A Medical Aesthetic Device Case Study: Candela

Candela is driven by an unwavering focus on quality and innovation. For more than 50 years, the company has pioneered breakthroughs using energy-based laser devices for treating a broad range of conditions, from hair removal and wrinkle reduction to traumatic scarring involving wounded warriors and burn victims.

When applied to the epidermis, dermis and subcutaneous skin layers, Candela’s laser technology awakens the body’s own natural healing process by first creating dermal wounds to the skin which in turn stimulate the production of 3 healing skin elements: collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid for improved skin results. With more than 700 patents and over 50,000 medical devices deployed worldwide, Candela’s growth is powered by an unwavering commitment and passion for quality.

“Quality is the cornerstone of everything we do,” Mary Trout, chief commercial officer of Candela, affirmed. “We don’t win at Candela unless our customers win, which means that patients have a treatment that is clinically sound with high efficacy and great results.”

This dedication to quality has helped the brand earn a stellar reputation among dermatologists around the world and fuel its rapid growth trajectory. As enthusiasm for Candela's products gained momentum it became clear to company management that their existing manufacturing partner was not able to keep pace. In order to best support the company's growth and meet the dramatic increase in demand they would need a new partner.

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Candela & Jabil

Finding a Manufacturing Partner for Medical Devices

“We identified early on that Candela neither had the capacity nor the capabilities from a manufacturing and supply chain standpoint to achieve our long-term goals,” Candela’s Chief Operating Officer Todd Van Horn said. 

To meet its rigorous growth and quality requirements, Candela issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) for a manufacturing partner that would be both a good cultural match for the company, and with a proven track record delivering innovative solutions. Candela’s need was growth, but on their terms. 

The company’s CEO, Geoff Crouse, explained, “My philosophy is that the number one criteria of a partner would be somebody that could help us innovate and deliver the highest quality products in the market.”

Equally important was selecting a partner with proven healthcare experience and the ability to scale readily and rapidly—from all aspects of product design through manufacturing and delivery. 

“We view ourselves as a medical device company, and we wanted a medical device-capable partner,” Crouse added. “Jabil Healthcare brought that to the table.”

What stood out most for Candela was Jabil Healthcare’s extensive experience in the medical devices sector, which blends world-class manufacturing and supply chain intelligence with exceptional engineering and product design prowess. 

“Jabil brought us an incredible amount of manufacturing, supply management and quality expertise, which is one of the reasons we chose them as a partner,” Van Horn recalled. “Ultimately, that results in a higher quality product with fewer issues and a better customer experience.”

Consolidating Manufacturing and Supply Chain Operations

Shifts in consumer demand and perception can send ripples throughout a company’s operations, sometimes overnight. Addressing change requires supply chain management that leverages market intelligence, identifying potential problems within the supply chain before they intensify.

An elastic and proactive response to market conditions is one of the most critical competencies a manufacturing partner brings to the table. Faced with extremely aggressive timelines, Jabil Healthcare acted decisively for Candela, quickly mobilizing highly qualified transfer teams to consolidate the company’s manufacturing and supply chain operations into a Jabil Healthcare facility in Tijuana, Mexico. 

“Through the transfer process, Jabil was able to catalyze its expertise,” Van Horn said. “They guided innovation in terms of process improvements, manufacturing best practices and quality.” 

In less than 18 months, Jabil Healthcare built out manufacturing lines to produce 11 Candela products, far exceeding expectations. Not only did the collective teams meet aggressive deadlines, but they also transferred complex capital equipment, ramped volume manufacturing and met rigorous product quality requirements. 

“I was fascinated when I visited Jabil Healthcare,” Trout remembered. “Being able to monitor the entire manufacturing process was great, as well as looking back and seeing step-by-step where things went well, along with where we could improve not only device designs but also the way they’re manufactured.”

Early and continuous engagement with Candela has helped ensure that all manufacturing challenges have been anticipated and addressed. Jabil's expertise managing global supply chains has been vital to Candela product launches, ensuring the most consistent and economical supply of core components. As Candela and many other companies across the healthcare sector face supply chain headwinds, Jabil has mobilized procurement and supply sourcing experts to proactively stay ahead of challenges and address any weak links.

“Jabil’s supply chain management team identified suppliers who couldn’t match our ramp and capacity goals,” Van Horn said. “They then found and qualified new ones to give us the strength and resilience to weather a challenging environment, which is absolutely critical.”

Candela has also been vocal about the benefits of Jabil's Workcell Model. Planning, procurement, manufacturing and quality control are all overseen by a dedicated cross-functional team overseeing all aspects of the project. As a result, Jabil Healthcare has been well-positioned to manage the business across multiple manufacturing locations for Candela, including a facility in Massachusetts, a third-party manufacturer in Israel and a newly acquired company in Denmark.

“The flexibility that Jabil brought was a huge asset,” Crouse said. “When we looked at our manufacturing footprint, there was a ton of complexity. It’s very difficult for us to create an efficient global supply chain and logistics network. In working with Jabil Healthcare, we were able to evaluate on a global scale what we wanted our manufacturing footprint to look like.”

Jabil Healthcare’s customer-first approach complements Candela’s own unwavering dedication to their customers, counting on delivery of the company’s results-driven medical aesthetic devices. 

“Our brand promise is ‘Science, Results, Trust.’ Where Jabil Healthcare comes in is trust,” Crouse concluded. “When Jabil talks about Candela, you can feel the pride, and we see they share our focus on quality.”