Fraser Mair, who graduated in 2019 from the University’s Business with Marketing Management course, produced 15,000 bottles of free hand sanitiser during the COVID-19 lockdown and is now selling the product to companies that have placed large corporate orders.
The 24-year-old was concerned with the severe lack of sanitiser available for frontline workers and was appalled at reports of price gouging in the marketplace.
With the lockdown causing a dip in sales at his family’s small gin distillery, production was switched to making a World Health Organization (WHO) approved formula of virus-killing liquid from the surplus of high-strength alcohol now available.
The initiative was a huge success, with upwards of 15,000 free bottles of sanitiser being distributed to frontline workers and vulnerable people.
“We called it Leithal Santiser, after the old maritime town of Leith where the distillery is located,” said Fraser.
Company payrolls have plunged by 730,000 since the start of the coronavirus crisis lockdown as the UK braces for a feared acceleration in unemployment.
Data released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed 81,000 net fewer people on payrolls last month alone, despite continuing support for employers via government loans and the Job Retention Scheme for furloughed workers.
The figure does not include self-employed workers – also eligible for taxpayer aid.
The ONS said the claimant count – which covers those claiming benefits for unemployment and because they are on low incomes – rose 116.8% to 2.7 million between March and July.
There was evidence too of a wider squeeze on incomes, with regular pay falling by 0.2% in the three months to June compared to the same period last year.
That represented, the ONS said, the first negative growth in regular nominal earnings since records began in 2001.
Taylor Tepper has joined Forbes Advisor as a retirement writer covering retirement and investment.
Previously, Tepper was with Wirecutter where he worked as a senior writer covering personal finance.
Tepper has also worked at Bankrate.com as a financial planning writer and analyst. He also covered everything related to investing, savings and credit as a staff writer for Money Magazine and also served as a currencies reporter at Bloomberg.
Prior to that, Tepper was a planet money intern at NPR and also worked as a business reporting intern at The Daily.
Additionally, he was a freelance correspondent at Tampa Bay Times and held the posts of managing editor and feature reporter at New Roots News and St. Petersburgh Patch and Largo Patch, respectively.
Tepper earned his undergraduate degree from New York University and his master’s degree in journalism from Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY.