Apple is tapping its Advanced Manufacturing Fund to extend a $10 million grant to COPAN Diagnostics so it can step up the production of its coronavirus testing kits.
The money will help COPAN Diagnostics quickly increase supplies of its COVID-19 sample collection kits from several thousand to over 1 million each week by the beginning of July. The goal is to ensure that all hospitals nationwide can diagnose and monitor people suffering from COVID-19.
“We feel a deep sense of responsibility to do everything we can to help medical workers, patients, and communities support the global response to COVID-19,” Jeff Williams, chief operating officer for Apple, said in a statement on Thursday (May 7).
He added that COPAN Diagnostics is among the “most innovative manufacturers of sample collection kits for COVID-19 testing.”
In addition to the funding, the Silicon Valley tech giant will help COPAN Diagnostics move to a bigger facility in Southern California. In addition, Apple will help the manufacturer design innovative equipment. It is anticipated that the expansion will generate over 50 new jobs.
Norman Sharples, chief executive officer of COPAN Diagnostics, said the partnership with Apple is already helping it step up efforts to increase the production of sample collection and transport kits, which are critical to fighting the coronavirus.
He added that partnership with Apple aligns with COPAN’s “strong beliefs of innovation, quality, and excellence in manufacturing and design.”
Apple said it is planning to source equipment and materials for COPAN from U.S. firms, such as K2 Kinetics in York, Pennsylvania, and MWES in Waukesha, Wisconsin.
Apple’s Advanced Manufacturing Fund was launched in 2017 with $1 billion and has since grown to $5 billion. The goal of the fund is to help American companies that are fostering innovation and growth in the U.S. manufacturing sector.
Apple is also among numerous U.S. companies that helped obtain face masks and distribute them to the hospitals needing them most.