From coffee machine to holy water column, Waard’s company is adapting due to the corona crisis


HEERHUGOWAARD – If you walk into the entrance of coffee vending machine manufacturer Bravilor Bonamat in Heerhugowaard, you will immediately see it: the hygiene column with foot pump. It is the latest product from the global supplier of filter coffee machines, espresso machines, fully automatic coffee machines and kettles.

The company, which also builds vending machines for large coffee roasters, saw demand for the machines collapse as offices, factories and sports canteens closed due to corona. Something had to be done, says Ariejan Best, sales manager at Bravilor Bonamat.

He noticed that many of the customers they spoke to, and the sellers from the Bravilor dealer network, appeared to have a need for disinfection kiosks. “Why not just start making them, we thought,” says Best. The hygiene column was developed very quickly together with sister company Geerts Metaalwaren.

Holy water

A small but striking customer is the Laurentiuskerk at the Verdronkenoord in Alkmaar. Here no disinfectant comes out of the dispenser, but holy water. Pastor Jan-Jaap van Peperstraten blessed the new acquisition last week and put it into use.

Catholics, when entering the church, wet their fingers in a bowl of holy water and mark a cross. Due to the risk of contamination, the holy water bowls were the first to be taken out of service in March.

Despite the enormous growth potential for holy water dispensers in the Catholic world, Ariejan Best continues to see it as a by-product of the family business, which has been at home in the coffee machine market for 70 years. That specialism offers the best prospects for the more than 450 employees worldwide.

Media partner Heerhugowaard Central visited the Waardse company and the church:


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