Business honored

AMSTERDAM — Montgomery County named its first small business of the month honoree to a local business that changed its gears to make production equipment for local hospitals.

According to a news release, Saratoga Horseworks, a small business that normally manufactures equestrian products was honored as the county’s first small business of the month for shifting its operation to produce much needed healthcare personal protection equipment to help ease the burden during a global health pandemic that has caused hospitals, nursing homes and other medical professionals to have a supply shortage of N95 masks, gowns and plastic shields.

“Our community’s response to the pandemic exemplifies why Montgomery County is such a special place to live and work,” said Montgomery County Executive Matt Ossenfort. “People from throughout the community have stepped up to help neighbors in need during this difficult time. Saratoga Horseworks epitomizes this spirit of community and service. In a time of national crisis, Michael Libertucci and his team quickly responded to the needs of our healthcare providers, keeping employees on the job and producing thousands of desperately needed PPEs.”

“It was never a question whether we would help with PPE shortages, but what we could do to do the most good,” said Libertucci, president of Saratoga Horseworks.

According to the release, on March 23, Saratoga Horseworks made the decision to turn part of its production facility over to making PPEs for healthcare providers. All within less than a week, the company had designed prototypes and samples for area hospitals to evaluate, and quickly started producing 1,600 face shields per day.

By the second week of April, based on feedback from hospitals and other medical service providers, the company began to focus on the production of gowns. With existing space, equipment, trained operators and a substantial source of material, the company found its operation could be most productive focusing its efforts to address the critical need for gowns, according to the press release.

“Companies like Saratoga Horseworks and Michael Libertucci and his team are a prime examples of why Montgomery County will get through this pandemic and come out stronger,” said Montgomery County Business Development Center CEO Ken Rose. “They are driving our economy and creating opportunities, but they’re also ready to lend a hand when the community is in need. This recognition is our chance to say ‘thank you’ and provide them with some well-earned gratitude.”

Saratoga Horseworks was founded in 1988 and developed from avid horseman Michael Libertucci who used his vision to address design challenges and pressing needs of equestrians. The company first produced fly sheets, and made its mark again with the creation of the Saratoga Bandage, which features a unique fabric that provides support for a horse’s lower limbs.

In 1997, Saratoga Horseworks began producing contract-sewn products for outside companies. The company also introduced a new division, Custom Sewn Products, which caters to various non-equestrian industries including pet products, scuba diving, medical products, musical instrument accessories and more. Today, the company continues to operate from its location at 57 Edson St., Amsterdam.

Montgomery County began nominations for its new small business of the month award series in March. The award will recognize local businesses with 20 employees or less who nominated for demonstrating commitment to the vitality of their community and the Montgomery County economy.

Anyone who would like to nominate a small business for recognition should contact the Montgomery County Business Development Center at 518-853-8334 or email with two to three paragraphs about the business and how it’s making an impact on the county’s communities.

“As soon as social distancing regulations are lifted, I look forward to visiting the company and thanking each employee for what they’ve done to help make Montgomery County stronger during these challenging times. On behalf of the county and its residents, I’m proud to recognize Saratoga Horseworks with our inaugural Small Business of the Month award,” Ossenfort said.

By Patricia Older

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