Can you tell us more about the cancelling of customer’s pre-orders of the Virus Killer (VK) products?
Before the outbreak of the pandemic, our plan was to launch the full VK range at the end of the year 2020. However, the situation with the SARS-CoV-2 and the necessity to ensure high-quality protective equipment for all residents as quickly as possible has motivated us to speed up the launching of these products at maximum.
We wanted to give customers the opportunity to pre-order the new Virus Killer products already in mid-March. Our intention was to manage with a fierce effort to launch in mid-April. Unfortunately, unpredictable logistics caused by emergencies in other states, newly introduced customs obstructions and limited supplies of basic components caused by the extreme world demand, have spoilt all our plans. The launching was delayed by several weeks, which is why we made both fundamental and sensitive decision – we are not able to meet the deadline for pre-orders, and therefore we are returning money to our customers. If they want, we will appreciate if they come back to us when we have our products in stock, and we will be able to guarantee delivery of the goods within a few days.
We are very sorry for this non-standard situation and we will really appreciate if our customers still find favor with our products and we maintain their trust.
Of course, we sell our other products, which have top-level protection against viruses and bacteria, but they do not have the latest patented system with accelerated copper oxide.
When will the Virus Killer products be ready for distribution in the Czech republic?
Our initial estimate was the second half of April, which subsequently proved impossible, due to the escalation of measures in the world and the EU combined with the lack of production components caused by the extreme world consumption. We are now avoiding time estimates because the start of distribution is subject to a number of factors which are beyond our control.
There are two Virus Killer products – a face mask and a respirator. These are our brand-new products which, in addition to their nanofiber membrane capable to intercept up to 99.9% of viruses and bacteria, also contains accelerated copper oxide. It immediately neutralizes and thereby destroys intercepted viruses and bacteria. That created the main benefit of the accelerated copper oxide – the possibility to re-use the products with the maximum re-use time 24 hours.
In order to be able to sell the Virus Killer products in the Czech Republic, we must obtain a certificate issued by the Occupational Safety Research Institute. Due to the customs delays while importing product samples and other unexpected obstructions at borders outside our territory caused by emergency situations across Europe, we are now several weeks behind schedule.
The certification process at OSRI has not yet started. Once we receive the certificate, the product can be placed on the Czech market. We then have to submit the so-called notification to the State Institute for Drug Control.
But we already have tests on the filter functionality to intercept viruses from Nelson Labs and tests confirming the neutralization of viruses for the Virus Killer products from Microchem Laboratory, another American laboratory.
We are sparing no effort to ensure the import of the Virus Killer products from the manufacturing facility in Turkey, even though current logistics between countries are slow and complicated due to emergencies and protective measures that differ in each country.
Therefore we are satisfied that we concluded a lease contract with the city of Brno on super-clean space in Czech Technology Park, where we are preparing production of 100 000 pieces of VK masks every day.
Do you have new and valid certificates of products?
For our existing products – ReSpimask, RespiPro and RespiPro Carbon – we have all necessary certificates and notifications required by law to sell these products in the Czech Republic.
In addition, we have also more test reports with various functionality parameters, the reports are important for further innovations. An overview of these tests can be also found in the infographic.
To clarify we point out that subjects that order tests were and are different entities. One of the ordering parties in the past was our former company Redspeare, with its headquarters in the United Kingdom. Other ordering parties were and are nanofiber membrane manufacturers themselves, who supply us with their material. Last but not least, Respilon is also one of the ordering parties.
We established Redspeare at the start of our enterprise in 2013 as a legal entity in the United Kingdom so that we could enter the highly competitive Asian market as quickly as possible. Once we established sufficient reputation and the trust of customers, we founded the Respilon Group subsidiary in the Czech Republic in 2015, to which we transferred the activities from Redspeare. We were already big enough and well known to start to be seen as a successful Czech company by the international market.
The current situation with the latest Virus Killer products is following: The key technology is Israeli, the nanomaterial is from Europe, and for technical reasons the final assembly has to be done in Turkey. As the borders closed, standard transportation routes were no longer available which caused the delays. We now have test reports on the product functionality from Nelson Labs and Microchem Laboratory. However, these tests are not required by Czech legislation for entering the market. The legislation requires a certificate from the Occupational Safety Research Institute. This certification process has not yet started.
Can you tell us more about the production in Brno?
We concluded a lease contract with the city of Brno on super-clean space in Czech Technology Park and we were able to start preparations for the production here in the Czech Republic. We plan to produce daily 30 000 pieces of RespiPro VK and 70 000 pieces of ReSpimask VK in three-shift operation. We are now waiting for the arrival of two production lines. We originally expected them to arrive at the end of April. Now, the beginning of June seems more likely. If this is the case, then we will be able to set up and start the production in a matter of weeks.
What’s the current situation of your cooperation with the Ministry of Health?
We can divide the cooperation with the Ministry of Health into two phases. The first is a donation agreement for 30 000 pieces of ReSpimask face masks that we donated to the Czech Republic. We signed the agreement on 25th March.
The second phase is the Ministry's interest in our regular supply of our latest RespiPro Virus Killer respirators for health care professionals. In March the Ministry expressed an interest in the delivery of 100 000 pieces of products starting weekly in early April.
Unfortunately, for a number of reasons that beyond our control, which were caused by an emergency across Europe, we did not start in time the proper launching process of the product as we had first anticipated.
We have discussed this situation with the representatives of the Ministry and explained that in the current situation we cannot confirm any orders because we are unable to guarantee the launch date. We're sparing no effort to launch the product within several week, although we cannot confirm this deadline either.
We are in touch with the Ministry and we keep its representatives informed on any updates. Our communication is correct and matter-of-fact. We are all trying to do our best to secure sufficient amount of quality and reliable protective equipment in the Czech Republic.
Can you tell us more about the tests from the American laboratory Nelson Labs?
The materials that we use in production were tested at Nelson Labs.
A subject that orders testing at Nelson Labs is and always has been a nanofiber filter manufacturer, that means it is a supplier of the material which we use to make our products. It's a standard procedure.
Therefore, we have protested strongly by filing a complaint against Mr. Ondřej Jureček for his serious deliberate accusations, which have unfortunately been spread by some media.
Moreover, Nelson Labs can't even keep record of the tests ordered by Respilon because Respilon isn't the ordering party. Therefore, there is no chance that there has been any alleged manipulation of any test results on the Respilon’s part, as Mr. Jureček incorrectly suggests. We strongly oppose that, and we intend to defend ourselves by legal means as well.
We currently have the results of three new tests from Nelson Labs from March 2020 on the functional parameters of the filter, which we are going to use in new models of masks.
Also in this case, the ordering party of the testing was the manufacturing company and not us.
It's a standard situation in the field.
We strongly object to the deliberately distorted information and speculation in certain media and on social networks:
We have been developing, producing and commercializing protective nanofiber masks since 2013.
Our nanofiber masks are one of the few in the Czech republic that meet all legal conditions to be freely sold here. A personal anti-campaign led by individuals such as Mr. Ondřej Jureček, in which some media got involved, is intentionally misleading, deliberately harms our company and causes a slowdown in the launching processes of our all products.
This is also because our capacities must be suddenly directed towards defense against these fabricated attacks instead of concentrating all efforts on production capacities and on solutions for delivery to our customers. Despite these complications, we manage to increase availability of other products at least. Mr. Jureček unfortunately takes hostage thousands of customers and sick people who need and have been already relying on our products for several years.