About Us > History

The Little Company That Can...
  
FillTech USA is located in the quaint town of Rockwell, NC, and is one of the last surviving manufacturing facilities in the area. In 2008, FillTech Incorporated fell victim to the struggling economy and was on the brink of closing its doors. But, after a divine encounter with one of its employees, a vision for the town of Rockwell and its citizens was deeply embedded in the heart of a stranger.

It all began in April of 2008, when Dennis and Cookie Jones learned through a North Carolina chemist that FillTech, Inc. was closing its doors and in a last ditch effort was seeking a buyer. Being in the aesthetic industry and the product development business for the past 30+ years, Dennis and his wife Cookie were encouraged to explore the opportunity, so they scheduled an appointment and headed from Virginia Beach, VA, to Rockwell.

After meeting with two of the previous four owners, Dennis and Cookie realized that FillTech had never been computerized and that there was very little documentation available to them concerning the company’s financial history and its performance. This made it difficult for them to get their hands around the business, so after a two hour meeting, they decided that there were too many unknowns and declined the purchase offer presented to them. As they walked across the parking lot heading to their car, Dennis asked one of the owners if they could poke their heads inside the manufacturing plant. After being granted permission, they went inside and found 12 women standing at conveyor lines working as hard as they could work. Most of these women had been working for FillTech for most of their working years, all were working through a temporary staffing service and all were earning minimum wage with no benefits…unfortunately, this is typically the case in the manufacturing industry.
 
As Dennis and Cookie entered the plant, Wanda, the plant manager walked towards them. After introducing themselves to her, Wanda simple asked, “Are you thinking about buying the plant?” Up to that point, this was the furthest thing from their minds, but when they saw the look of fear and despair in her eyes, Dennis responded by saying, “Wanda, Cookie and I will go home and pray about this, but if the Lord put it on our hearts to purchase the company, the first thing that we would want to do is to convert all of the temporary workers to permanent employees. Secondly, we would put a profit sharing plan in place so that every employee shares in the success and growth of the company…we would either sink or swim together.” Dennis then asked Wanda if she thought any of the women would have a problem with these changes. When Wanda looked up, tears were running down her face and she humbly asked, “You mean you would want us?” Both Dennis and Cookie were stunned at her words and immediately responded by saying, “You bet we would!” At that moment, God dropped a vision and an excitement in their hearts, not only for the 12 women at FillTech but also for the town of Rockwell. Dennis and Cookie felt that they were being given an opportunity to be a part in helping to build and change a community, and by doing so, make a difference in the lives of the people. For the past 25 years, Dennis and Cookie have traveled to the outskirts of Russia, China and Africa to establish churches and do missions work, but on that day, they sensed that Rockwell, NC had just become their new mission field.

Shortly after their visit to Rockwell, they began the due diligence process, mortgaged their home, and on May 23, 2008, became the proud owners of the new FillTech USA, LLC! A long-time friend and business associate learned of their new venture, caught the vision, and asked if he could be a part of FillTech USA. With his wife, Elaine and two young daughters in tow, Scott Hughes moved from Portland, OR, set up residence in North Carolina and became FillTech USA’s Chief Operations Officer. In addition, one of the previous owners, Rita Lefler, who was instrumental and extremely helpful in the transition, was offered ownership in the new company and was appointed Director of Operations. And Betty Noble, a chemist of over 35 years, is also a partner and vital part of FillTech USA. Betty oversees new product development and regulatory affairs for FillTech.

As promised, Dennis and Cookie first implemented a profit sharing plan, met with each worker one-on-one, dissolved their contracts with the temporary staffing agency, converted each from a temporary employment status to a permanent status and gave each employee a substantial pay increase.

Next came the tedious task of sifting through boxes and boxes of paperwork. Unfortunately, after the dust had settled, Dennis and Cookie realized that FillTech did not have the customers they had anticipated, and in fact had only one purchase order to fulfill…and after that…nothing. They then met with their new staff, explained the situation, sent everyone home for a seven week “vacation” (with full pay), and for the next seven weeks, Dennis, Cookie and Scott went to work to rebuild FillTech USA.

Over the past two years, the owners and staff of FillTech USA have watched in amazement to see FillTech grow from nothing to a viable player in the manufacturing industry. FillTech USA is an FDA/cGMP compliant manufacturing facility that is fully registered to produce OTC pharmaceuticals, SPF and non-SPF products and a variety of consumer specialty products. Today, FillTech USA manufacturers some of the highest quality personal care products on the market, and is pleased to report that among their many customers, they now have contracts with a national retail chain, two national drug chains and three grocery chains. In addition to manufacturing lips balms, FillTech USA has expanded their capabilities to include liquid vitamin supplements, hand sanitizers, topical anesthetics, lotions, sunscreens, mouthwash, and many other unique products. And while they are very thankful for the progress so far, their vision for FillTech USA is far from being realized. While others in the industry are laying-off and cutting back, FillTech USA finds itself with unprecedented opportunities and is on the threshold of expansion and major growth.

From day one, Dennis and Cookie’s philosophy has been; it’s not just about building a business, but about building the lives of others, which in turn builds businesses that do great things in the community. “Despite today’s troubled and uncertain economy, Dennis says, God has been true to the vision He placed in our hearts, and through the dedication and hard work of our faithful staff, FillTech USA has proven to be the little company that can!” 
 
Classifications

  • Small Business
  • Woman Owned
  • HUBZone

Registrations/Certifications

  • cGMP Compliant
  • Food and Drug Administration Approved Facility
  • Central Contractor Registration
     
     
Corporate Office    •    757.436.4774     •    1025 Executive Blvd., Ste. 112, Chesapeake, VA 23320
Operations Office    •    704.279.4300        380 Palmer Rd, Rockwell, NC 28138