For Blade Air, The Future is Clean Air for All
For Joe Fida, childhood summers with nonna typically involved breathing life into juicy, red tomatoes in her thriving garden, learning the ins and outs of yielding a fruitful crop each season. But beyond the warm months, Joe dreamt of a garden that could flourish in the winter. A chemical engineer by trade, Joe’s afternoons of working the soil became the breeding ground for what would later become one of Canada’s fastest growing companies.
After struggling to find a carbon filter that met his needs when growing exotic fruits in his indoor grow tent during Canada’s harsh winters, Fida did what every engineer would do: he built his own. And with that, Blade Air was born.
“Most university students don’t spend their days growing cherry and lychee trees in their dorm, but that was life with Joe,” said Aedan Fida, CEO and co-founder of Blade Air. “Joe became increasingly frustrated with the current carbon filter options on the market, as they were all too expensive, inefficient and wasteful. Creating a filter that was both effective and environmentally-friendly became his driving force.”
Founded to develop zero-waste carbon filters in 2017, co-founders and brothers Joe Fida, aged 28, Aedan Fida, 26, and friend Giancarlo Sessa, 26, pivoted during the pandemic to air purification technology and indoor air quality. With the foresight and vision to realize air would become the next frontier of health care, they are on a mission to educate and provide the tools needed to provide clean air for all.
“When we entered the air filtration industry, it was really important for us to disrupt the industry and do things differently,” said Giancarlo Sessa, chief strategy officer and co-founder of Blade Air. “In air filtration, there is no one-size-fits-all approach so it was critical for us to offer a range of solutions that can be tailored to each of our customers’ needs and existing HVAC systems.”
Unlike its competitors who typically manufacture one product, Blade Air offers a suite of products, including HEPA, electrostatic, carbon and UV-C filtration, delivering a customized approach for every demand.
Since its inception, the founders have been smashing the status quo and debunking common misconceptions about indoor air quality—most prominently that indoor air can be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air, a statistic that drew interest from Toronto’s Gooderham & Worts Distillery District. Widely regarded as Canada’s premier arts and culture destination, the Distillery District is an internationally acclaimed village of brick-lined streets, known for its rich history and identity with buildings that have been preserved and used for more than 150 years.
In 2021, the District’s management team reached out to Blade Air looking to improve indoor air quality—a key priority for the buildings post-pandemic. But there was a catch: they didn’t want to increase energy consumption. For Blade Air, this was the ultimate challenge.
The Distillery District had already transitioned to MERV-13 filters, but its older HVAC system couldn’t manage the pressure, limiting optimal airflow performance. It quickly became clear that the space would benefit from electrostatic filters, upgrading the existing power-heavy air filtration system. This change not only improved the Distillery’s existing viral capture rate by 50 per cent, but also its air quality by 2.25 times while reducing motor consumption by 75 per cent.
“There is a common misconception that you have to choose between energy efficiency and improved indoor air quality, and that’s simply not true,” said Joe Fida, chief innovation officer and co-founder of Blade Air. “Finding that symbiotic balance between the two is our north star, and is the reason that we do what we do.”
The Blade Air founders’ passion for air runs deep. With over 30 employees, $75M in revenue and a presence in thousands of school boards and government buildings throughout Canada, Blade Air is considered one of the most prominent players in the market. For a limited time, organizations can test the efficacy of Blade Air’s revolutionized electrostatic filters at no cost with their Confidence without Compromise Program. For Sessa and the Fida brothers, the future is clear: clean air for all.