The ongoing novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has already infected millions worldwide and, with no vaccine available, interventions to mitigate transmission are urgently needed. Even with a limited protective effect, face masks can reduce total infections and deaths, and can delay the peak time of the epidemic.
Vasudev Gupta, Co-founder, and Director, Oxyguard Ventures, which makes N95, face masks. He has also co-founded URFIT (Ultra-rich fit) and Elroi Cleverknits which is a Fashion Label.
Oxyguard Ventures manufactures the highest standard N95 masks their production process includes many rigorous practices and procedures to ensure the end result is the best it can possibly be.
Poor quality facemask in the market
Vasudev talks on the genesis of Oxyguard ventures, “It was quite unpredictable and it wasn't pre-planned. I was doing my masters in the UK and there was a coronavirus outbreak all over the world so I had to leave early and come down to India and there was a requirement of N95 facemask and there was poor quality facemask in the market and the proper face mask should be off six-layer face mask. So, this idea came into my mind as I belong to a manufacturing family. So I searched investors to get some funding and started searching on Google about how the manufacturing process takes on, what are the raw materials required. We started this venture in the month of June with the aim to provide a proper six-layer mask and the purpose must be for the general public. So, we are currently making six layers of double melt-blown layer and we got some certifications from the Government of India like the VAS lab report, DRDO lab report, we have some compliance from the government of India such as ISO 2015 ISO 2016, FDA CE II. Also, last month only like the Indian government has open export of N95 facemask so we have started exporting our products to Middle Eastern countries and Europe as our N95 facemask has around like 98.5 filtration quality and we are manufacturing around 25 to 30,000 pieces a day and it's been a great journey so far to start Oxyguard ventures,” he says.
Never know when a new opportunity strikes
Vasudev sheds light on co-founding 3 other companies, “Well, I would say that it's been quite an amazing journey. There have been good and bad times and my co-investors and my co-founders have helped me to achieve my goals and my vision. The first company, which I co-founded was with my brother and dad in 2018, called as URFIT. The full form is ultra-rich fit; it's a socks brand where we manufacture export quality socks of different types such as formal, informal socks, sportswear such as socks for footballers, cricketers, badminton players. Then we co-founded another company called Elroi Cleverknits which makes sustainable and eco friendly socks health socks. The main features of health socks is that it keeps the circulation of the blood flowing, keeps your foot healthy and keeps away from many diseases such as athletic foot. So basically I went to the UK to do my Master's in international events and as we say, everything happens for a reason, so due to COVID I came back to India, in between my semester, and I started with Oxyguard Ventures hence you never know when new opportunity strikes and you need to remain patient, you need to be disciplined,” he says.
Kids should not wear N95 masks
Vasudev explains, “There are different masks for different purposes, there are independent face masks with respirator as well as without respirator. So, according to the researcher, the healthcare workers, the nurses, the staff in the hospitals, they should wear an N95 face mask as it is more protective and it offers a better protection against viruses and bacteria. WHO has also recommended that a health care worker should use N95 face mask without respirator. There are many other masks as fillers, such as surgical masks, which you can throw after wearing them for about a day but it does not fully protect the person because there is a gap between the surfaces of the mask as well as between the face of the person. So it does not fully protect as compared to the N95 face mask. People who have facial hair, difficulty in breathing and kids should wear quarter masks or they should go for cotton masks. Even, the general public should also wear cotton mask rather than an N95 face mask as N95 face mask should be worn by the people who have mild symptoms of coronavirus or who have other respiratory diseases,” he says.
(Edited by Rabia Mistry Mulla)