St Helens based manufacturing company, Inovus is disrupting the medical device market by offering affordable simulation devices to individuals and institutions thanks to support from St Helens Chamber Access to Specialist Service programme.
Dr Elliot Street, Chief Executive Officer at Inovus, talks about what they do and their plans for future growth.
“We are a medical device manufacturing company and our core products are a range of medical simulators and training aids,” explains Dr Street. “Our core simulators are for training surgeons in Laparoscopic or keyhole surgery. We have the world’s most affordable range of Laparoscopic trainers, which we sell directly to training surgeons to allow them to carry out personalised “take home” training. We pioneered this model and remain the market leaders for take home simulators.
Inovus also offer a complementary range of institutional laparoscopic simulators aimed at use in Universities, teaching hospitals and medical schools, as well as a number of products aimed at training CPR and airway management.
Dr Street adds: “Our most recent product is the Sellick Cricoid pressure trainer, designed for anaesthetists and anaesthetic assistants. Before the Sellick was released our training clinicians were having to make do with a set of weighing scales to practice this crucial skill.
“Our simulator not only allows accurate, high-quality training of this but is affordable to healthcare systems who are under financial strain. As a result the uptake of Sellick has been remarkable.”
With growing demand for their product range the company has moved into new premises in St Helens and is expanding its operations. Their manufacturing capabilities include laser cutting, CNC cutting, 3D printing, silicone injection moulding and plastic fabrication. Their expansion has been aided in part by grant funding from St Helens Chamber.
Dr Street said: “We’ve received grant funding from St Helens Chamber through the Access to Specialist Service programme, which has allowed us to increase our plant and machinery and manufacturing capabilities.
“The grant has also been instrumental in helping us achieve and work towards gaining an ISO accreditation in quality management and we are not far off that now which is great.”
As well as providing financial assistance to Inovus, St Helens Chamber has also supported the business in their vision to keep growing the business in order to become a prominent employer for St Helens.
Dr Street continued: “The Chamber has given us the opportunity to network with the local business infrastructure in St Helens, which we are keen to work closely with.
“The Chamber has been absolutely excellent and the staff approachable, knowledgeable and supportive of what we do as a company. Everyone we speak to there is very complimentary and does as much as they can do to help us.
“We are doing all we can to drive job creation in St Helens in manufacturing, design, engineering, sales and marketing roles. We hope to become a growing employer in St Helens and we are open to people approaching us with these skill sets.”
The Access to Specialist Services project offers grants of up to 35% of the cost of using external specialist services and consultancy. The programme can assist with a wide range of projects for business growth, such as support with tendering, marketing, and gaining industry accreditations. Grant funding is available to St Helens-based SMEs, operating in a business-to-business capacity. The project is part of the New Markets 2 Programme, which is funded by the European Regional Development Fund.
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