At the age of 16 Kevin Smith was paralysed from the waist down after a car accident. Mr Smith could not find a suitable mobility vehicle which inspired him to become the founder of Mobility UK Solutions, the main supplier of mobility equipment for the NHS and which has recently opened a shop in Poole.
After ten years of being the only business in the UK that sells second-hand mobility vehicles, Mobility UK has now come to Poole because, “Our business is to serve certain areas of the town, but being so close to the hospital we felt there was a gap in the market in Poole,” said Colin Heath, Commercial Director of Mobility UK Solutions. The equipment they sell includes bathroom aids, mobility scooters, both manual and powered wheel chairs, vehicle adaptions and second-hand adapted vehicles.
Mr. Heath attributes the success of the company to its policy of personal services. “The company has grown year by year, we continue to grow now, we’re a small company with big ambitions. We’ve expanded in 3 areas, our retail area, our servicing division, our UK Access moves us into schools, hotels etc.”
However Mr. Heath would not credit the business arrangement with NHS for their enormous success. “Sometimes the NHS standard equipment is too basic for the specialised needs of most customers, that is when they chose to come to us.”
Their business strategy is to deal mostly in second-hand vehicles donated by care centres or people who wish to buy a new one.
“Because so many perfectly good ones get thrown away, we restore them, then sell them at a cheaper value than most mobility companies” said Mr. Heath.
The number of companies specialising in this field is very small despite the huge need. Mr. Heath says this is because “it is a specialised business and a lot of people don’t have the knowledge to do anything about it.”
The company is already accepting orders from different counties around the UK like Hampshire and Somerset, but is also looking to expand internationally.
Images: by Nickta Rowaichi