How to choose the right manufacturer?

Hi,

I spent months looking for the right manufacturer. My expectation was:
- location in the EU - this is my condition, because I believe that with a manufacturer outside the EU there may be problems with the regulatory issues and of course the cost of transportation is also important,
- low MOQ - 5000 pcs or below,
- GMP certification,
- possibility of transfer of IP rights,
- basic ingredients supplied by the manufacturer - I have no problem with buying not popular ingredients needed only for me, but buying every single ingredient, including preservatives and glycerin, is dramatically unprofitable, especially since many of them I would not be able to use during their shelf life.

Unfortunately, I have not found a company that would meet all these requirements. There is no problem with the first three points, but it looks like the last two points are contradictory.
If I am able to find a company with a large ingredients inventory, they don't offer transfer of IP rights (even for formulations that would be made special for me). It could be a problem for me if the cooperation is unsuccessful, and it would then require additional costs for a new development in another company.
Companies that are focused mainly on unique formulations offer the transfer of IP rights, but usually they don't have their own ingredients, and I would have to purchase all of them on my own. Usually such companies are also small companies and here I have some doubts whether such a company can be trustworthy and how it would behave if for example the product would hit the market and it would turn out to be unstable (I have bought a separated emulsion several times, so it is possible ). On the other hand, I'm afraid that if you are a small customer in a large company, then you will still be a second-class customer and you won't get as much attention as others anyway.

I'm a bit stuck with making a decision, so I want to ask what you think about it. Maybe there are other factors I should consider?


Comments

  • As the co-founder of a skincare manufacturing company located outside of the EU, I think you have made a number of erroneous assumptions.

    First, 'a manufacturer outside the EU there may be problems with the regulatory issues' is not correct. We operate a GMP-certified facility in Malaysia, and conforming to EU standards is not a challenge for us.

    Second. 'cost of transport' can be offset by lower manufacturing costs.

    Third, 'low MOQ - 5000 pcs or below' is not an issue for a small manufacturer like ourselves. We specialise in small indie startups that we support and watch grow larger.

    Fourth, 'possibility of transfer of IP rights,' is always on the table. But I question what protection this provides you.

    Fifth, the purchase of ingredients. We never require customers to purchase ingredients. This is our function and role.

    We are probably not the right manufacturer for you. And to answer your question 'I'm a bit stuck with making a decision, so I want to ask what you think about it. Maybe there are other factors I should consider?' .....my suggestion is to keep looking for a manufacturer, cast your net wider, and engage in meaningful dialogue without having too many misconceptions,




    Dr. Mike Thair
    Cofounder & Chief Formulator
    Indochine Natural
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