Understanding how customers want to meet the needs of their consumers is critical to being the partner they rely on the most to accomplish their business goals.
To help customers win in the marketplace, it is important to know their product strategy, consumers’ needs, and supply chain expectations. This is particularly true for companies that participate in the Beauty, Fragrance Personal Care, Healthcare and Homecare markets.
Silgan Dispensing understands this. The company has been providing worldwide brands with effective and innovative dispensing solutions that enhance their consumer experiences and boost their brand value for decades.
Headquartered in Richmond, Virginia, Silgan Dispensing is a leading global supplier of highly engineered triggers, pumps, sprayers, and dispensing closure solutions to major companies in the home, health, and beauty markets.
Working tirelessly to ensure a positive experience for Silgan Dispensing’s customers and consistently meet their unique demands is the company’s President, Kevin Clark.
We had an exclusive opportunity to interview Kevin to glean insights into Silgan Dispensing’s journey to becoming a best-in-class dispensing solution provider.
A Customer-Centric Team and Culture
The foundation of Silgan Dispensing’s differentiation and success is its team and culture.
“We have a very knowledgeable team and a collaborative culture,” says Kevin. “Our team works together to create solutions that address our customers’ business challenges and then works closely with our customers to deliver the solutions to their consumers.”
This approach has helped Silgan Dispensing to build its reputation as a trusted partner. “It’s our passion to enable our customers’ business success,” Kevin emphasizes.
In addition to Silgan Dispensing’s stand-out team and culture, the company has a wide portfolio of high-performance products and a global footprint that enables it to provide local market service. Moreover, the company has extensive marketing, new product development, and innovation teams that work in concert with its customers to determine new product solutions that will meet the needs of consumers.
Helping Brands to Enhance Consumers’ Lives
The Silgan Dispensing team’s vision is to provide packaging solutions that help brands enhance the lives of their consumers. Driven by its vision, the company’s mission is to be the world’s leading dispensing company.
Kevin and his team believe these outcomes are achieved by leveraging market and consumer insights to create dispensing solutions that enhance an end user’s overall experience. “When we enhance consumer perception of our customer’s brand, we have achieved our vision,” says Kevin.
Market-Leading Products and Services
Improving a customer’s business is rooted within every facet of the organization, from improving the consumer experience with their products to enhancing and simplifying how to facilitate supply. The pursuit of this ideal is what helps the business effectively meet the demands of its customers.
Speaking about the stand-out practices by Silgan Dispensing, Kevin highlights, “First, we bring a team of people, with expertise in different areas, to engage with our customers with the goal of identifying a range of solutions that support their business strategy. We strive to have this engagement process be a great experience for our customers. This is the foundation of how we stand out from the competition.”
“Our solutions include consumer-usage insights, new product development teams, responsive service programs, and, for some applications, product mixing and filling,” he added.
Silgan Dispensing has a market-leading portfolio of dispensers and trigger sprayers; an extensive range of fine mist sprayers and fragrance pumps; a broad portfolio of stock and custom closures; an innovative ophthalmic dropper; battery-operated devices; and fully filled micro packages utilizing the blow-fill-seal process.
Values in Action
Silgan Dispensing is a customer-oriented company whose core values are focused on leveraging the capabilities and insights of the entire team to bring value to each of its customer relationships.
The team works to develop in-depth knowledge of customers in order to enable their success. Silgan Dispensing works to bring innovative approaches to its product development. “Two values, customer-oriented and driven to excel, are the foundation of our goal to develop products that create impact for our customers and their consumers,” affirms Kevin.
“This continuous improvement mindset is required in the ever-changing consumer landscape where products and service solutions need to be adapted to reflect consumer needs,” he added.
Kevin understands that the business’s success is very much tied to the success of each of its team members. The company places a lot of value on its people, fostering not only a safe and inclusive work environment but one that’s also dedicated to helping its teammates grow professionally. Kevin believes in the power of working together to achieve the goals set by the company. He says, “We do our best when we work together – that’s the power of one team in action. By engaging broadly throughout the organization, we create opportunities for every team member to contribute and develop.”
Eco-conscious Dispensing Solutions
Silgan Dispensing’s team knows that sustainability is top of mind for consumers and brands alike. Shoppers are making purchasing decisions based on how sustainable a product is, but they’re also consciously purchasing from brands that are dedicated to sustainable practices.
“As a primary packaging supplier to many leading brands, we have an opportunity to help position these products and brands as environmentally sustainable with consumers,” says Kevin.
Furthermore, he says, “We’re proud to say that we offer one of the broadest portfolios of sustainable dispensing solutions on the market. We are modifying a lot of our designs to be able to offer more fully recyclable solutions to our customers.”
