blow molder comes to Pennzoil's 'Rescue' (sidebar 1)
Tough to find suppliers
Armed with its lengthy list of packaging specifications Pennzoil’s Team Rescue spent four months last spring trying to find packaging partners. All of Pennzoil’s regular suppliers told the Team: “It can’t be done. [No one can] produce a bottle with the criteria needed.”
Eventually Pennzoil’s Michael Howe brought in Ed Campbell of G.E. Campbell & Associates (Alameda CA). Together they realized they needed to quickly find partners outside the normal Pennzoil suppliers. Campbell knew that Marpac Industries had a patented flexible spout so he got Pennzoil in touch with that company.
Then serendipitously Marpac’s Brian Williams asked Pennzoil what the spout would be used with and suggested to them that sister company Airopak might be helpful in providing a fluorinated barrier bottle. Intrigued Ed Campbell actually reached Ken Kallish vice president and general manager of the Specialty Products Div. of PVC Container at its exhibit at Southpack in Atlanta last May.
“On Thursday Ed Campbell called me at the show and asked me to work up a proposal to produce the Rescue bottle” Kallish recalls. “Then he asked me to call him back with numbers inside of an hour! I gave him a cost range and he asked me if we could do it closer to the lower end of the range. When I agreed he said he and three Pennzoil engineers would be in my office the following Monday.
“And that’s what happened. They stayed a couple of days visiting our plants and by the end of the week we had signed a contract” Kallish recalls. Pennzoil finally had its packaging partners. However the deadline for sample containers could now be measured in weeks.
“We’ve never done a project this fast before” Howe states. “So far as I know no one else has attempted a totally new bottle like this in just a few months.”
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