In 1999, Reynolds Packaging began in a garage on Main Street in Green Bay. When delivery trucks began blocking the neighbors’ driveways, the owners knew it was time to expand. In 2004, the company relocated to a 2,000 square-foot building in order to continue producing their packaging products at high speeds. Then in 2019, co-owners Lisa and Kelly Reynolds expanded again, this time purchasing and renovating a facility located in Ashwaubenon.
What started as a one-man operation now employs 15 people. The company primarily produces flexible packaging with a focus on food products. They’ve created everything from traditional stand-up pouches to complicated resins for press-to-close zipper bags and sustainable packaging. One of Lisa and Kelly’s goals is to bring awareness to the need for eco-friendly materials, which is especially important in the area of Green Bay known as a paper mecca.
The couple originally came to the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in 2014, seeking help with reaching their financial goals. They sought funding for their first machines. They returned to the SBDC in 2019, when they needed to strategize a business plan to manage their growth. “Working with David Stauffacher at the SBDC was great! He has a wealth of knowledge and found so many avenues to help us reach our goals,” Lisa said.
THE COVID PIVOT
When COVID hit, they had new goals thrust upon them. They pivoted to manufacture an even wider variety of items. They converted their equipment and added a new line to manufacture masks and filters as well flexible packaging for alcohol wipes. The demand for their products was high; local hospital employees were literally waiting at the door as the masks and filters were coming off the line. Reynolds Packaging created masks using Meltblown non-woven filtration media engineered locally with a partner company.
Accomplishments with UW-Green Bay SBDC
- Growth strategies
- Funding solutions
- Business resources
It is no surprise that in December 2020, this booming business was bestowed top honors in the 2020 Marketplace Governor’s Awards competition. Reynolds Packaging was recognized for demonstrating excellence in sales growth, product innovation, employment and management.
Kelly Reynolds, COO and President, is known as the “manufacturing wizard” for his ability to design and build their own equipment. “He can make machines do things that no one else can,” said Lisa Reynolds, CEO of this woman-owned business whose focus is on the administrative, sales and financial aspects of the business. In January 2021, when the newly added production line needed a chiller to cool the material during the manufacturing process, Kelly obtained a recycled beer cooler previously used at Lambeau Field. He used his well-known ingenuity to convert the beer cooler to meet their needs.
The demand for their products continues to grow as the trend grows to produce in the United States instead of overseas. Reynolds Packaging is expecting to expand and diversify again in the next year or two, offering more rigid packaging options in addition to their traditional flexible packaging. Keep an eye out to see what this versatile manufacturing wizard does next!