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Freerider primes pump with outside sales reps

Freerider primes pump with outside sales reps Company hopes sales reps can help retail-challenged HME providers market and sell Luggie scooters

RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. - FreeRider, maker of the Luggie scooter, began using outside sales reps for the first time in 2014.

The company contracted with four reps in January to help cover four states: California, Arizona, Iowa and Illinois. The goal, says Jean Wu: to have one rep for each state.

“We don't have deep pockets, so I got my boss to agree to a commission-only structure,” said Wu, sales and marketing director. “I'm talking to others, as well.”

Until now, Wu has been pretty much a one-woman sales team. Even though FreeRider's “awesome staff” has pitched in where and when it could, there was only so much ground the company could cover, she says.

FreeRider wants feet on the ground in each state because, when it comes to selling scooters for cash, HME providers still need handholding, Wu says.

“That's where we're hoping the sales reps will come in—to help them market and sell the products,” she said.

In her many visits to the showrooms of current and potential provider customers, Wu has often been disappointed in what she sees.

“I found that me signing them up is one thing—them actually getting a lot of business is another,” she said. “Our equipment is sort of odd ball; it looks like a baby scooter. So when they're not demonstrating the equipment, the customer has no idea what to think.”

Wu is confident that the move to add outside reps to build FreeRider's base of providers and jolt their sales will pay off.

“Our scooter is a cash item and the margin is great,” she said. “Because of the way the market is right now with Medicare, I think our product can bring in the money providers need.”

But providers have to be up to the task, Wu says.

“They have to work for it,” she said.


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