FIGHTING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
Michelin mobilizes on all fronts for the production of mouth masks and face shields: 10 factories in Europe will start production from April 2020, BYD in Shenzhen converts a factory for smartphones into a facility for producing face masks and disinfecting gel. CNH Industrial has donated 2 million US-dollar, Daimler has put its 3D-printers at disposal of manufacturers of medical equipment. It are some of the many initiatives to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.
A race against the clock has started worldwide to increase the number of available face masks. The Michelin Group has mobilized the innovation capacity of its teams and expertise in research, materials, manufacturing, scientific observation etc. for the development, production and supply of various types of masks. Michelin starts producing surgical masks in ten of its European factories where the tyre manufacturer will eventually produce nearly 400,000 class 1 surgical mouth masks every week. European capacity will be expanded in the coming weeks thanks to the implementation of similar initiatives in North America.
BYD announced that it has opened world's largest mass-produced face-mask production facility in Shenzhen where it is able to produce no less than five million units daily and 300,000 bottles of disinfectant every day. Already on February 8, the newly-built production lines at one of BYD's industrial centres in Shenzhen started to produce critical supplies of face-masks and disinfectant bottles, with hundreds of staff working both day and night shifts around the clock. A special task force was appointed by BYD Chairman and President, Wang Chuanfu, consisting of leaders from different business divisions and more than 3,000 engineers involved in research and development, design, processing and other roles. Face-mask production requires an impeccably clean and sterile environment and equipment, which BYD's had with its assembly facilities of smartphones. The most pertinent challenge was the rapid expansion of its production capacity to meet the demand for these much-needed items. The company was making about five to ten new face-mask-producing machines on a daily basis, resulting in an increase of the number of face-masks produced at 300,000 to 500,000 units per day. It currently has a total production capacity of five million face-masks per day, which is equivalent to a quarter of China's entire production capacity in early February. “A production line for high-quality face masks requires about 1,300 parts for various gears, chains, and rollers, 90% of which are BYD's self-made parts," said Sherry Li, Director General of BYD's President Office.
CNH Industrial has taken decisive steps in the fight against COVID-19, focusing on employees’ health and the local communities where it does business. To this end, the Company is donating 2 million US-dollars to the CNH Industrial Foundation and to other charitable projects throughout the world, with a focus on supporting individuals and communities impacted by the virus.
This pledge is in addition to the Company’s ongoing donations of medical equipment supplies, including ventilators, personal protective equipment, electrical generators and ambulances, to healthcare providers in the regions in which the Company operates.