Discover How GBA Members Are Fighting COVID-19

March 31, 2020

Global Business Alliance is comprised of a diverse coalition of members whose businesses span numerous industries. These companies are utilizing their expertise, resources and dedicated employees to bring aid to the communities in which they operate and help eradicate the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Air Liquide

Air Liquide is committed to working with patients and medical professionals to fight the pandemic. The healthcare team is prioritizing the increasing need for medical oxygen and ramping up its production of ventilators for respiratory assistance, which is critical equipment for patients who are severely affected by the virus. The company is anticipating to double its production of ventilators in March and projects it has the capacity to quadruple production by June, if necessary. 

Allianz

Allianz and its subsidiary Allianz Insurance Holding are working to create a $570,000 emergency response fund to help support the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

Anheuser-Busch

Anheuser-Busch announced it will begin production of hand sanitizer to be distributed to vulnerable and hard-hit communities in America. AB will be using its supply and logistics network to pivot its alcohol production to produce and distribute hand sanitizer. The increased manufacturing of the hand sanitizer is addressing the shortage of product and need to continue individual hygiene efforts. Anheuser-Busch is the largest sponsor of live sports and entertainment in the United States and has decided to redirect its sports and entertainment investments to its non-profit affiliates who are supporting the COVID-19 response efforts. AB is donating $5 million to the American Red Cross to support first responders on the front lines of the coronavirus health crisis. As part of the donation, AB will work with the American Red Cross and its sports partners to identify available arenas and stadiums to be used for temporary blood drive centers. Its brewery tour centers in Merrimack, NH, and St. Louis, MO, will also be made available to the Red Cross. Lastly, AB is donating its media airtime to the Red Cross in support of its public service announcements.

Bayer

Bayer is working with the U.S. government to provide assistance on fighting COVID-19 by donating the drug Resochin, which has the potential to boost patients’ immune system response to the virus. It will be donating 3 million tablets of the drug for research purposes to combat the virus.

BBVA

BBVA is offering special assistance for its individual and small business owner customers who are adversely affected financially by the ongoing health crisis. The bank is offering penalty-free withdrawals from certain deposit accounts, ATM free refunds, and payment deferrals, extensions and waivers. These special offers are currently available to its customer base across the United States until April 17, and it will be potentially extending the date as needed. BBVA announced on March 25 additional assistance offers for its customers including fixed rate small business loans, refunds on overdraft fees, small businesses can request waivers of services charge fees on deposit accounts and special assistance and rates for advances on existing home equity lines of credit.  

bioMerieux

bioMérieux, a leader in the field of in vitro diagnostics, is launching three different tests to address the COVID-19 Pandemic. The tests are aimed at meeting the varied needs of medical professionals and health authorities to battle the emerging pandemic by testing patients. bioMérieux finalized creation of the SARS-COV-2 R-GENE test that is clinically validated on one type of respiratory specimen and will be accessible end of March. It’s anticipating the test to be submitted to the FDA for an Emergency Use Authorization. The other two tests are fully-automated and based on the company’s Biofire FilmArray technology, which is designed to detect SARS-CoV-2 and portray results in approximately 45 minutes. On March 24, the U.S. FDA approved it with an Emergency Use Authorization for use in CLIA moderate and high complexity clinical laboratories to detect SARS-CoV-2. The two FilmArray tests will be produced in Salt Lake City, Utah and are able to run at any hospital or lab with bioMérieux’s system in place. In addition, the company’s current easyMAG and EMAG systems that are produced in Italy under license from the United States, are already deployed in many large laboratories for nucleic acid extraction as part of the current COVID-19 testing.

Boehringer Ingelheim

As a research-based company, Boehringer Ingelheim is working to draw from its past and present research initiatives to help support medical solutions to fight against the pandemic. It is currently joining forces with academic researchers, international institutions and pharmaceutical companies to do so. Scientists at BI have created a comprehensive library of medical research in developing new medicines; in it’s fight to tackle the pandemic, its scientists are screening the entire library to draw potential molecular solutions that can be used against this virus.

CSL Behring 

In addition to CSL Behring's ongoing medical developments and clinical trials, the company is also providing its technical expertise to support efforts to develop a COVID-19 vaccine. Internally, CSL has done its part by restricting international travel of its employees and postponing large events, while still continuing to provide its supply of critical medicine throughout the world. CSL is donating its proprietary adjuvant technology to the University of Queensland’s pre-clinical development program for a COVID-19 vaccine. 

DAIMLER

On Tuesday, March 24, Daimler subsidiary, Mercedes Benz, hosted a blood drive with LifeSouth Community Blood Center in its Vance, Alabama facility’s parking lot. Many hospitals are experiencing a low supply of blood because blood drives are being cancelled at an alarming rate due to the coronavirus. Mercedes Benz saw the crucial need for blood drives at this time and teamed up with LifeSouth, which brought three buses to the drive. The blood donated from the drive will go to DCH Regional Medical Center in Tuscaloosa and hospitals in central Alabama. The Mercedes Benz headquarters is also supporting its local community efforts in Atlanta. On March 18, three vehicles left the headquarters en route to the Salvation Army Metro Atlanta Red Shield Shelter in downtown Atlanta with 500 kits replete with donated healthcare supplies. These supplies, including face masks, gloves, wipes, toilet paper and hand sanitizer, will go to Salvation Army’s homeless shelter that urgently needs them to help protect its vulnerable community during the Coronavirus pandemic.

