Who's in your big picture?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

YARMOUTH, Maine - Paul Rising travels to 50 countries a year as senior vice president of international sales for Pride Mobility Products. Here's what he had to say about why providers should buy their products from a global manufacturer and more.

Size does matter

Pride Mobility has six brick-and-mortar facilities in Canada, the U.K., Holland, Italy, Australia and New Zealand. "We continue to look to grow, but we're selective in where we choose to do business," Rising said. "You have to be selective because some of the business is also driven by local manufacturers. It's very difficult, at times, to go into a market where there's a strong local presence. Locals like to deal with locals. We also try to target much larger markets (overseas), like the U.K."

Same or similar?

While Pride Mobility may have two versions of its Victory scooter here in the United States, it may have 10 versions overseas, depending on a country's requirements for and restrictions on speed, battery size, etc., Rising said. "Every country is different," he said.

It's a strong play

With so many pressures in the United States, Pride Mobility sees international sales as "a strong play," Rising said. "Diversification is always key," he said. "And mobility is a growing need everywhere. You have to look at it globally and that's what we've done. We want to target the global picture of mobility."

A business partner you want

Providers should look to a global manufacturer for HME, just as they would for an electronics product, Rising said. "If you look at some of the great companies as a whole, like say a GE, everyone's looking at the emerging markets," he said. "It's a part of overall business strategies and structures. Those places, as far as raw materials go, sourcing and purchasing power--that should be in your big picture in who you select to partner with long term."

Foreign language not required

Despite all his travels, Rising's not fluent in another language. "I'm a little bit older," he said. "To learn a language would take a lot."