In 1995, Kimberly-Clark had a product that they thought had excellent growth potential but didn’t have the support needed from its contract manufacturing side. Kimberly-Clark was trying to persuade Johnson & Johnson to white label HURT-FREE® wrap, but Kimberly-Clark’s manufacturing partner was evaluated to be too risky by J&J due to concerns regarding the cleanliness of the facility. J&J would not agree to market the HURT-FREE wrap without a better option.
Kimberly-Clark proposed J&J do a site visit to Boyd Technologies to assess the possibility of moving the production to Boyd. We had been working with Kimberly-Clark on several projects and had a good rapport with their quality department. J&J sent a quality team to visit and agreed that Boyd would be well-suited for production. Kimberly-Clark moved the equipment to Boyd.
The manufacturing process involved bonding spunbond-meltblown-spunbond (SMS) materials; spray-coating the hypoallergenic adhesive onto wide web rolls; allowing it to cure; then slitting rolls down to size. The material was inherently difficult to work with – the tackiness of the wrap interfered with the winding shafts, and the elasticity of the material meant it needed to be rewound onto the finished core with zero tension.
It quickly became apparent that the process that was in place could be improved. The previous setup utilized an interleaving paper to prevent the material from sticking to the steel shafts. However, it was ineffective, inefficient, and got bound up with adhesive. Boyd rebuilt the equipment several times to expand capacity. We identified Teflon shafts and spools to address the stickiness and rebuilt the winders to accommodate a larger incoming roll – more than doubling the productivity. We upgraded the slitting system for one that improved the cut quality and blade longevity and installed a driven unwind system to better manage the zero tension required.
Boyd Technologies was instrumental in winning the business with J&J for Kimberly-Clark. We provided a clean, efficient production environment for the HURT-FREE wrap. As the HURT-FREE wrap took off in the marketplace, we were able to stay ahead of the demand by improving and expanding the equipment line. In recognition of our work, Kimberly-Clark honored Boyd in 2000 with a supplier award “For 20 Years of Successfully Meeting and Exceeding Customer Expectations.”
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Johnson & Johnson is the largest and most broadly-based healthcare company in the world. They produce life-changing breakthroughs every day and have been for the last 130 years. BAND-AID® Brand HURT-FREE® Wrap firmly and comfortably secures dressings onto wounds. This self-adherent wrap is specially designed to stick to itself and provides durable coverage without leaving a sticky residue. The soft elastic material conforms to move with the body, making it ideal for hard-to-fit areas, like joints, while providing flexibility and cushioning on top of the wound.