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The agreement also gives Coats exclusive global access to the technology for use in sewing threads. HeiQ Viroblock is among the first textile technologies in the world to be proven effective in laboratory testing against SARS-CoV-2, the virus from the coronavirus family that causes COVID-19. It has been shown to be 99.99% effective in 30 minutes in tests conducted with the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity in Melbourne, Australia.
The Coats Innovation Hub – America in North Carolina, US, is adapting HeiQ Viroblock technology to create a new range of threads and engineered yarns suitable for application across a wide range of end-use products. Non-toxic and hypoallergenic, HeiQ Viroblock merges microsilver technology to attract virus particles which then combine with vesicle technology to break down the viral membrane within seconds. The microsilver technology uses recycled silver to enhance its sustainable offering, while the vesicle technology is bio-based.
Ronan Cox, President, Performance Materials, Coats, said: ‘The combination of HeiQ Viroblock technology with our specialist expertise in threads and yarns creates a unique and powerful textile solution for the challenges we see today. The innovation infrastructure we have built at Coats continues to deliver exciting industry changing concepts that have real large scale commercial potential.’
Coats prides itself on its innovation which has become a key focus following the development of its three Innovation Hubs in China, Turkey and the US. These centres provide the opportunity for technical experts from Coats to work alongside industry partners and customers in real time on dedicated machinery to develop ground-breaking solutions for all the industries Coats supplies.
Carlo Centonze, co-founder and CEO, HeiQ Group, said: ‘We are certainly very delighted that Coats, the world’s leading threads and yarns producer is adapting HeiQ Viroblock. This technology can be applied to any fabric to add an antiviral efficacy to them. Now with Coats threads and yarns, it is even possible for every stitch holding the fabric together to deliver the same effect, leaving no chance for harmful microorganisms.’
This is just the latest step in Coats helping keep people safe through its product offering. In April, it was announced that Coats joined the Gerber Task Force as a coalition partner. Created by Gerber Technology, the Task Force empowers manufacturers to switch to personal protective equipment (PPE) production and match supply and demand for critically needed products.
Coats is the world’s leading industrial thread company. At home in some 50 countries, Coats has a workforce of 17,000 people across six continents. Revenues in 2019 were US$1.4bn. Coats’ pioneering history and innovative culture ensure the company leads the way around the world. It provides complementary and value added products, services and software solutions to the apparel and footwear industries. It applies innovative techniques to develop high technology Performance Materials threads, yarns and fabrics in areas such as Transportation, Telecommunications and Energy, and Personal Protection. Headquartered in the UK, Coats is a FTSE 250 company, a constituent of the FTSE4Good Index Series and a participant in the UN Global Compact. It is also the Official Thread Supplier to the Royal Shakespeare Company.