Tell us a little about the history of your company.
As a bit of background, our Boston, MA based company, Schawbel Technologies LLC, has a 30-plus year track record of technological innovation and consumer product development. With a company goal of bringing comfort to the outdoors, the ThermaCELL Heated Insoles were a natural addition to the product collection that spans over three decades. For the industrial market, our objective is to make the worker safer and more productive in cold and inclement environments.
What has been your company’s business strategy to gain market share?
The key to gaining – and keeping – market share is innovation. We always want to stay one step ahead of our competition and other companies trying to enter the heated products market. We have a focused team of engineers constantly improving existing products and developing new products and technologies. Our goal is always to offer the best product possible to the end-user.
Additionally, we will continue to invest in development, sales and marketing to support our distributor partners.
Describe the core branded products of your company.
The revolutionary ThermaCELL Heated Insoles product line has been tremendously successful in the U.S. and Canada. We currently sell our products to retailers such as Cabela’s, Bass Pro Shops, Canadian Tire, Mark’s and L.L. Bean; among many others. ThermaCELL Heated Insoles are a premium item, which are highly reliable, convenient and durable, with the required governmental certifications. We plan to capitalize on our retail brand success as we introduce our wireless remote control heated insoles to local, regional and national distributors of industrial safety products.
Unique features of our original and new ProFLEX Heated Insoles include:
• Regulated Heat via wireless remote control
• Three Temperature Settings
• Water Resistant
• Lithium-Ion Polymer Batteries that will last up to 5 hours per charge
• Custom Fit (5 sizes that can be trimmed to fit)
• Quality Tested by SATRA Technology- one of the world’s largest, professional footwear laboratories for testing, research, and development.
• Removable, Rechargeable Battery (ProFLEX model)
• Ultra Flexible Material (ProFLEX model)
• USB Charging (ProFLEX model)
• 3rd party testing to meet and/or exceed all governmental requirements (Intertek)
ThermaCELL Heat Packs are being introduced in 2015 to bring localized warmth to any spot on the body where it is needed. With two sizes to choose from – Hand Warmers (smaller) and Pocket Warmers (larger) – these battery-operated heat packs will be promoted heavily in 2015 and beyond as well.
How do distributors contribute to your success in the marketplace?
Distributors are the key to building product awareness, credibility and sales. They are the subject experts and have built the relationship and trust with the end-users. Our success begins and ends with these strong relationships with our distributor partners
Do you offer distributors training and other value-added services?
Schawbel trains every single distributor that we work with. Whenever possible, we have a sales person conduct these training sessions in person. Training is also handled through video and phone conferences. Additionally, we have brochures tailored to the industrial market, have created sales kits and special POP displays that are offered to distributors to assist in educating the customer.
What business characteristics do you look for when selecting to work with a distributor?
When choosing distributors, we look for long-term business partners that have the knowledge of the customers’ needs and the ability to provide solutions to them. We look for distributors who want to bring new/innovative solutions to cold stress problems. It’s also great when they have complementary products to ours such as footwear, footwear accessories and other heating products – because they are already providing cold stress solutions to end-users.
Do you have any recent news about new facilities or new personnel to report?
In May of 2015, Schawbel Technologies LLC moved to a new office located in Burlington, MA. This 6,500-foot facility is Schawbel’s Worldwide Headquarters for marketing, sales, product development, engineering, finance, administration, and product management.
Describe your current financial picture.
Schawbel, a privately held company, has had a 30+ year successful track record of financial success with available capital to fund product development and channel expansion.
What should distributors know about your company’s future, in terms of short- and long-range plans?
Schawbel Technologies LLC is here for the long haul. Short-term future plans include ensuring product quality is at the highest level, building relationships with distributors and building brand awareness through marketing, advertising and promotional efforts. For the longer term, we will continue to invest heavily in new technologies and develop products that provide solutions for heat and cold stress.