A New Line into Innovation; Company's New Venture Will Concentrate on the R&D of Clinical Equipment

Article excerpt

Byline: Will Smale

WILLIAMS Medical Supplies is diversifying into product development.

Already the largest supplier of medical equipment and pharmaceuticals in the UK, the Rhymney-based company is to start designing and manufacturing its own products.

Its new design and development division will be led by Robert Steele, a chartered engineer who has spent most of his career in the medical and surgical supplies industry.

He has been appointed as technical director, with a brief to oversee research and development.

'The decision to diversify into product development has been a result of a gradual build up,' Mr Steele said.

'Williams Medical has acquired some businesses that have their own manufacturing divisions, so it got to the stage where the company needed to manage all this technical expertise.'

Williams Medical has decided that the new venture will concentrate on developing medical equipment for hospitals and clinics, and Mr Steele says he will be liaising widely with National Health Service staff.

'We will be looking at ways to develop and evolve existing products in the first instance,' he said.

'We are now setting up contacts within some of the innovation groups in the NHS to start gathering ideas for new products, or improving existing developments. …