S.A.Y. Industries Inc., headquartered in Leominster, Mass., manufactures and markets patented polyethylene bottles for motor oil and other products. Although the company's initials belong to chief executive officer and founder Stanley A. Young (see "The Entrepreneur as Investor," page 129), its main product is the invention of president Romilly H. Humphries. That product is the funnel-top plastic quart-size bottle for motor oil that can be found in almost any discount store, supermarket, or gas station. S.A.Y.'s bottle carries the oil for such big-name clients as Citgo, Mobil, and Texaco.
S.A.Y. recently introduced a patented second-generation plastic oil bottle, another Humphries invention. Labeled the Elephant Trunk because of its flexible nozzle and its somewhat biomorphic shape, the bottle is the company's response to consumer research indicating that most people who change their own motor oil buy two or more quarts at a time. "I expect the Elephant Trunk to take over the consumer market," says Young. "We anticipated garnering 20% of the market with our one-quart funnel-top bottle. We expect to increase that amount to 35% with the Elephant Trunk."
At the moment, the company is producing some 300,000 funnel-top bottles a day, and is gearing up for the Elephant Trunk. To facilitate its growth, Young is doubling the size of his Leominster plant and licensing European manufacturers and distributors for S.A.Y. products.
Young also is investigating the acquisition of a health-and-beauty-aids company that produces disposable plastic bottles for douche, enema, and opthalmic solutions. With the combination of vision and quirkiness that marks many successful entrepreneurs, Young has decided that S.A.Y. and the health-and-beauty company are basically in the same business.
"All it is, is a plastic bottle with liquid filling," Young says with a chuckle.