Sanford company avoids layoffs by making coronavirus safety products

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Members of the McCarthy Fabrication crew in October 2019 - PHOTO VIA MCCARTHY FABRICATION/INSTAGRAM
  • Photo via McCarthy Fabrication/Instagram
  • Members of the McCarthy Fabrication crew in October 2019
Charles McCarthy, owner of McCarthy Fabrications, has sold more than 9,000 units of a hand sanitizer stand that has helped his business stay afloat amid the pandemic.

McCarthy Fabrications, a construction and small scale contract manufacturing company based in Sanford, is open for business because of McCarthy's idea to manufacture a type of hand sanitizer stand that other companies were sold out of until July.



"I can make those now, I can make them available tomorrow," McCarthy said about the sanitation stands.

McCarthy says he is selling hand sanitizer stands, each costing around $150 dollars, all over the country to doctors, dentists, hospitals, schools, churches, car dealerships and businesses.
Products that McCarthy Fabrication is now making - PHOTO VIA MCCARTHY FABRICATION WEBSITE
  • Photo via McCarthy Fabrication website
  • Products that McCarthy Fabrication is now making
One hospital in Louisiana purchased 500 units of McCarthy's hand sanitizer stand, and the company Infinity Ward, which developed popular video game "Call of Duty," bought many units as well. 



In his first week, McCarthy Fabrications sold only 20 units but in the second week, he sold 300 units in just one day. His ideas were not always successful, though.

Before the hand sanitizer stand, McCarthy jumped on the bandwagon with a cheap version of the touchpoint minimizer tool, which allows the user to let the tool touch commonly infectious areas instead of their hands. He started a Kickstarter campaign to fund his idea but failed. The campaign goal was to raise $12,500 dollars but instead, it only raised $1,238 dollars. 

"I think we only sold like 10 or 15 units," McCarthy said.

After his touchpoint minimizer tool idea failed, a Lysol wipe stand, a device to open the door with your feet, and a stand for gloves also didn't make it.

While McCarthy still sells the touchpoint minimizer tool – he has just a few left – the sanitizer stand sold through his website is keeping his business and its employees afloat.

"I hope sales on this continue, but it would be much better if the pandemic was over," McCarthy said.

His 6,000-square-foot warehouse in Sanford is large enough to safely distance the four or five employees. (McCarthy also provides hand sanitizer.) McCarthy says he is happy to be able to give his employees work and keep them out of the unemployment system.

On June 1, McCarthy Fabrications began selling their own hand sanitizer dispenser stands with attachments for pump bottles on Amazon.

"I certainly hope that sales on this continue after the pandemic is over, but if they don't and if the pandemic ends and it dries up, then great, the pandemic is over and now I'm happy," McCarthy said. "I'd rather the pandemic go away than keep selling hand sanitizer stands."

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