Toronto, ON, December 9th, 2020 - O2 Industries, a leading manufacturer of reusable respirators since 2014, today announced the upcoming launch of a premium, medical-grade respirator with the safety and practical needs of healthcare workers at the forefront of its design. The launch announcement follows the receipt of a $1.8 million grant from the Government of Ontario’s Ontario Together fund, which invests in the production of innovative, world-class PPE locally in Ontario.
“We’re thrilled that the Government of Ontario has identified O2 Industries as the organization to bring high-grade medical respirators to healthcare professionals on a mass scale,” said co-founder and CEO of O2 Industries, Peter Whitby. “With a global shortage of PPE, Canadian healthcare workers need access to premium respiratory protection produced here at home. This grant will support production and distribution of an Ontario-made medical respirator designed to keep healthcare workers safe, without compromising on comfort or breathability.”
The $1.8 million grant was announced today by Premier Doug Ford and O2 Industries CEO Peter Whitby during a visit to O2 Industries’ headquarters in Kitchener, Ontario. In exchange for the $1.8 million grant, O2 Industries will input $6.9 million into engineering, wages, tooling and equipment for production of the medical respirator. The combined funds will cover phase 1 of production of the respirator at the Jomi manufacturing centre in Barrie, Ontario, with the capacity to produce 2 million respirators per year. The agreement also gives Ontario first rights over initial production of the medical respirators.
“As our fight against COVID-19 continues, we need Ontario’s top-notch entrepreneurs and innovators to continue to work with us and help mobilize our manufacturing and innovation might,” said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. “That’s why we are supporting companies like O2 Canada, to provide a made-in-Ontario solution to reduce our dependence on foreign supply chains, strengthen our domestic capacity and be better prepared for the future.”
“As Premier, I vowed that we would never again have to rely on other jurisdictions for our critical health supplies. We can make anything we need right here in Ontario and O2 Industries has provided clear proof of that,” said Doug Ford, Premier of Ontario. “I want to thank Peter and his team for stepping up to produce millions of Ontario-made medical-grade respirators to protect our frontline healthcare heroes and help them continue to save lives.”
The new medical respirator is designed to reduce the potential for cross-contamination in the medical field through its innovative dual-filter design. Its easy-to-adjust strap ensures a safe and secure face seal, while providing the comfort needed for long-term wear. The respirator can be easily disinfected and sterilized, making it ideal for mass use in the healthcare space. Production of O2 Industries’ medical respirator will begin in January 2021, with funding closing in March 2021.
About O2 Industries
Established in 2014, O2 Industries is a Canadian respiratory protection company based in Kitchener, Ontario. Grown from a desire to make a difference in people's lives and a passion to improve air quality around the world, our innovative respirators protect you from harmful particles, so you can breathe easier, feel healthier, and perform your best.
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