Herida Healthcare Dave Emmerson (Head of Ops) and – on right - John Bentley (MD)
Dave Emmerson (left) and John Bentley

Pressure care and moving & handling manufacturer Herida Healthcare has appointed a new managing director and head of operations, with former MD and co-founder Neil Smith stepping into the role of chairman.

Based in Leeds, Herida Healthcare was set up by entrepreneurs Neil Smith and John Kay and started trading three and a half years ago with its range of British-manufactured pressure care mattress and cushions.

Following the success of its pressure care operations, the two decided to launch its Herida Moving and Handling proposition in November 2018 – a sector familiar to Neil who had been the owner of Mackworth Healthcare before selling the company to Prism Medical UK in 2015.

Now taking a back seat from the day-to-day running off the company, Neil Smith has passed over the MD reins to John Bentley, who joins the company with significant experience leading organisations, particularly in the wound care sector with brands such as Smith & Nephew and Molnlycke

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In addition to the appointment of John, David Emmerson joins the company as the Head of Operations from Johnson & Johnson.

Explaining his decision to join Herida, John told THIIS: “Meeting Neil for this first time, his passion for the business was infectious and I very quickly made the decision that Herida was the company I wanted to lead as my next career challenge.

“I have worked in large manufacturing organisations with complex international matrix structures and also medical device distributors; however, it was the fast-paced, dynamic and rapidly growing business at Herida that made the MD role here so attractive.”

According to the company, it has spent the summer preparing for significant growth, both domestically and overseas, with the management team planning and setting the foundations which it intends to build on.

In particular, the appointments come ahead of the manufacturer’s pending move to new, bespoke and larger manufacturing facilities.

Discussing the appointment of a Head of Operations, John commented: “During the recruitment process, I was able to spend time with all the existing management team in John Kay, Dani Sharp, Sue Dolman and Paul Rabin. I was hugely impressed by the customer-focused orientation and can-do attitude from all of the team. It was clear that they very much have a growth mindset and willingness to explore new and different approaches to develop the business.

“The recruitment of Dave Emmerson only strengthens this team, allowing John Kay to give increased focus to our quality and regulatory processes which will be key as our volumes and numbers of customers increase.”

With plans to introduce new operational procedures, David went into more detail about what the future holds for the organisation.

“The existing team have done a great job by bringing the business from conception a little over three and a half years ago to that of a very profitable, large-scale, British-manufacturing outfit, serving a global customer base,” he said.

“I am looking forward to working with the existing team, in order to apply methods such as Kaizen and Rapid A3 processes, in order to create lean management and manufacturing processes. Productivity improvements and of course efficiencies will soon follow.

“All this application will be conducted inside a brand-new factory, which provides in effect a clean slate, which is built on some very robust and existing processes. It really is a fantastic opportunity for all at Herida and one that I am relishing”.

Outlining his ambitions for the future of Herida, John added: “I strongly believe that we can continue the growth with the current momentum that we have and the move to new premises will accelerate our performance, capabilities and capacity.

“I am really looking forward to meeting our existing customers and supporting our commercial teams in securing new contracts both here in the UK and on a wider basis supporting our international business partners.”

Highlighting that John was by far the clear choice from a wide group of talented applicants, Neil Smith maintained that his sales and marketing experience in competitive areas will help Herida to accelerate its growth in the bustling pressure care and moving & handling markets.

“His significant skills in managing diverse teams and his familiarity of business integration, post-acquisition, will become a useful attribute in the future. He is the leader that Herida needs to take our business and its team to the next level and I’m delighted that he has chosen us to apply his skillset with us,” finished Neil.

“With John captaining our ship, then alongside the existing and experienced team, we have also strengthened the Operational capabilities with David Emmerson’s appointment. This key role, coupled with John and the remaining and stable management, allows Herida to prepare in all aspects for the next important chapter, in our short but very successful history to date.

“I leave as MD with mixed emotions of pride and sadness. The company is now in very good shape. However, I’m confident to leave with the knowledge that she is in the safest and most capable hands to take her forward. I’d like to thank the management, whole team and not forgetting our highly valued customers for their support to myself and for bringing us to this stage. I wish them well for the next step of the journey and am confident of their abilities to create bigger and better things together.”

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https://thiis.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/Herida-featured.jpghttps://thiis.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/Herida-featured-150x150.jpgCalvin BarnettAnalysis & InsightsNew to the TeamNewsroomSupplier NewsDavid Emmerson,Herida Healthcare,Herida Moving and Handling,John Bentley,John Kay,Leeds,management,Managing Director,moving and handling,Neil SmithPressure care and moving & handling manufacturer Herida Healthcare has appointed a new managing director and head of operations, with former MD and co-founder Neil Smith stepping into the role of chairman. Based in Leeds, Herida Healthcare was set up by entrepreneurs Neil Smith and John Kay and started trading...News, views & products for mobility, access and independent living professionals