DENSO

DENSO is donating approximately 2,000 N95 masks to support health care workers in Michigan and North Carolina in response to COVID-19 pandemic. DENSO’s headquarters in Southfield, Michigan is supplying Ascension Providence Hospital-Southfield with more than 1,600 respirators, and its manufacturing facility in Battle creek is donating 300 to Bronson Battle Creek Hospital.

Ericsson

In response to the White House’s call to action to the country’s artificial intelligence experts to develop new data mining techniques to help collect and categorize the high-priority scientific questions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ericsson has to decided to participate in the challenge. Ericsson is partnering with the National Institutes of Health, Georgetown University and the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy to conduct this data analysis research. Ericsson is empowering its employees, from project managers to software engineers, to create ten virtual teams to work on the ten different open tasks in this challenge ranging from understanding COVID-19 risk factors to finding treatment protocols. Ericsson is offering this challenge on a volunteer basis to its employees who can use their skill set and leverage the company’s platform as a way to contribute to the global health crisis.

GlaxoSmithKline

Global healthcare company GSK is partnering with CEPI to develop a vaccine for COVID-19. In this collaboration, GSK will be making its established pandemic vaccine adjuvant platform technology readily accessible in order to support effective vaccine developments. GSK’s adjuvant systems were created to enhance immune response in conjunction with the vaccine in order to create longer lasting immunity against viruses and infections.

Hitachi, Ltd. 

Hitachi subsidiary, Sullair, donates approximately 1,300 N95 respirators to Franciscan Health Michigan City hospital in Indiana. Sullair’s donation is helping to ensure that medical professionals who are working on the frontline are protected and safe when treating highly contagious patients. Another Hitachi subsidiary, JR Automation, is partnering with General Motors to produce an entire face mask production assembly line, which has the capacity to produce 50,000 masks per day. JR Automation successfully constructed the assembly line for GM in six days, allowing General Motors to produce face masks beginning on March 27.  

Horizon Therapeutics

Horizon Therapeutics announced its commitment to donate $1.5 million to COVID-19 response efforts in Illinois and in other impacted communities in which the company operates. Part of the donation will go towards the Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund, which aids individuals who need access to critical services including emergency food and basic supplies, interim housing and shelter and primary health care services. The other part of the donation will go towards the Illinois Biotechnology Innovation Organization (iBIO) Institute’s COVID-19 Response Fund. iBIO’s response fund will work in tandem with the Illinois Manufacturers Association and with State, corporate, private and philanthropic donations, to make direct purchases of protective medical products to support Illinois based healthcare workers and first responders. In addition to Horizon’s Illinois-based donation, it’s also providing financial assistance to ALONE Ireland, the Lake County Crisis Relief Fund, the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund, the Silicon Valley Community Foundation COVID-19 Coronavirus Regional Response Fund and the Greater Washington Community Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Response Fund. Horizon is urging other businesses to join in its effort to offer support and stability around the world.

John Hancock

John Hancock donates $1 million to the Boston Resiliency Fund, which will go towards providing food and medicine to children in need during the pandemic crisis and is urging other corporations to do the same. The Boston Relief Fund was created to manage Boston’s fundraising and philanthropy efforts to support the most vulnerable communities impacted by the virus. Learn more about John Hancock’s contributions and the resiliency fund

Lehigh Hanson

In order to help protect healthcare and medical professionals, multiple Lehigh Hanson plants have donated personal protective equipment (PPE). Lehigh Hanson’s Lehigh Cement Company facility in Glens Falls, NY also donated several cases of N95 respirators due to the current critical need for respirators across the country.

LVMH

Beginning on March 16, the luxury goods conglomerate announced it was using its perfume production facilities for Christian Dior, Guerlain and Givenchy to manufacture hand sanitizer and provide the supply for free. LVMH decided to tackle the issue of the widespread shortage of hand sanitizer by producing its own since the infrastructure was in place in these facilities to produce the hydroalcoholic gel. 

Mazda

The Mazda Foundation (USA), Inc. has approved a $70,000 donation for Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County, California, which is also where Mazda North America’s U.S. headquarters are located. The donation will purchase two truckloads containing 60,000 pounds of shelf-stable food items. The food bank is currently serving food-insecure families who are affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Medtronic

Medtronic, a major supplier of ventilators and other respiratory equipment, pledges to increase production of this crucial equipment to keep up with the increased need across the United States and around the world. Most recently, the company has begun publicly sharing the design specifications for its Puritan Bennett 560 ventilator, allowing other companies to explore producing the product in an effort to increase global production of ventilators.

