- The hand sanitizer project initiated by Sir Jim Ratcliffe, owner and chairman of the chemical company INEOS, is being supported by cycling team TEAM INEOS, who won the Tour de France last year.
- Servais Knaven, team leader with TEAM INEOS and winner of the renowned cycling classic Paris-Roubaix, supports the initiative in Belgium, where he lives.
- Deliveries of hand sanitizer to Belgian care institutions started today, in amongst others the regions Antwerp and Namur. The hand sanitizer is being produced in INEOS’ new production plant in Etain in Northern France, which has been operational since the end of last week. It is the fourth new European production line in a row, started up by INEOS to cover the shortage of hand gel in Europe.
- INEOS is now producing almost 300 different products that are being used in medicines, test kits, respirators and protective clothing in the fight against the Corona virus.
Sir Jim Ratcliffe, founder and chairman of INEOS, says, “Getting the hand sanitiser into production in just ten days was a huge team effort and Team INEOS, led by Sir Dave Brailsford have made a great contribution alongside the rest of the INEOS family. We knew there was a massive shortage of hand sanitisers across Europe and that speed was crucial. We believe these INEOS sanitisers will play a key part in the fight against the virus, helping protect front line hospital staff and vulnerable people across the country. We are also committed to doing our part in the fight against Corona in Belgium, where INEOS was born and where we have important production sites.”
INEOS, one of the largest chemical companies in the world, started its first hand sanitizer deliveries today to care institutions in Belgium, with logistical help from members of the cycling team TEAM INEOS.
All of INEOS nine polymer and chemical divisions are currently supplying products for the medical and pharmaceutical industries and several of them are being used in the development of Corona virus vaccines and treatments.
The hand sanitizer project is a symbiosis of INEOS’ manufacturing know-how and entrepreneurial spirit led by Sir Jim Ratcliffe and the racing team logistics led by Sir Dave Brailsford, team leader of Team INEOS. This initiative has brought together the very best of INEOS and its teams in a race against the clock.
In hardly 10 days INEOS managed to build hand sanitizer plants from scratch in Newton Aycliffe in the United Kingdom, in Herne in Germany and Lavéra and Etain in southern and northern France.
INEOS is first focusing on meeting the needs of front line medical and care services before making “pocket bottle” hand sanitisers available for people’s personal use. These will all be produced to World Health Organisation specifications.
Sir Dave Brailsford, Team Principal, Team INEOS, says, “Governments have asked industry to help and INEOS was proud to answer the call. Team INEOS is used to moving at speed but ten days from start to finish for four plants already was incredibly tight. We are all in this together and I am grateful to everyone in the entire INEOS family for their hands-on approach to getting the job done.”
“In standard circumstances, it’s the sports stars and professional artists that everyone comes to see and for whom we support. Today, the roles are reversed and it’s the healthcare workers who deliver exceptional performance: frontline staff, hospital staff, nurses in residential care centres, home care workers now give the best of themselves and we’re the spectators who encourage them. I see a mobilization of staff from the sports world to support the healthcare sector and that is a real privilege. I am happy that Team INEOS can mean something at a time when it really makes a difference”.
INEOS produces chemicals that go into antibiotics, paracetamol, anti-inflammatories, anti-virals, aspirin and the reagent chemicals that go into testing kits. We’re producing the plastics going into medical equipment, face masks, ventilators, sterile gloves, eye visors and our acetonitrile is used in essential pharmaceutical analysis in the procedures necessary to find a vaccine. The list goes on and on.
Sir Jim Ratcliffe, founder and chairman of INEOS adds, “INEOS is a company with enormous resources and manufacturing skills. We are planning to produce a million bottles of hand sanitiser a month from each of our plants in France, Germany and the UK. If we can find other ways to help in the Coronavirus battle, we remain absolutely committed to playing our part”.