José Antonio Altamirano
CEO
Atfil
/
View from the Top

Local Innovation Disrupts Filtering Solutions for Healthcare

By Miriam Bello | Wed, 06/01/2022 - 13:49

Q: What is Atfil’s value proposition and how does the company stand out in the market?

A: With ten years in the market, we manufacture low, medium and high-efficiency filters used by pharmaceuticals, medical devices manufacturers, hospitals and other life sciences companies in need of clean rooms. Our hight efficiency HEPA filters offer 99.97 percent in 0.3 micron minimum efficiency, which is among the highest rates for these products.

Our manufacturing processes give us the flexibility to produce any type of air filter in the market, in accordance with the needs of our clients, this is the most valuable differentiator we have as company, in addition to these strengths, all our products are high-capacity, durable solutions, reducing the energetic cost of the air filtration systems.

This provides further control of the manufacturing process in industries such as pharmaceuticals, which have several filters running continuously.  

Atfil identified that local pharmaceutical companies needed high-efficiency filters, in different sizes, critical for their process, and the previous suppliers did not have the tech to manufacture Hight efficiency HEPA filter, which are an expensive part of the manufacturing process. We developed the machinery that now allows us to manufacture our own products for some of Mexico’s most important care providers. To date, we have around 60 specialized, tech-embedded original filtering products, all of them certified by an international lab, also we have a lab where we certified the products one by one, necessary by the criticality of the product itself.

Q: Atfil works with a wide range of multi-industry clients. How significant is the health and life sciences industry for the company?

A: The life sciences sector is our largest client in terms of sales and product manufacturing, especially hospitals. We have been able to create the right particle environment to avoid nosocomial infections. Atfil’s filters follow a careful extraction and injection process to avoid environmental damage in and outside the space they are operating in.

 

Q: What specific compliance is required for the health and life sciences industries?

A: Our high levels of efficiency allow Atfil’s products to easily comply with the norms of the filtration market. Atfil manufactures 100 percent of its filters. We have a large production capacity that can support the manufacturing of personalized products to meet our client’s needs. This is uncommon in Mexico because Atfil competitors do not have the tech to manufacture Hight efficiency HEPA filters.

We have become a unique provider for the local industry. Our capacity to manufacture any type of filter in the market benefits clients through faster available supply, reducing the time required from eight to 10 weeks to two to four weeks.

Q: During the COVID-19 pandemic, Atfil supported Mexico City by producing N95 masks. What motivated this work and what were the results?

A: Alongside UNAM, we were able to participate and win this tender due to our engineering and experience in develop Hight efficiency filters. Once we won the project, we were able to build production lines for mass mask manufacturing in five weeks, meeting all of COFEPRIS’ requirements. This was a large investment risk for the company but we were able to tackle it successfully and balance our regular production with the masks project.

Early in the pandemic, Mexico had a N95 mask shortage caused by global supply shortages. Atfil was the only high efficiency filtration expert able to overcome this shortage thanks to our solid supplier base, which allowed us to source the necessary raw materials.

Q: What product and services changes did Atfil introduce as a result of the pandemic?

A: Our clients in the hospital and pharmaceutical segments require strict filtering control in their room management and during the COVID-19 pandemic this filtering process suffered many changes that altered the supply chains of filtering materials, which are 100 percent imported.

Supply remained stable during the first year of the pandemic but during the second year, manufacturing components started to become scarce as global companies began prioritizing other materials. The latter allowed us to diversify our suppliers and avoid shortages for our clients, which, coupled with preventive measures to avoid running out of supplies, helped us and our clients maintain smooth operations.

Our secure and continuous product deliveries are another differentiator of Atfil, positioning us as suppliers to Mexico’s largest public and private institutions, including INER and Hospitales ABC.

Q: What are Atfil’s new product launches?

A: We recently launched a tech-based water tank-cleaning product, fully developed by out Atfil Robotic department. Traditionally, this tank cleaning is performed manually by a diver, making it a high-risk activity. Atfil’s tank-cleaning service employs a submerged waterproof drone to perform this process. One of the objectives to this development was to reduce water waste compared to the traditional method and certainly got it.

 

High Technology in Air Filtration (Atfil) is a Mexican company and expert in air filtering solutions. It also offers air conditioning equipment and personal protective equipment.

Miriam Bello Miriam Bello Senior Journalist and Industry Analyst