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KAMO Sees Growth in 2020 and 2021

07 June 2021
Kamo Manufacturing Co. Inc. building exterior
Jack Weinstein, the CEO of KAMO Manufacturing Co. stands in front of the Reynolds Street location. The business fared well during the pandemic and is eyeing grown opportunities. Staff photo by Charmain Z. Brackett.

Some businesses faltered during the pandemic, but KAMO came out ahead.

KAMO, a locally-owned business specializing in multiple products including breakroom, janitorial, safety, healthcare and office supplies, as well as food service and cleaning equipment, spent 2020 adapting to its customers’ needs, from lockdown to reopening, according to Harris Weinstein, KAMO president.

“A lot of our customers are in healthcare, local restaurants, federal government and education,” he said.

Early on, needs were for items such as hand sanitizers and other kinds of personal protective equipment.

Weinstein said KAMO partnered with some of its suppliers in the dental pharmaceutical industry to adapt to create hand sanitizers. Most dentists were shut down for a few months, temporarily halting the dental pharmaceuticals business. And traditional manufacturers of hand sanitizers were maxed with requests.

Also, Weinstein said they saw the need for air filtration systems and foggers early on, ordering systems before the demand so they could be shipped from overseas before the demand kicked in.

The only drawback is that now KAMO has cases of PPE still in its warehouses, but that’s fine with Weinstein, who would rather have been prepared. He knows they’ll move.

During the pandemic, the business hired several temporary employees and added permanent ones to the staff. Weinstein said KAMO’s workforce increased by 50%.

Exterior of Kamo Manufacturing building
KAMO Manufacturing Co. is located on Reynolds Street. Staff photo by Charmain Z. Brackett

KAMO’s regular business hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., but the business saw people working beginning at 5 a.m. and others working until 10 p.m. to fulfill orders.

Weinstein said they helped restaurants as they transitioned to take-out service, supplying prepackaged cutlery, take-out containers and other materials in bulk quantity.

When businesses began to reopen, KAMO again stepped in.

Weinstein serves on the boards of several nonprofits including The Family Y of the CSRA and the Golden Harvest Food Bank.

KAMO assisted The Family Y when it reopened.

Weinstein said it was important for the organization to reopen safely, so KAMO helped with hand- sanitizing stations and air purification systems, among other features.

KAMO returned its good fortune back into the community, giving $20,000 to the Family Y of the CSRA, $20,000 to University Hospital, $20,000 to Augusta University Health and $20,000 to the Golden Harvest Food Bank.

And his employees never lost a paycheck.

The business also used its partnerships in another way.

Jack Weinstein, the company’s CEO, said he worked with his rotary club and farmers through the Farmers to Families program to provide food boxes from local farmers to families who needed the food. Many churches weren’t operating their food pantries, and people needed food.

Giving back is an important part of KAMO’s business, said Jack Weinstein, who was named the Augusta Jewish Community Center’s Humanitarian of the Year in 2020.

While 2020 was good, 2021 looks even brighter. KAMO is planning an expansion into Aiken within the next three weeks, said Harris Weinstein.