Motion Healthcare talks new products, lithium accessibility and dealer relationships at Trade Days
Back in April 2018, Tim Mills, Head of Business Development at Motion Healthcare, showcased the new Lithilite, a lightweight, folding scooter that boasted an impressive 26-mile range at Naidex. THIIS caught back up with Tim after this year’s Trade Days to discover how things have developed six-months on.
How did you find the two days at Trade Days?
“It was great meeting new retailers, showcasing some of our new launches and giving everyone the opportunity to experience the products first-hand. Also, the show gave us the chance to catch up with some of our existing retailers that we do not get to see as much as we would like from around the country.”
Can you tell me more about your new products?
“Recently, we launched the eDrive, our new electric, automatically folding scooter. It is similar to some other models currently on the market but with the main difference being that the battery sits at the back, just underneath the seat.
“This means it is really easy to access when you fold the scooter up and saves you having to buy an expensive offboard charger, which many other models on the market require. It also comes with a free, heavy-duty travel bag which looks nice as well. It is similarly priced to others in the market but dealers get a bit more for their money.
“We have also upgraded the Foldalite, which now comes with offboard charging, a flip-up footrest to allow users to back on easier, as well as a new digital joystick that boasts two or three different power modes which customers can adjust themselves. It adds those important finishing touches to the product that customers like.
“In addition, we have our Lithilite which we launched earlier in the year and is going extremely well. It is light, can be easily dissembled but has a 26-mile range on a 5kg Lithium battery pack which is proving very popular.”
What was the reception like to the new products from the dealers you spoke to at the show?
“In terms of the new Foldalite, people really like the finish and with the eDrive, I think dealers understand that whilst it isn’t revolutionary, it gives them the chance to be a bit more efficient and maybe pay a little bit less for a product that they can make a healthy margin on.
“We have also launched a lithium battery tester. This has proved really popular as there is no way for dealers to test lithium batteries in the market at the moment.”
What advantage will this new piece of equipment give dealers?
“Considering the cost to replace these batteries, this is something that will help save dealers and customers a lot of time and hassle.
“The process of sending batteries back can be expensive and time-consuming, which is frustrating for both the dealer and their customer. Most of the big suppliers are helpful with that but then that is adding capacity to their workloads.
“From a dealer’s perspective, they want to help their customer there and then, so having to send the battery back to a supplier to wait a week to get test results to decide if you are able to replace that or not can be quite a long time.
“For retailers that pride themselves on their customer service, they don’t want to do that. They want to be able to do what they have been doing for years with sealed lead acid batteries and test them themselves.
“Our new piece of equipment allows retailers to do this and, additionally, it helps retailers gain a level of efficiency by being able to catch those lithium batteries that they have had to replace in the past which they may not have had to.
“With the expense of a lithium battery pack, a dealer wouldn’t have to avoid replacing many batteries before they have made back the cost of a tester.”
It sounds like it could make lithium a lot more accessible to retailers that may have been wary of it in the past?
“Definitely. The technology offers a lot to both dealers and their customers so it is great to be able to make it more accessible for our customers.”
Will this be a major push for Motion Healthcare in the next 12 to 24 months?
“It will play a large role, along with lots of new products, including new variations to the existing range we have. Our main focus is on building our retailer network to find people in areas where we are a little weak so that we have a good coverage of the whole of the UK.
“This, combined with bringing new products that other suppliers may not have, is where our focus will be over the coming months.”
Are there any regions where you are particularly looking for dealers?
“We are always on the lookout for reputable dealers. We have areas where we have exclusivity deals and loyalty with retailers but I would encourage dealers to let us know if they are interested in our products.”
You mention loyalty to dealers, what do you feel makes a good retailer/supplier relationship?
“Honesty, trust and transparency. Being able to pick up the phone and have honest conversations is important and works both ways, whilst also being transparent from day one so both parties understand what the level of commitment is and how you will do business together are vital.”
What would an ideal dealer look like to Motion Healthcare?
“We deal with a lot of different retailers so it is difficult to say exactly what an ideal dealer looks like. From a commercial sense, it would be someone who sells a lot of our products, however, there is more to a good dealer than that and it could well be a one-man band who may not sell thousands but really loves the products to bits.
“Ideally, we want someone who understands the products, appreciates what makes them different and is happy to explain that to their customers.”
To find out more about the new range from Motion Healthcare, visit www.motionhealthcare.co.uk