Did you know...
Argotec has the most modern polyurethane film manufacturing facilities in the industry and the full diversity of extrusion technology - the capability and capacity - but also the commitment and expertise to custom engineer TPU films for your most challenging applications.
TOLL (CONTRACT) MANUFACTURING
Argotec was founded and built its first manufacturing facility in 1988. The company's initial order was from a contract customer we still serve today. Since then Argotec has grown to be one of the world's largest toll (contract) manufacturers of high-performance, custom-engineered, polyurethane film and sheet. The company's film products are sold into a broad array of industrial markets, including automotive, medical, semiconductor, graphics, construction, textiles and more. With a full line of standardized film offerings, as well as producing proprietary film products for some of the biggest names in the specialty film and chemical industries, Argotec has the capability and experience to satisfy virtually any potential private label or toll customer.
TOLL MANUFACTURING DEFINED
Toll manufacturing, also called toll processing or contract manufacturing, produces film products that are normally unique, custom engineered, proprietary goods made exclusively by the toll manufacturer (the "toller") for the contracting firm (the "customer") and are branded as such.
The toll arrangement may be for small, short-term prototype runs, full-scale high-volume production contracts that span many years, or any size program in between. Depending on the arrangement negotiated between the two companies, the contracting firm may assume ownership of the finished product the instant it comes off the production line, at the time it is shipped, or at any other point in the overall process as specified in the contract.
There are a variety of reasons a customer may choose to enter into a contract relationship with Argotec instead of producing their own TPU film in-house or purchasing one of our proven standardized formulations. These include:
- To maintain exclusive control of the intellectual property. The customer may have developed a proprietary resin, an exclusive film formulation (the mix of TPU resin and additives), or a unique substrate onto which the film is cast.
- To lower material costs by providing the resin and additives directly to the toller (although this isn't always the case, depending on the purchasing power of the customer versus that of the toll manufacturer).
- To lower manufacturing costs by using a toll manufacturer with a very modern, efficient production operation.
- To take advantage of a toll manufacturer's superior knowledge and experience base, TPU film being a very difficult product to extrude properly.
- To avoid the capital investment in equipment, personnel and training required to create an effective in-house TPU film production operation.
- To maximize and maintain brand exclusivity by controlling all phases of product manufacture, rather than simply affixing a label to another company's TPU film product.
- To streamline time-to-market, creating the flexibility to accelerate the timing of a new product introduction.
- To compensate for lack of capacity or technical capability on the customer's existing in-house TPU film extrusion lines.
- To guarantee confidentiality.
Any or all of the above may be valid reasons for a firm to decide to enter into a contract manufacturing relationship with Argotec instead of private labeling an existing product or building an in-house production operation to produce their own finished goods.
WHO SUPPLIES THE RAW MATERIALS?
A key decision in the contract manufacturing process is to determine the source of the raw materials from which the tolled TPU film or sheet is to be made. It may come from three different places:
- The contract customer, if a resin supplier or chemical company, may provide their own specific TPU resin. They may also supply any additives to complete the film recipe. While this gives the customer complete control over the raw materials and their cost, it also places responsibility on the customer to ensure timely deliveries of raw materials so the toll manufacturer will be able to meet the production schedule specified in the contract.
- The customer may purchase a specially developed resin and additive package from an outside resin manufacturer or chemical company of his choice. As above, the customer controls the cost of raw materials provided but also assumes full responsibility for supplying the correct resin and additives to the toller in a timely manner in order to allow the contracted production schedule to be met.
- The toll manufacturer may purchase the specified resin and additive package in behalf of the contract customer, usually for a negotiated fee. This can give the contract manufacturer greater control over the overall total film production schedule.
WHY CHOOSE ARGOTEC AS YOUR TOLL MANUFACTURER?
Argotec is the specialty film industry's preeminent contract manufacturer of polyurethane film and sheet. Large or small, we have the facilities, capacity, organization and experience to satisfy any potential contract customer and provide any one or all of the following services on a contract basis:
- Product engineering: working with the customer to design a TPU film product that will function properly in the final application or on the customer's secondary fabrication or converting operation.
- Manufacturing (process) engineering: designing the production process so it runs properly on the Argotec extrusion operation.
- Raw materials management: when permitted by the contract, Argotec is given freedom and responsibility to order resin and additives from the customer or the customer's resin supplier to ensure materials are available in time to meet film production schedules.
- Manufacturing expertise: Argotec has assembled a team of seasoned professionals who know polyurethane film inside and out, from the raw resin to how to extrude a successful film product.
- Batch preparation: pelletizing, grinding and blending of the resin and any additives to prepare the exact batch recipe needed for conversion into TPU film or sheet.
- Film extrusion: this includes not only having a modern film extrusion operation and the know-how to use it, but also the proper environment for the extruders in order to prevent corruption of the film product by airborne contaminants. Eight of Argotec's extrusion lines are housed in multi-atmospheric clean rooms to ensure the cleanest possible film products.
- Quality control systems: the production of extremely consistent TPU film products, chemically and dimensionally, is a result of balancing three critical factors: recipe control, process control, and exacting adherence to customer specifications. Argotec's ability to consistently manage these factors is essential to our creating a total, unified QC process that provides the customer with a film product that will meet or exceed the requirements of the final application.
- Warehousing facilities: Argotec's newest manufacturing operation has an abundance of clean, protected space to store finished goods after manufacture and prior to shipment to the customer.
- Inventory services: Argotec can provide long-term warehousing, cataloging and tracking of raw materials, regrind, scrap as well as of finished goods for shipping to the contract customer or the customer's customers on a just-in-time basis.
- Product packaging: packaging finished goods for maximum protection against physical damage and contamination, ready for shipment.
- Product labeling: Argotec can provide custom product (brand) labeling, minimizing or eliminating any link to our identity or brands.
- Customer service: Argotec has the organization necessary to provide complete fulfillment service, including customer service representatives who accept and process orders placed direct by the contract customer's customers.
- Shipping: we expedite shipping of finished goods to contract customer or to secondary end users (the customer's customers).
- Documentation: Argotec can provide a complete electronic or hard copy record of every stage of the raw materials handling, blending, manufacturing, quality control, inventory, customer service and shipping processes.
To start the toll process, click here to describe your need. Or simply give us a call at 413-772-2564 or e-mail your program needs to email@example.com. You may also wish to request our two-way non-disclosure agreement or send us your own. Once past those preliminaries, we can move ahead in earnest to build a toll program that will satisfy your specific requirements.
Click here to download the white paper, "Selecting a Toll (Contract) Manufacturer to Produce Proprietary TPU Film & Sheet."
Click here to download Argotec's Toll Manufacturing Brochure.