Co-founder Mike Swimm talks about his company’s “obsession with operations,” and how UPS made a big difference in its growth.
“We were the first company in our industry to accurately model shipping prices on the frontend of our website. We worked with UPS early on to create accurate shipping rates that we could share with our customers before they place an order.”
– Michael Swimm
CandleScience began as a new-school business manufacturing old-school products. In fact, really old-school products. Older than the light bulb. Today, Durham, N.C.-based CandleScience is an industry leader in the candle and soap supply industry, providing raw materials such as waxes, wicks and fragrances to candle makers around the world. The company has grown from a 400-square- foot garage into a recognized brand in its field.
Delivering raw materials, and specifically widely varying weights and high quantities of product, led CandleScience to team up with UPS early on in an effort to accurately model shipping rates for the company and its customers. Company co-founder Mike Swimm says he is extremely proud to be able to consistently deliver precise shipping costs, an anomaly in this field and one reason he feels CandleScience has built trust with its customers.
As a supply company, CandleScience often needs to ship large quantities to a single client or customer. To drive continued business from these hugely important customers, UPS worked with CandleScience to add a freight option on its website. CandleScience was the first company in its industry to allow their customers to accurately rate freight shipping options online – a significant advantage for a small e-commerce company in a niche market.
CandleScience attributes some of their growth to efficiencies gained by using the UPS WorldShip® system in its warehouses. WorldShip makes it easy for them to prepare and ship products the same day the online order is received. This system helps ensures it is not only getting the correct products out the door and into the hands of its customers, but also that the company is doing it in a most efficient way. By using UPS’s carbon neutral shipping option, it also ships with the environment in mind.
A West Coast presence
But the UPS and CandleScience relationship is more than just about shipping products: it’s a logistics partnership. When CandleScience realized the benefits they could provide to customers by opening a West Coast warehouse, they also recognized that they had no idea where to put it. That’s when they called UPS. UPS took a comprehensive look at the locations of CandleScience’s West Coast customers, and helped them identify the optimal point to place their new warehouse. With customers from southern California to Colorado and up to the Pacific Northwest, UPS identified an unlikely home for CandleScience’s western warehouse – just outside Reno in Sparks, Nev. Their new West Coast base lets the company reach some of its largest customers faster, more efficiently and less expensively.
Swimm attributes the success of CandleScience to “an obsession with operations.” UPS shares that obsession, helping drive the growth and success of CandleScience into America’s leading supplier of candle-making supplies. Swimm says CandleScience is committed to delivering the best possible service, and providing innovations and products for its customers. For that, “there’s really no one we can rely on like UPS,” he says.
Want to hear more about CandleScience and their success story? UPS sat down with Mike Swimm to talk about how his business is heating up. Watch the video now.