Infinity-AP, the custom storefront fabrication company in Waveland that manufactures custom storefronts for major retailers such as Abercrombie & Fitch, Victoria’s Secret and the PINK chain of stores, is now manufacturing face shields for medical workers.
The production of the face shield – both the bracket that attaches to the head and the shield itself – began March 27, according to Alyssa Foley, who heads sales and marketing for Infinity-AP.
“We have contracted with a gentleman who is supplying completed masks for Ochsner Medical that needed assistance producing parts to keep up with the volume,” Foley said in an email.
The Waveland employees are averaging 2,500 shields a day and as of April 1, they had produced 11,500. “We are working on the shields and also a prototype for cash wraps for businesses at the register,” Foley said.
Making protective equipment is new to Infinity-AP but the company was up for the challenge.
“We are in retail, so we are used to adapting to changing environments and evolving our products to fit our customer’s needs,” Foley said. “We are just grateful that we can help in a time of need and utilize our machinery that would be sitting idle as our normal business has come to a near halt.”
Infinity-AP moved its operation from Chalmette, La., to a vacant 84 Lumber store in Waveland for more space, co-owner Rick Bradley said at the time of the move. The building was completely renovated and the company installed nearly $750,000 worth of equipment into the new location before beginning production.
“We have two 12-foot laser etchers and one 16-foot CNC machine,” Foley said. No re-tooling on the machine itself was needed to fabricate the shields, but, she said, “it required new programming and testing for the proper settings.”
The Waveland operation has 18 employees, and the new production of face shields has helped keep the operation going. “This has allowed us to maintain a staff running seven days a week,” Foley said.