Home Internet of Things Aerospace Apparel Energy Defense Health Care Logistics Manufacturing Retail

Access This Premium Content

Options To Access This Article:

What Subscribers Are Saying

  • "Probably the best investment I've ever made."
    Steve Meizlish, President & CEO, MeizCorp Services, Inc.
  • "I have found that RFID Journal provides an objective viewpoint of RFID. It you are looking for a resource that provides insights as to the application and implications of deploying RFID, RFID Journal will meet your needs, It gives you a broad perspective of RFID, beyond the retail supply chain."
    Mike O'Shea, Director of Corporate AutoID/RFID Strategies & Technologies, Kimberly-Clark Corp.
  • "No other source provides the consistent value-added insight that Mark Robert and his staff do. In a world dominated by press release after press release, RFID Journal is developing as the one place to go to make the most sense out of the present and future of RFID in commerce."
    Bob Hurley, Project Leader for RFID, Bayer HealthCare's Consumer Care Division
  • "RFID Journal is the one go-to source for information on the latest in RFID technology."
    Bruce Keim, Director, Hewlett-Packard
  • "RFID Journal is the only source I need to keep up to the minute with the happenings in the RFID world."
    Blair Hawley, VP of Supply Chain, Remington Products Company

An Interview with Dick Cantwell

Dick Cantwell is the man behind Gillette's RFID efforts. He recently spoke to RFID Journal Editor Mark Roberti about the company's RFID projects and how he is driving adoption of the technology within Gillette.
By Bob Violino
Jun 14, 2003—June 16, 2003 -- Gillette VP Dick Cantwell has been leading the company's RFID efforts. He is also chairman of the Auto-ID Center's Board of Overseers. Cantwell was unable to appear at RFID Journal Live! because he had to make a presentation about RFID to Gillette's board. But he agreed to sit down with RFID Journal Editor Mark Roberti.

Cantwell spoke about the company's decision to purchase 500 million RFID tags from Alien Technology, the cost of those tags, the company's RFID projects, smart shelf trials and other topics.
Gillette's Cantwell

RFID Journal: Gillette has been a leader in the effort to develop the Electronic Product Code. Can you give us the background about why the company got interested in the EPC?

Cantwell: As our products move through the supply chain, we are not able to have the kind of information that allows us to know exactly where those products are at every point, from packaging to warehousing to distribution through the carrier pipeline into the retail DCs, the backroom of the store and eventually the store shelf. We see huge opportunity with the EPC to give us the ability to track our products to make sure they are on shelf when the consumer wants to buy them.

RFID Journal: There were other RFID technologies on the market. Why develop the EPC. What's special about this effort?

Cantwell: There are really three things that are special about it. One is it's a technology that will allow us to achieve low enough costs that we can eventually put tags with the EPCs on each of the 11 billion items that Gillette puts into the supply chain annually. It's a technology that's based on a standard architecture that everyone can use, so we are not talking about having competing standards or competing technologies. We can have one inventory with EPC on it. And it's based on interoperability, so everything fits together nicely for the retailer, manufacturer and consumer's benefit.

RFID Journal: Earlier this year, Gillette made headlines when it ordered 500 million RFID tags. I've heard people question whether it was a legitimate purchase or was just a way to promote EPC technology. Can you characterize the nature of the purchase?

Cantwell: It's a very real order. It's a signed contract between The Gillette Company and Alien for the purchase of half a billion Alien tags that are [EPC] compliant. As I said earlier, we put over 11 items into the supply chain annually, so while the order may seem large in the world of semiconductors or RFID, it's still only a fraction of what Gillette will eventually need. We felt we had to move forward with Alien to secure supply, to take advantage of their expertise in R&D as we develop our own capabilities, and provide a source of tags for the pilot initiatives we have underway.
To continue reading this article, please log in or choose a purchase option.

Option 1: Become a Premium Member.

One-year subscription, unlimited access to Premium Content: $189

Gain access to all of our premium content and receive 10% off RFID Reports and RFID Events!

Option 2: Purchase access to this specific article.

This article contains 2,360 words and 4 pages. Purchase Price: $19.99

Upgrade now, and you'll get immediate access to:

  • Case Studies

    Our in-dept case-study articles show you, step by step, how early adopters assessed the business case for an application, piloted it and rolled out the technology.

    Free Sample: How Cognizant Cut Costs by Deploying RFID to Track IT Assets

  • Best Practices

    The best way to avoid pitfalls is to know what best practices early adopters have already established. Our best practices have helped hundreds of companies do just that.

  • How-To Articles

    Don’t waste time trying to figure out how to RFID-enable a forklift, or deciding whether to use fixed or mobile readers. Our how-to articles provide practical advice and reliable answers to many implementation questions.

  • Features

    These informative articles focus on adoption issues, standards and other important trends in the RFID industry.

    Free Sample: Europe Is Rolling Out RFID

  • Magazine Articles

    All RFID Journal Premium Subscribers receive our bimonthly RFID Journal print magazine at no extra cost, and also have access to the complete online archive of magazine articles from past years.

Become a member today!

RFID Journal LIVE! RFID in Health Care LIVE! LatAm LIVE! Brasil LIVE! Europe RFID Connect Virtual Events RFID Journal Awards Webinars Presentations