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How Smart Companies are Repurposing to Fight the Coronavirus

  • Date Published
  • Categories Blog
  • Reading Time 3-Minute Read

The COVID-19 crisis and subsequent shutdowns have left many of us feeling a little helpless as we do our part to slow the spread of the coronavirus. What can we do but stay home, keep our distance and take precautions?

Meanwhile, many businesses are struggling to stay afloat through the crisis, adding to the helpless feeling for many business owners and leaders. But for many businesses, there are ways to channel that apprehension into the effort to fight the spread of the coronavirus. Below you’ll find some of the most innovative approaches business leaders are using to lend a hand. We hope they’ll inspire you to consider what you can do to stem the tide.

Hedley & Bennett’s Coronavirus Response

The apron and chef gear brand Hedley & Bennett saw an opportunity when the owner realized that the company’s production facilities could be used to make desperately needed face masks. Recognizing that cloth masks do little to stop the coronavirus particles from reaching the wearer, Hedley & Bennett designed a mask with an insert for a HEPA filter. Masks can be ordered for personal use for $22 apiece. Plus, with every order, Hedley & Bennett donates a mask to people who are working on the front lines of the coronavirus crisis “doctors, nurses, first responders, grocery store employees, restaurant workers, and all others who are putting their lives on the line for us every day.”

Decathlon’s Coronavirus Response

Sporting goods maker/retailer Decathlon, which operates in the hard-hit Italian market, has quietly been addressing the lack of respirators in Italy by helping researchers repurpose their equipment. Decathlon has worked with The Institute of Studies for the Integration of Systems (Isinnova) to retrofit snorkeling masks the company makes with a specially made, 3D printed valve that Isinnova developed to turn the mask into an emergency ventilator mask. Isinnova successfully tested a prototype in an Italian hospital and is optimistic that the retrofitted mask design can be replicated to address the shortage of ventilators in places like Italy where healthcare systems are overtaxed by the coronavirus outbreak.


Chiquita’s Coronavirus Response

Proving that you don’t have to change your product to help, banana brand, Chiquita, used their most valuable brand asset, Miss Chiquita, to raise awareness about social distancing. The iconic brand mascot was nowhere to be found in a logo released by Chiquita on Instagram recently. The reason why? As Chiquita announced on their Instagram, “she’s social distancing at home, and we hope you are too.”


Anheuser-Busch InBev’s Coronavirus Response

No- and low-alcohol beers currently make up 8% of Anheuser-Busch InBev’s volume. As the world’s largest beer company, that is a significant amount of beer that needs to be processed to remove the alcohol. As a result, the company has enough alcohol to make 1 million bottles of sanitizer that are being donated around the world. Hand sanitizing gel is being distributed to hospitals that are in need in the Americas, while the company’s European brands are producing disinfectant throughout the continent.

Your Turn

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