What impact has COVID-19 had on Diversey? Karel van Gorp, Managing Director of Diversey Benelux, illustrates this simply with the number 25. "At one point, demand for our disinfectants was 25 times greater than the production capacity. This is really unprecedented".
Diversey has specialized in cleaning, hygiene, disinfection in the broadest sense of the word for over a century. Van Gorp: "We are a B2B supplier - our clients are companies and institutions, such as the catering industry, food service, retail, government, healthcare and cleaning companies. We supply products and machines as well as offering services, such as training."
Hygiene is crucial
'Let's live' is Diversey's ethos. The company's mission took on an extra dimension this year due to the corona crisis. "COVID-19 has significantly increased the relevance of our industry," Van Gorp explains. "Hygiene and cleaning play a crucial role in the fight against the corona virus."
Diversey took several steps when the impact of COVID-19 became apparent. Van Gorp: "First of all, we took measures to ensure our people's safety. We also received many queries from our clients. The industries we serve have had to handle the corona crisis in many different ways. A number of them came to a standstill because the government decided that some sectors had to be closed, such as the catering industry. In other branches things simply got out of hand, such as in healthcare and retail." When COVID-19 turned into a pandemic, Diversey showcased its expertise. "In this situation it is important to take up your role and help keep society going," says Van Gorp. "Everything starts with knowledge and sharing it. We can boast more than a century of cleaning and hygiene expertise. It's about really helping the client with his or her specific queries."
Van Gorp illustrates this with an example. "We received a lot of queries from the retail sector. Supermarkets wondered what to do to ensure the safety of their staff and clients. We were able to provide very specific help, for example with the development of protocols for disinfecting your hands on arrival. In addition to that, we identified the greatest risk carriers. So, which things do people touch a lot? Consider shopping carts, regrigerator handles, etcetera. We provided specific advice on this: What do you need to clean and disinfect? How frequently must you do this and how do you do it?"
The demnad varied per industry. Some industries were seeking concrete tools, linked to resources, to guarantee the safety of staff and clients, while hospitals mainly needed products. Diversey also shared its knowledge in other areas and assumed its social responsibility. When the government announced relaxation, and schools and catering establishments, among others, reopened, Diversey made things such as disinfection protocols available free of charge.
The high demand for products posed challenges for Diversey. It was sometimes a puzzele to obtain enough raw materials and to get them to their destination. Logistics service providers are an essential link in that chain. Nijhof-Wassink now provides Diversey with the transport of ethanol, an important ingredient for disinfectants.
We have been working together for decades and this special time requires exceptional solutions. Flexibility, availibility to switch quickly and proactive handling describe our cooperation. We both care about reliability and fulfilling agreements. It's where you can count on.
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