Handicare details strategic transformation as it looks to expand in underpenetrated markets
Swedish stairlift giant Handicare has outlined its big ambitions for US stairlift growth to investors and financial analysts via a webcast Capital Markets Update.
One of the leading UK accessibility companies, Handicare is headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden, where its share is listed on the Nasdaq Stockholm following an IPO in October 2017.
Hosting the Capital Markets Update in June via a live webcast for the first time due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, the update saw key senior management leaders within the Group share their plans and insights.
Presentations were made by Johan Ek, President and CEO; Clare Brophy, Executive Commercial Director; Pete Slack, Executive Vice President Operations; and Pernilla Linden, CFO.
The update comes as the Handicare Group continues to embark on its transformation process set out in its strategic review which sees it focus on its accessibility business, as well as restructuring its patient handling operations in North America.
In a move to streamline the business, the organisation divested all the shares in its Danish vehicle conversion subsidiary in December. In mid-April 2020, Handicare completed a further divestment, selling its patient handling division (excluding North America) to Direct Healthcare Group.
“It is a fact that the poor historical performance that we have seen has mainly been coming from the patient handling business, as well as some of the smaller businesses that we had at the point of IPO,” explained Johan during the live webcast.
“So we identified a need to streamline the business and shift the focus on accessibility.”
Having only been in the position of CEO for seven weeks, Johan – who is also Chairman of the Board of Sunrise Medical – replaced Handicare’s former CEO Staffan Ternström towards the end of April 2020 after the Group’s board confirmed the organisation had not performed in line with its potential.
Looking ahead to the steps the company will take to fuel more growth in its accessibility business, Johan confirmed that Handicare will launch its own stairlift production unit in the United States as part of its commitment to investing more resources in growing its accessibility business.
The decision will help reduce the lead times as Handicare looks to capture more market share in the world’s largest stairlift market.
Touching on the impact of COVID-19, Johan revealed revenue in April and May were down 35 per cent against the same period last year. Despite this short-term impact, however, he noted that Handicare’s long-term outlook is favourable.
Delivering a deep dive into the commercial activities for the Group, Clare Brophy revealed that working closely with dealers will continue to be one of its key strategic priorities, alongside developing its product portfolio, improving customer experience and winning the US stairlift market.
Referring specifically to the dealer element, Clare stated: “We will continue to enhance our dealer support programme as we move forward as that not only grows our dealers’ business but it also grows our Handicare business.”
Travelling to Sweden to take part in the webcast, she also emphasised how hard and how successfully the business has had to fight to secure its market share and current position in the sector.
“We will build on the best practices of our UK and European teams and roll them out into underpenetrated markets,” elaborated Clare.
“We want to make our business the supplier of preference for accessibility solutions worldwide and the presentation clearly demonstrated our passion and commitment for achieving that ambition.”
Having helped the company become one of the leading stairlift suppliers domestically as Handicare UK’s Commercial Leader and Managing Director of Companion Stairlifts, Clare was given the responsibility of working the same magic in the UK on commercial activities outside North America since 2018.
Since that time, the business has grown its turnover 6 per cent between 2018 and 2019 in a mature and highly competitive market.
Pete Slack, who has been with Handicare since 2013 and a member of the management team since 2017, focused on how the business is prioritising lead times, investing in a North American production facility and introducing further production efficiency initiatives and continuous lean improvements.
“We’re very proud of our world-class products and services, as well as our talented team and partners who are key to our success,” concluded Clare.
“Our market-leading position in Europe and outstanding reputation are strong foundations for growth and I am excited for our future.”
The webcast is available to view on Handicare’s website https://tv.streamfabriken.com/2020-06-12-handicare-grouphttps://thiis.co.uk/handicare-details-strategic-transformation-as-it-looks-to-expand-in-underpenetrated-markets/https://i1.wp.com/thiis.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/Handicare-1100-Stairlift.jpg?fit=1000%2C707&ssl=1https://i1.wp.com/thiis.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/Handicare-1100-Stairlift.jpg?resize=150%2C150&ssl=1Coronavirus NewsCOVID-19 Trade NewsNewsroomSupplier NewsTrade NewsAccessibility,Capital Markets,Clare Brophy,Direct Healthcare Group,Handicare,Handicare Group,Johan Ek,North America,patient handling,Staffan Ternström,Stairlifts,streamline,Sunrise MedicalSwedish stairlift giant Handicare has outlined its big ambitions for US stairlift growth to investors and financial analysts via a webcast Capital Markets Update.One of the leading UK accessibility companies, Handicare is headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden, where its share is listed on the Nasdaq Stockholm following an IPO in...Calvin BarnettCalvin Barnettcalvin@thiis.co.ukAdministratorTHIIS Magazine