Purell, the inventor of the hand sanitizer, anticipates the demand for the cleaning product will continue to grow due to the pre-coronavirus pandemic as the world emerges from the biggest global health crisis in a century.
Sales of the company’s hand sanitizer have risen by triple digits in the wake of the pandemic, and Carey Jaros, CEO of Purell’s parent company Gojo Industries, told CNBC on Wednesday that she anticipates business will remain significantly higher than usual in the future.
“It will not be at the level of last year, but it will be exponentially higher than 2019,” said Jaros, who has headed the private company since January 2020, to “Closing Bell”.
Purell reports that hand sanitizer sales increased 568% year over year to $ 1.5 billion through February. To meet the unprecedented demand for cleaning products as consumers looked for ways to reduce their chances of contracting Covid-19, the company invested $ 400 million in expanding production capacity, increasing operations on production around the clock and hired more than 500 new employees last year.
The capital investment in 2020 was roughly ten times what Purell spends in a typical year, Jaros said. The number of plants in North America tripled, giving the company the ability to manufacture and meet demand during and after the health crisis, she said.
In the post-pandemic era, there will be a “new normal” defined by “visible hygiene” and trusted brands, according to Jaros, who noted that spaces such as shops and offices have the ability to maintain disinfection stations.
“I firmly believe that the combination of visible hygiene, which is disinfectant dispensers that are really visible everywhere customers can see them, and the power of the Purell brand means that demand is absolutely sustained,” said Jaros.
Purell isn’t the only cleaning company expecting the business to maintain its shape after Covid takes control.
Procter & Gamble Chairman and CEO David Taylor said late last month that while consumers are less likely to buy and hoard supplies than last year, buying cleaning products will be a priority for at least an “extended period after the pandemic.” becomes . “
Clorox is also expanding production, making 1.5 million canisters a day, up from 1 million last quarter, CEO Linda Rendle said in February.