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We turned down cheaper alternatives to stick to our sustainable values

Tim Brownstone, founder of KYMIRA, has preserved the company's sustainable values
Despite cheaper options abroad, Tim Brownstone keeps 90 per cent of KYMIRA’s manufacturing in the UK

Location: Reading
Employees: 12
Founded in: 2013

The problem

Smart textiles business KYMIRA makes sportswear with high-quality material, using sustainable manufacturing methods. The team aimed to keep operations in the UK and source materials locally, to fit their sustainable values. However, this turned out to be a high cost approach. It was also a struggle to find the advanced manufacturing techniques they were looking for.

The solution

To find out if there were any processes that could be improved or cut, CEO Tim Brownstone examined each point in the KYMIRA supply chain. He worked closely with their UK manufacturers to assess the potential impact of any change and arrive at the most cost-efficient set up. 

The company ended up arranging regular bulk orders to make the costs more economical. “What we lose in having higher costs per unit, we make up for with the flexibility of our UK factory,” Tim said.

For certain products, KYMIRA relented and looked abroad. It simply wasn’t possible to find the right techniques in the UK. Rather than sacrifice on quality, the company moved the manufacturing of these products to Italy and Spain.

The results

After seven years in business, KYMIRA has stayed true to its sustainable values – 90 per cent of its manufacturing is UK-based. The company source all of their print and Point of Sale materials locally in Reading, while their R&D takes place across several UK sites. 

Maintaining its sustainable values has helped the company gain recognition as leaders in their field. The UK government has recognised KYMIRA’s R&D efforts in particular, which has helped the business build its brand.

“Today, a lot of business is about your narrative. Staying true to your mission and morals form a large part of that. Our core mission still remains throughout the business, which is to improve, change and – one day – develop technology that could save lives.”

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