Small companies innovate best

Hand sanitisers had a rocky start to life. You see them everywhere today; workshops, hospitals, markets and the desks of research analysts all sport bottles of the gooey cleaning gel. Even the American President, who reportedly shakes hands with 65,000 people a year, carries a bottle. But it wasn't always so ubiquitous. The hand sanitiser market was created in 1988 when a small family owned soap company invented a hand cleaner that could work without soap and water called Purell. Originally intended for health care workers, Purell languished in obscurity and unprofitability for a decade before catching on in the retail market. Today...

Hand sanitisers had a rocky start to life. You see them everywhere today; workshops, hospitals, markets and the desks of research analysts all sport bottles of the gooey cleaning gel. Even the American President, who reportedly shakes hands with 65,000 people a year, carries a bottle. But it wasn't always so ubiquitous.

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