Melbourne – Small Business Victoria – Magic Mobility
When Magic Mobility introduced customised, all-terrain wheelchairs for use both in the bush and the bedroom, its customers were Melbourne locals.
GIANI: Brands + Environments was involved in designing and developing the ‘Views from the Chair’, a Brand origination strategy that established a platform for the various target markets to take notice of the product lines throughout the launch. Successfully developed and featured as part of Small Business quarterly updates.
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“Every wheelchair was personalised and handmade in our factory,” says general manager Jill Barnett.
But when a US importer expressed interest, the company had a problem: how to provide a personalised service remotely. “We had to work out a business model that would cater to an export market as well.”
The solution, which has propelled the company’s growth into a significant exporter, was to expect more from staff. Detailed assembly instructions were no longer possible. Workers in distant factories had to work out how to customise wheelchairs from sub-assemblies shipped from Australia.
Postgraduate training gave the five-strong leadership team “a view on what needed to be done”, and equipped them to roll out “competitive manufacturing” training to the rest of the 30 staff. The company also offered training to physiotherapists who come in contact with its products.
Magic Mobility, a Noble Park business that designs and manufactures off-road wheelchairs, is the second company to graduate from the Victorian Government’s Design to Business Integration Program. Since undergoing an intensive, onsite analysis of its design capabilities and business model, together with highly tailored mentoring sessions, the company has seen a significant increase in revenue.