Drive does rehab

Company sees product category as ‘opportunity for growth’
Tuesday, December 22, 2015

PORT WASHINGTON, N.Y. – Drive|DeVilbiss Healthcare as the new home for products from Wenzelite, Columbia Medical and Specialised Orthotic Services.

Wenzelite has been part of Drive since 2003, but the more recent additions of Columbia Medical and SOS made a separate category for rehab a priority, company officials say.

“It will give Drive a real focus in rehab,” said Gary Werschmidt, CEO of Columbia Medical. “We want to make sure these products have the attention to be more successful.”

Drive bought both Columbia Medical, a Santa Springs, Calif.-based manufacturer of mobility products for the pediatric market, and SOS, a U.K.-based manufacturer of seating and mobility products, in 2015.

While the move will mean a certain amount of “lining up” of the products, sales staff and resources of each company, officials say Drive will, at the end of the day, “add additional resources,” including a regional vice president, to the category.

“There’s a certain clinical component to rehab that requires it,” Werschmidt said.

Drive sees in rehab, which has been largely untouched by Medicare’s competitive bidding program, a market with “opportunity for growth,” company officials say.

“There isn’t that same pressure, and there’s little competition,” Werschmidt said.

Company officials liken what Drive is doing with rehab to what it already has done with respiratory—upped its clinical game through acquisitions. Drive also bought DeVilbiss Healthcare in 2015.

“If you think of the evolution of Drive, in the early days, it was a me-too company—that’s how we got the ball rolling,” said Doug Francis, principal and co-founder of Drive. “With Columbia, we’ve added a level of complexity and expertise, and with SOS we have even more of a focus. Now we’re actually looking to take more of a leadership role.”