One of Stonegate Group’s brightest commercial tenants is DetraPel, a start-up company who manufactures cleaning products locally in their Framingham warehouse.
This talented group has recently switched gears and is now producing products that can safely be used to disinfect and sanitize hard surfaces against 140+ organisms, including SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
You can read about them in the MetroWest Daily News article below and check out their website (www.detrapel.com) for more details.
Be well and be safe!
written by Thomas Maye for MetroWest Daily News (photo credit: Daily News and Wicked Local / Art Illman)
FRAMINGHAM – It was only two years ago that DetraPel Inc. and its young founder, David Zamarin, earned a $200,000 investment from Mark Cuban and Lori Grenier after an appearance on “Shark Tank.”
Now the Blandin Avenue startup that sells stain-protectant sprays is earning kudos for its contributions to the community during the global pandemic.
DetraPel’s six-person team has shifted “98% of (their) energy” to making disinfectant products to help local community organizations, according to Marketing Manager Ania Scott.
“We are doing all that we can, but we really hope other small companies think about pivoting their day-to-day operations to help the fight” against coronavirus, she said.
The seven-year-old company has grown significantly since Zamarin, then just 19 (he was 15 when he founded the company in 2013), showed its fabric protectors on “Shark Tank,” winning over Cuban and Grenier. But as it has moved its focus to making disinfectants, Scott said the company’s team has been forced to scale back production on their main-selling products.
DetraPel has ordered new machinery to automate the disinfectant manufacturing process, ramped up production, and is working day and night “to get this stuff out the door, because we know how important this is to get out to the community,” Scott said.
The company is also working with Mayor Yvonne Spicer’s office to make hand sanitizer for the Framingham Fire Department.
Scott said the process will take at least two weeks, as the company needs to work with suppliers to get materials and have the product approved by the FDA.
“It’s a completely different formulation that requires FDA approval, and we just got our FDA facility approval overnight, basically,” she said. “Everything is slow now, unfortunately.”
Scott said it was too early in the process to determine the monetary value of the planned donation.
Acting Fire Chief Michael Dutcher, who along with Mayor Yvonne Spicer visited DetraPel’s Blandin Avenue production facility on Thursday, was thrilled.
“It’s great (that) a local company has changed their direction on the fly like this,” Dutcher said. “They saw a need in the community. They saw there was a need and they’re going to be able to fill that void.”
Dutcher said the company has already donated some cleaner and disinfectant to the Framingham Fire Department.
Consumers can buy disinfectant through DetraPel’s website, but much of the stock will be donated to nearby hospitals, fire stations, grocery stores and other places with essential workers, she said.
“We’re taking any donation inquiries we can from the local community,” Scott said. While larger retailers have expressed interest in buying DetraPel’s disinfectant products, the company has turned down those offers to focus on donations.
“We’re being careful not to over-promise,” she said.
Scott added that there’s a widespread shortage of the raw chemicals required to make the hospital-grade disinfectant formula, which is based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Environmental Protection Agency recommendations.
“Despite being a small business, we’re constantly working with our chemical suppliers to try to expand our product lineup to include valuable products that are imperative in this time of crisis. The more we can produce, the more we’ll be able to donate … We’re definitely going to do the most we can.”
Through these challenges, Scott said she felt immense pride at other small, local businesses who’ve helped in coronavirus efforts, and in the dedication of the company she’s come to call home.
“I’m happy to be part of such a small team of some of the hardest-working, kindest people I know,” she said.