Over 30 of Silgan Dispensing’s core products are available with a post-consumer recycled (PCR) option. The company has recently launched two products that utilize its LifeCycle™ Technology – Pearl® 2, a next-generation airless system, and SP05™ R, a certified recyclable trigger sprayer.
LifeCycle is a revolutionary plastic spring that enables the removal of non-recyclable materials and metals found in more conventional dispensing solutions. Using this innovation means the dispenser can be made almost entirely of a single polyolefin, making the pump or sprayer ultimately more compatible with today’s recycling streams.
But sustainability for Silgan Dispensing doesn’t just end with its products. The company is incorporating practices across its business that help reduce its carbon footprint and overall impact on the environment.
“In our manufacturing operations, we’ve set goals to make our plants more efficient, greener, and safer by reducing our energy and water usage and reducing material waste that would otherwise go into landfills,” Kevin adds.
Setting Trends with Innovation
Innovation is essential to enhancing customers’ experiences, so it is a key focus for Silgan Dispensing’s team. Kevin underscores that “New trends, challenges, and needs are constantly emerging and changing in our market and among our customers.”
Furthermore, he adds, “We strive to adapt and identify unique solutions to meet these shifting demands and feel our NPD ( New Product Development ) teams are the best in our industry.”
Silgan Dispensing’s approach to innovation starts with researching consumer usage patterns. Then its team listens to the customers to learn what their specific needs and challenges are. The company then pairs these insights with its extensive knowledge of technology, design, manufacturing, and ergonomics to ensure that it is creating the best possible solution for its customers.
Overcoming the Challenges
Challenges are ever-existing and evolving within every industry. Speaking about the specific challenges that Silgan Dispensing is currently confronting, Kevin shares, “Our team and culture are essential to our success. Recruiting and developing people who like the pace of our industry, who are excited by the opportunity to work with the world’s leading brands, and who can contribute to enhancing our culture and advancing our company is an ongoing focus for us.”
As referenced previously, ensuring Silgan Dispensing contributes to a more sustainable future by reducing its carbon footprint and developing more eco-conscious dispensing solutions is also a key focus for Kevin and his team. “Sustainability is not a single pillar of our strategy but woven into every aspect of it,” says Kevin.
Silgan Dispensing’s approach to sustainability is a holistic one. Its team examines every level of the company’s business, from operations to products and people. The company is implementing practices across its manufacturing sites to reduce its carbon footprint, including working with institutions like EcoVadis and CDP to ensure that it is making and communicating measurable progress on their set sustainability goals.
Additionally, the company is also focused on quickly and cost-effectively developing new products. “Since consumer needs vary around the world, we need to do this in each geographic region,” says Kevin.
And finally, Silgan Dispensing’s team has implemented a comprehensive set of manufacturing and service strategies to best support its customers’ omnichannel sales model.
Words of Guidance
The packaging industry is an incredibly exciting environment. There are tremendous opportunities for every person, interest, and skill set.
For professionals who are looking to enter the industry, Kevin shares, “If you are passionate about building brands, developing new products, designing a dynamic supply chain, operating state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities, solving customer needs, and want to be part of a team that creates products that touch so many people in their everyday lives, then there’s a place for you at Silgan Dispensing.”
“We know our most valuable resource is our people, and we are dedicated to investing in their growth and their well-being,” notes Kevin.
A Game Plan for 2022 and Beyond
With a passionate team, a strong set of core values, and continuous innovation, Silgan Dispensing will continue to grow in the coming years.
“In support of our mission to be the preferred partner for our customers, we work to help them win in the marketplace,” Kevin told us.
Currently, Silgan Dispensing is working to bring several new products to market. Plans are also in the works to enhance the company’s manufacturing footprint, which would enable the team to provide even better service going forward.
The company has grown both organically and through acquisitions. “We will continue to look for opportunities to enhance our product portfolio and service capabilities. The acquisitions of Cobra Plastics, Albea’s global dispensing business, and Unicep have enabled us to significantly expand the portfolio of solutions we bring to our customers. This portfolio is helping them grow by integrating more fully into their business development strategies and supply chain teams,” Kevin shares.
The Leader in Charge
Kevin Clark is the president of Silgan Dispensing. He joined the company in 2013 to lead its sales, marketing, and innovation teams and was given full responsibility for the business in 2015.
Prior to that, Kevin led other global consumer packaging businesses. Reflecting on his professional journey, Kevin says, “I have been fortunate to work with, and learn from, a large number of people throughout my career.”
Silgan Dispensing has won numerous awards and recognition from customers and various platforms. Kevin says he and his team are most proud of being able to work with many of the most iconic brands in the world and that customers consistently choose Silgan Dispensing to be their partner.