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SML Produced 1.4 Billion Tags for Retailers in 2017

The company’s says its growth in RFID technology for the retail market has exceeded the industry-wide 30 percent annual rise and that this indicates its focus on agility, using a large network of service bureaus, is paying off.
By Claire Swedberg
Tags: Retail

Additionally, they are increasingly depending on RFID technology to ensure a highly visible supply chain to ensure the inventory levels can meet customer demands. For both those reasons, retailers and brands are launching RFID tagging processes in new sites – both established manufacturing sites, as well as new sites around the world.

“We’re continuing to see retailers looking for more places around the world to manufacture their products, and do so with reduced cycle times,” Frew says.

The ability to quickly open new service bureaus comes from SML’s proprietary encoding and data management systems that are easy to deploy, Frew says. “We have our own proprietary high-speed encoding system on a cell model,” he says. The company can install one or multiple cells of encoding machines and related software to get the system up and running for encoding of high volumes of labels.

The company attributes its own growth in RFID sales to the high quality of its inlays as well, Frew says, in addition to offering a broad spectrum of inlay and label form factors from hangtags or adhesive labels to integrated price tickets and sewn-in labels.

Frew predicts that the rate of growth for the industry and for SML will continue at a steady pace over the next three years. “We’re going to see significant growth year over year.” He says, “I think we’ll be looking back in 2020 and we’ll see that more retailers have begun saying ‘I must have [item-level RFID] to remain competitive’.”

In the meantime, SML says it has more technology offerings in the works, although Frew declined to provide specifics yet.

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