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Two College Students Make £10,000 Selling Face Masks Following Coronavirus Outbreak

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Two College Students Make £10,000 Selling Face Masks Following Coronavirus Outbreak

Two enterprising college students in Bournemouth have made more than £10,000 selling face masks on eBay, saying they simply 'found a gap in the market' amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Gabriel Becker, 17, who attends Twynham Sixth Form, told the Daily Echo inspiration had come from War Dogs, a film starring Jonah Hill and Miles Teller in which two childhood friends profit handsomely from war by becoming international arms dealers.

Credit: BNPS
Credit: BNPS

Becker realised he could make a quick buck selling the masks, roping in his friend, 18-year-old Luke Gamble, a student at the Bournemouth Academy of Modern Music.

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Becker said: "I was looking at news about the coronavirus and looking at buying masks because I was going to London. Then I noticed they were extortionate.

"I looked deeper and deeper and saw there was not many people selling them. I found a gap in the market.

"I have been interested in business since I saw how much money you can make.

"I was down to my last £20 and put it into this business and prayed it worked.

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"I went into doctor's surgeries that were closing down and bought masks from Spanish suppliers.

"It just took off from there. I have had 400 whole sales and made £4,600."

Workers make facial masks at the workshop of a company in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province. Credit: PA
Workers make facial masks at the workshop of a company in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province. Credit: PA

The duo paid around 17p for each pack of 10 masks, before going on to sell them to people across the UK for £7-£8 from their respective eBay accounts.

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They claim they package the masks in a sanitised room in Becker's house.

Gamble said he has now made more than £5,000 on his eBay account, saying that the sales have even helped him win a bet.

He explained: "On the first morning I had four sales and Gabe had none, he was distraught.

"By lunch time I had 500 sales and made a bet with someone that I'd get to 1,000. I did that by the afternoon."

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Credit: BNPS
Credit: BNPS

However, according to the BBC, some doctors aren't entirely convinced that wearing masks like the ones Becker and Gamble are selling will stop people getting ill.

Dr Jake Dunning, head of emerging infections and zoonoses at Public Health England, said: "Although there is a perception that the wearing of facemasks may be beneficial, there is in fact very little evidence of widespread benefit from their use outside of these clinical settings."

Dunning said the masks have to be worn correctly, changed frequently and disposed of safely if they are to work properly.

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Dr David Carrington, of St George's, University of London, also told BBC News that 'routine surgical masks for the public are not an effective protection against viruses or bacteria carried in the air'.

This, he said, was because they were too loose, had no air filter and left the eyes exposed - with some experts warning coronavirus could enter the body through the eyes, an area that many masks don't cover.

Featured Image Credit: BNPS

Topics: uk news, News, coronavirus

Jess Hardiman
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