Herida Healthcare Ltd, the Leeds based manufacturer of specialised dynamic and static mattresses and cushions designed to relieve pressure and friction for bed-bound patients, has been awarded the Innovative Product of the Year accolade at the National Association of Equipment Providers Awards 2018.
Becoming a national award-winning business, the company attributes its ongoing success and recognition to the support that it has received from a number of programmes that are delivered throughout the Leeds City Region.
On course to achieve a turnover of £3.5m in their third year of trading, the business has benefitted from funding and practical support and guidance from AD:VENTURE, the ERDF funded Digital Enterprise Programme, the Manufacturing Growth Programme and the Business Growth Programme.
AD:VENTURE provided a match-funded grant of £11,000 to invest in manufacturing resource planning equipment, including bar coding and scanning items, along with practical support; the Digital Enterprise Programme awarded a £5,000 grant, the Manufacturing Growth Programme supported consultancy costs as the business worked towards securing ISO 14001 and ISO 9001 (2015).
As a result of the support that Herida has secured, as well as becoming a national award-winning business, it has expanded quickly which has led to the appointment of a quality control supervisor, and a dedicated customer service & telesales team, whilst future plans are now in place to recruit for a further seven jobs in sales and business development over the next twelve months.
Managing director Neil Smith said: “I seem to be excited every time I come into work. When I see such talent and the enthusiasm that success itself creates, it’s better than anything we could acquire or implement strategically.
“The team within the Herida Healthcare Group of companies are some of the most professional individuals that I have had the pleasure of working with during my career.
“We’ve recruited a new financial controller and marketing manager in the last few months which is key to supporting our rapid growth. Our Export market has been instrumental to our strategic focus and this now represents around a third of our turnover. I’m really looking forward to 2018 and beyond. It’s such a privilege to lead an exceptional team.”
Operations director for Herida, John Kay, said: “The board, supported financially by our Principal Investor and also programmes linked to Leeds Council and European funding, such as the Leeds City Region LEP, AD:VENTURE, Digital Enterprise and the Manufacturing Growth Programme have all been instrumental in taking the business forward so quickly.
“These parties have approved capital investment in 2017/ 2018 of around £300,000, primarily towards the purchase of leading edge manufacturing machinery and IT infrastructure”.
Chair of the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership, Roger Marsh OBE, said: “Herida is a great example of how programmes across the region are benefitting businesses through a combined approach that delivers practical support as well as grant provision. Not only does this showcase how each initiative can complement the other but also how they can support young and innovative companies to overcome hurdles to growth.
“We would like to congratulate Herida on the recent award success and very much look forward to following their enterprise journey. We are sure that there will be much more to celebrate as the business continues to flourish and becomes an example of best practice for others across the region.”
The winning award submission was based on a case study which explained that after Herida was approved by both the Moving and Handling and Tissue Viability Services, they partnered with Permobil® to combine technologically advanced insight with its specialist design and manufacturing capabilities to create the perfect hybrid mattress.
The mattress was used to address the complex and specific challenges that a bed-bound patient was experiencing, leading to chronic discomfort, as well as sores and flesh wounds caused by the position they were sitting in all day.
Despite previous attempts to work on suitable interventions for the patient, no other product had resulted in a successful outcome. Using the Herida Yorkshire, the individual is now comfortable and can lead a life free from the daily worry of infected sores.
Herida is just one company that has benefitted from the help and support that can be accessed by start-ups and innovative businesses with high growth potential in the Leeds City Region. For more information about the programmes that are available, please visit www.ad-venture.org.uk.