Advertisement

Montreal company supplying North American markets with safety barriers

Click to play video: 'COVID-19: Montreal company supplying North American markets with safety barriers' COVID-19: Montreal company supplying North American markets with safety barriers
WATCH: Operating with only half its staff, Montreal manufacturer IVC has managed to double its production during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. As Global's Brayden Jagger Haines reports, the Rivière-des-Prairies factory has sold over 50,000 units of its new clear protective safety guards across Canada – May 15, 2020

Operating with only half its staff, Montreal manufacturer IVC has managed to double its production during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The Rivière-des-Prairies factory has sold over 50,000 units of its new clear protective safety guards across Canada.

“Demand is huge and they want things in 48 hours,” IVC president Nick Vardaro said.

READ MORE: Manufacturing mobile handwashing stations saves Beauharnois metal company

Since mid-March, the Vardaro family business, which specializes in retail marketing design, has converted its production to make the Plexiglas safety equipment.

The family decided to make the switch to meet the ever-growing demand.

Major companies such as Petro Canada and JC Penny are some of over 10,000 clients using the Montreal-based company’s product.

Story continues below advertisement

“Initially, it was quite challenging to wrap our hand around it but we managed to pivot so quickly,” said Josy Vardaro, ICV chief strategic officer.

While Nick Vardaro says revenues remain below normal, the transition has helped the business stay afloat during these turbulent times.

“It’s been a huge help in keeping us alive, adding oxygen to our company,” Vardaro said.

So far the company says it has made just under $2 million in profits from sales.

Prices vary depending on the clear acrylic see-through sheets, which range in size. The smallest model starts at $70 but massive free-standing walls can cost up to $450.

READ MORE: Quebec company converts self-serve windshield washer fluid dispenser into hand sanitizer pump

Stocks of the clear plastic sheets are dwindling with the need for Plexiglas material skyrocketing, according to Nick Vardaro.

“What should take three of four days now takes 10 to 12 weeks.”

Anticipating a shortage in international markets, IVC stockpiled supply.

With Quebec on the verge of a gradual reopening, the company is fielding calls from businesses interested in the safety equipment.

Story continues below advertisement

“They are getting ready,” Josy Vardaro said.

While stores and restaurants have shown interest, so, too, have local school boards.

“Everyone wants to feel safe,” she said.

READ MORE: Restaurants may never go back to ‘normal’ after COVID-19, experts say

READ MORE: Surrey company creates hat-mounted face shield to protect workers

Sponsored content