Charles Koch, chairman and CEO, Koch Industries, Inc.

by Charles Koch, chairman and CEO, Koch Industries, Inc.

Once again, I want to commend you for all that you are accomplishing during these uncertain and challenging times. The fact that we remain committed to providing the essential products and services that people value and rely on is exemplary. This important work is more vital than ever, and I thank each of you for what you are doing to fulfill our Vision of benefitting others.

In keeping with our Guiding Principles, we are doing our utmost to promote your health and safety during this COVID-19 pandemic.  That is why we are taking additional precautions in all our workplaces to create a safe and secure environment. As you know, we are following the CDC guidelines, practicing social distancing, installing additional sanitizing stations, and working to ensure our facilities are carefully cleaned. Our IT teams have leveraged cloud-based technologies to enable streamlined, secure remote work capabilities. We have also coordinated with insurance providers to extend benefits and alleviate any costs associated with COVID-19 testing.

You can be proud of the fact that Georgia-Pacific is working tirelessly to produce much-needed bath tissue, paper towels and hand sanitizer. Phillips-Medisize is ensuring the supply chain for its pharmaceutical and medical device customers remains uninterrupted. Molex is providing parts for life-saving ventilators. Flint Hills Resources is supplying the resin used to make COVID testing kits. John Zink Hamworthy Combustion is using its 3D printer to help make face shields for frontline care providers. More than 85 percent of COVID-19 tests in the United States are directed to labs using Infor’s healthcare IT platforms. Several of our sites have donated products ranging from vital protective gear to ingredients for hand sanitizer. And, the Stand Together community is working with the Family Independence Initiative to launch #GiveTogetherNow, an online effort that helps those families hit hardest by the coronavirus crisis to get immediate cash assistance.

I am especially impressed with the innovations of our frontline employees that are enabling us to do an even better job of being safe, effective and compliant. In addition, you are finding new ways to add value for our customers that will be used in the years to come.

At INVISTA, for instance, an augmented reality technology deploys a smartphone as the computing device. This has become a vital tool used about 200 times per week. Working in cooperation with Mira Labs, INVISTA employees at seven sites are using this hands-free, wearable technology to communicate interactively with remote subject matter experts. This eliminates the need for travel (difficult today, and always expensive and time consuming) by enabling real-time learning and problem solving.

You are also doing a great job of using the many other technology-driven tools we have added since 2010. It’s exciting to see employees using virtual technology to enable contractors to help complete important site work, even when quarantined miles away, and customers who are providing us with real-time inventory data that helps us serve them more efficiently. Many of our plant employees are now able to safely and efficiently control processes while working remotely — something employees a decade ago could only dream about.

As you will see from the stories in this issue of Discovery, technology-driven transformations all across Koch have better equipped us for dealing with this unprecedented challenge.

You deserve praise for your contributions and innovations — today and every day – but especially now. I want you to know how proud I am of what you are accomplishing during these difficult times.

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