Shoprider enters lift chair biz

Sunday, November 30, 2008

CARSON, Calif.--Shoprider Mobility Products has given its product line-up a lift. The manufacturer, known for its affordable scooters and power wheelchairs, unveiled a lift chair in October.

“With the industry changing so much, more providers are looking at retail,” said Sandy Phillips, vice president of sales and marketing. “This is a product that could help them make up for losses.”

By entering the lift chair market, Shoprider goes head-to-head with manufacturers like Golden Technologies, Pride Mobility Products and Med-Lift & Mobility. Its lift chair doesn’t have a name, but it has a slogan: “Lift up your life.”

Even though Medicare reimburses for lift actuators, the devices that elevate the chairs, Shoprider plans to price its lift chair under $1,000 so providers can market it as a retail item. Typically, lift chairs cost anywhere from $750 to $1,600, Phillips said.

In developing its three-position lift chair, Shoprider kept the following in mind, Phillips said: simplicity (“Providers don’t like to be confused with 12 different models.”); durability (“We tested the lift chair for several months to make sure it lasts.”); comfort (It’s upholstered in micro fiber); and noise control.

“We wanted to make it something for everyone,” she said. “It’s not the economy version; it’s not the high-end luxury version. It’s the mid-stream version.”