Managing Sports Editor
George Gianforcaro’s “million dollars a day” mantra began in 2005, when he started his own company, IndutexUSA. Now, over a decade in as president of the company, that mindset is being fulfilled, but more than just profit and success matter to Gianforcaro.
IndutexUSA, which is legally independent from the related Italian manufacturer, Indutex, was started by Gianforcaro after he held multiple sales and management positions for other companies earlier in his career and was one of Indutex’s customers.
“I was their customer and didn’t want to go work for them,” Gianforcaro said. “I wanted to start my own company.”
A 1991 university alum with a major in civil engineering, Gianforcaro began his time in the workforce as an engineer. Quickly, he realized that upward mobility in the engineering field was heavily reliant on age and experience.
“If you want to make more money, you have to become older [since] you get paid based on your years of experience,” Gianforcaro said of being an engineer. “I want to wake up every morning and be able to make a million dollars that day. It gets my blood flowing, it gets me excited and that’s why I really like the idea of the sales and marketing side.”
After sixteen years as president of IndutexUSA, Gianforcaro has found success and learned how to sustain that prosperity. His company is a national producer of protective garments and personal protective equipment (PPE).
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, IndutexUSA was largely focused on the distribution of hazmat suits to hospitals, responders and other areas of service throughout the United States.
The company’s warehouse, located in Newark began to bring in mass amounts of PPE, such as masks, for pandemic-related purposes. The masks would then be shipped to hospitals and places of need across the country. Gianforcaro began to brainstorm how his warehouse’s shipments of masks could help local hospitals navigate the growing coronavirus pandemic.
“One of my customers had six hospitals and they each wanted a million masks, so I would start getting products and shipping them to him, yet none of them were shipped to hospitals in Delaware,” Gianforcaro said. “It was killing me because I’d have a tractor trailer pull up at our Newark warehouse and we would unload the masks. Within two hours, these masks would be reloaded onto a different trailer and shipped to Houston.”
In an attempt to focus the company’s efforts on local hospitals, Gianforcaro contacted state Senator Chris Coons to make Delaware hospitals aware of IndutexUSA’s efforts and capabilities to aid in-state frontline workers.
Coons held a press conference at the Newark warehouse to discuss the large number of FDA-certified and medical-grade masks that the company had available. This, in turn, is what led local hospitals to contact IndutexUSA and purchase the necessary product to operate during the pandemic.
According to Gianforcaro, his company was able to withstand the high demand for mask deliveries during the outbreak of the pandemic because the need for hazmat suits declined as construction work was halted. Now, hospitals have the proper backstock of PPE they need, and with construction work returning to a sense of normalcy, the scale is balancing back in the other direction.
While the COVID-19 pandemic certainly brought attention to the availability of proper PPE in hospitals, Gianforcaro noted that hospitals began to recognize the necessity of PPE back when the Ebola virus affected the United States.
“All the hospitals realized that if there was a national pandemic, they didn’t have the proper PPE, hazmat suits or rubber gloves,” Gianforcaro said. “It was a wakeup call to a lot of the hospitals that they were not prepared.”
Still, this realization did not prevent hospitals from being thrown for a loop by the coronavirus pandemic that quickly emerged during 2020’s earliest days. Gianforcaro’s wife, a nurse at A.I. DuPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, was involved and impacted by the immediate responses from local hospitals.
“Five years ago, my wife would go through 15 masks a day,” Gianforcaro said. “When the pandemic hit, they would give her a [paper] mask and say ‘you have to wear the same mask all week.’”
Even outside of hospitals, IndutexUSA looked to make a positive impact on various local organizations.
“I donated so much product — when people call you up like Girl Scouts and Little Leagues, you’re not going to charge them for masks,” Gianforcaro said. “The Little League’s budget for PPE is zero, they don’t have money for them. You don’t focus on the money.”
Those immediate deficiencies in PPE distribution across many different organizations was part of Gianforcaro’s motivation to deliver the proper equipment without focusing on his company’s bottom line.
“When selling PPE, you’re trying to make the world better,” Gianforcaro said. “It’s more than just the dollars and cents, you kind of feel as though you’re working to make the world a better place.”