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A PIVOT in its business direction some 13 years ago has helped positioned Excelsia Technologies Sdn Bhd to capitalise on the current pandemic and set it for further growth on the back of rising awareness on hygiene.
The disinfectant producer saw its business grow seven-fold over the past year as consumers and businesses cleared out shelves of disinfectant and cleaning products in the early days of the pandemic.
Founded in 2007, the company had initially started off on the path of renewable energy, specifically dealing in solar power systems.
However, founder and chief executive officer Sia Ban Ian felt that the local market wasn’t ready for the product at the time. Additionally, the tariffs set by Tenaga Nasional Bhd then were too low, which meant that the return on investment would take a long time – long enough for Sia to wonder if it should still be the product of choice for the company.
“There was very little interest in solar power systems in 2007,” he says.
The following year, Sia decided to look elsewhere.
Excelsia Technologies ventured into the disinfectant business after discovering that air conditioning systems were harbouring a lot of germs and fungus which regularly caused people to fall sick.
They researched and trialled a few solutions and eventually found a way to disinfect the air conditioning systems in cars and buildings.
When Sia saw that they were on to a product that could take off, the company put its full focus on the disinfectant business in 2008 and sold their products under the Bactakleen brand.
“We did find it challenging at first but we knew that the time would come for the products to gain traction.
“Our journey began with the invention of our very first product, the Ultra Mist. It was designed with the sole purpose of addressing problems associated with bacteria and fungus in the air coming from air conditioning systems,” he shares.
Sia notes that the traditional way of cleaning air conditioning systems have been focused on removing physical dust and dirt, but not many have considered removing bacteria and fungus when cleaning out the air conditioner.
The company’s Ultra Mist solution was developed to be used with its mist machine, which helps eliminate bacteria and mold spores in the air conditioning system.
According to Sia, the solution has been clinically tested and has shown to improve air quality.
“It is still one of our best-selling products today,” he says.
However, the product did not receive such a warm welcome when it was first introduced to the local market in 2008. Sia says the public was not properly educated on health issues associated with air conditioners at that time.
Fortunately, it found favour with several car manufacturers who saw a need for the product at their workshops. This gave Excelsia Technologies an entry into the automotive industry.