VIENNA—Semperit Group is donating tens of millions of gloves to Austria in the battle against COVID-19.
The Vienna-based rubber products maker has operations in 14 countries and does business in more than 100 nations around the world.
Semperit said more than 60 million gloves will be delivered from its Sempermed production facility in Kamunting, Malaysia, on four flights operated by Austrian Airlines.
The initial "Glove-liner" flight was scheduled to land March 27. Future deliveries will last until the end of April, the company said. The Red Cross will handle distribution of the examination and protective gloves.
"We are pleased that we are able to contribute to a better management of the Corona crisis in Austria with our medical protective gloves, and we are proud of our employees, who are making this possible even in this difficult situation with their tireless efforts close to their limits," CEO Martin Fuellenbach said in a statement.
Semperit has about 6,900 workers around the world, including 3,600 in Asia and 900 in Austria at its headquarters and a production site in Wimpassing.
The company makes rubber products for both the medical and industrial sectors. They include gloves, hoses, belts, escalator handrails, construction profiles, and products used for railway applications. It was just early this year that Semperit announced plans to transform the company into what it called "an industrial rubber specialist" with plans to sell of its medical business.
The company, in late January, called it the "biggest strategic landmark decision of the past decades" that would create higher profitability.
"Despite our clear improvement of the operating performance indicators at Sempermed from the second quarter of 2019 on, we are faced with drastically intensified competitive dynamics in the Medical Sector; the capacity-based gap between us and the market leaders is growing. This is why we are firmly convinced that our medical business can be better continued and developed by different owners," Fuellenbach said in a statement at the time.