Novartis

Leading global medicines company, Novartis, has announced a broad range of initiatives to respond to COVID-19 Pandemic. Efforts include creating a $20 million global fund to support impacted communities and entering into new collaborative research efforts such as the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator, coordinated by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome, and Mastercard, as well as a COVID-19 directed partnership organized by the Innovative Medicines Initiative. The company has also made available a set of compounds from its libraries that it considers suitable for in vitro antiviral testing and is evaluating its existing products to see if any could be repurposed beyond their approved indications. Novartis intends to donate up to 130 million doses of generic hydroxychloroquine by the end of May to support the pandemic response. Hydroxychloroquine is currently under evaluation in clinical trials for the treatment of COVID-19. Novartis is supporting ongoing clinical trial efforts, and will evaluate the need for additional clinical trials. The company is also exploring further scaling of capacity to increase supply and is committed to working with manufacturers around the world to meet global demand.

Panasonic

Panasonic’s Industrial Device company is working with customer, Phillips Healthcare, to supply backup batteries for their ventilator production surge. Panasonic also donated $50,000 to the United Way COVID Relief Fund in Newark, NJ and its team at the Gigafactory in Reno, Nevada is donating 17,000 protective masks to hospitals in the region.  

Pernod Ricard

In order to help combat COVID-19, Pernod Ricard is donating 70,000 litres of pure alcohol to the Laboratoire Cooper, which supplies all pharmacies in France. And in the United States, Pernod Ricard’s Arkansas manufacturing plant and its distilleries in Kentucky, West Virginia and Texas are beginning production of hand sanitizer to help resupply a shortage of stock and help fight the pandemic on a local level.  

Roche

On March 13, Roche created the first commercial test for SARS-CoV-2, allowing expedited testing to meet time-sensitive medical needs during the coronavirus pandemic. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved it and issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for the test. This gives hospitals and labs the opportunity to run the test on Roche’s automated systems, which are available across the country and around the world. This high volume testing is designed to allow many people to get tested, helping to stop any further spread of the virus as soon as possible. 

Sanofi

Sanofi, which has previously developed a SARS vaccine, is working to use this as a springboard to develop a vaccine for the novel coronavirus utilizing similar medical technology and innovation. Knowledge from the past vaccine could lead to a faster creation of a vaccine for this virus. Sanofi is using its recombinant DNA platform, which produces an identical DNA match of the proteins found in the coronavirus. This DNA can then be used to mass produce coronavirus antigen with the hopes of creating an immunity protection system.

SAP

SAP is opening up four of its technology platforms to support the relief response to the COVID-19 outbreak. For example, one of those platforms, SAP Qualtrics, innovated a technological solution to help medical and government organizations that are facing an overwhelming amount of phone calls to create automatic reports to identify gaps or patterns in the inquiries. This technology was made free and openly available to federal, state and local governments and health organizations.

Siemens

Siemens is dedicated to helping the nation combat the pandemic by supporting healthcare services and the country’s critical infrastructure. Its manufacturing professionals, technicians and field service teams are working to keep factories operating. Employees are helping maintain operations at hospitals, power plants, government facilities, military sites and data centers and support city services including transportation, water and waste, and national security emergency response systems. All Siemens workers are following the proper protective protocols to keep themselves and others safe while continuing to work. Siemens is also a part of the effort to expand hospital spaces by providing equipment and tools ranging from portable X-ray and ultrasound systems, to cloud-based platforms and remote monitoring to optimize the converted spaces. Additionally, Siemens Healthineers is working on a molecular test to detect COVID-19 in patients and the development of new artificial intelligence algorithms to detect and evaluate similar atypical viral patterns.

Sodexo

Sodexo is ensuring that students across the United States who depend on school-provided meals or reside in food insecure households do not go hungry as school districts close due to the coronavirus. In West Columbia, South Carolina, Sodexo is teaming up with Lexington Two School District to serve free breakfast and lunch on the weekdays to children under the age of 18. Additionally, in Woonsocket, Rhode Island and Springfield, Massachusetts, Sodexo is working with those school districts to provide free ‘grab and go’ meals to students during the school closures.

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) 

The global IT organization’s strategic unit called TCS iON offers interactive virtual classroom services. In the wake of all of the grade school and college closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, TCS announced it will give free access to the service to educational institutions across the United States. The virtual learning platform offers mobile and web access, allowing educators to engage with their students in real time by sharing assignments and tests with interactive features such as live polling, surveys and debates. The service also offers additional options including “live classroom”, which emulates a live classroom teaching session.

Teva Pharmaceuticals 

The global IT organization’s strategic unit called TCS iON offers interactive virtual classroom services. In the wake of all of the grade school and college closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, TCS announced it will give free access to the service to educational institutions across the United States. The virtual learning platform offers mobile and web access, allowing educators to engage with their students in real time by sharing assignments and tests with interactive features such as live polling, surveys and debates. The service also offers additional options including “live classroom”, which emulates a live classroom teaching session.