CAZENOVIA, N.Y. — Madison County manufacturer Marquardt Switches, Inc. recently announced it will supply Ford Motor Company with switches, as the automaker ramps up to produce thousands of ventilators for hospitals caring for COVID-19 patients.
Ford is scheduled to produce 50,000 ventilators in 100 days. Through a partnership with GE Healthcare, the automaker said it will start assembling ventilators by the week of April 20 at its manufacturing plant in Michigan. Ford’s goal is to produce 50,000 ventilators by July 4.
Marquardt Switches — located in the Madison County town of Nelson, just outside of Cazenovia — says it will supply Ford with a “mass amount of on/off switches to be installed into the ventilators.” It also is developing other advanced interior vehicle switches for the automaker, and that work will continue alongside the ventilator switch work.
Marquardt Switches, which was incorporated in 1981, serves as the North American headquarters of Germany-based Marquardt GmbH, which was founded in 1925.
Marquardt, which currently has 426 Central New York employees, manufactures electro-mechanical switches, controls and wireless communications systems for major industries — including automotive, off-road, truck and other industrial applications.
The company’s “standard switch” division is primarily responsible for supplying switches and controls for life-saving medical equipment, including various medical devices like oxygen concentrators, as well as compressors, generators, radios, utility appliances, and other essential equipment.
Marquardt Switches says it was designated as an “essential business” under the “New York State on PAUSE” executive order that shut down all non-essential businesses in the state starting March 22, and which will continue through at least April 29. About three-fourths of the firm’s workforce was working either at its Nelson facility or from home, as of April 1, according to a company spokeswoman.