A formal proposal was approved by WHO legal department in 2012, which includes the overall aim of improving systems, education and research in order to provide a public health benefit by reducing health care-associated infections (HAI). Criteria for participation are clear and a code of conduct and finance details are outlined. Implementation was approved as a protected web-based platform to allow for targeted interaction, with a first year aim of evaluating this. A total of 14 companies from industries related to improving patient safety through hand hygiene responded to the call from WHO and have signed up to the code of conduct and provided finance. An editorial and note for the media announcing the collaborative and its name ‘Private Organisations for Patient Safety (POPS)’ was issued in 2012 to support transparency. One formal collaborative project has been undertaken.