STAFF at Basingstoke-based prosthetics manufacturer Blatchford are celebrating more success after the firm scooped three awards from the Engineering Employers’ Federation (EEF).
Chief executive officer Stephen Blatchford, who attended the EEF National Awards dinner in London last week, said: “We were amazed and delighted to have won the Smart Product Award, the Export Growth Award and most importantly of all the Winner of Winners Award. It is a great honour and a huge recognition of all that our talented staff does.”
The company won the first award for the development of its Elan Foot – an electronically-controlled foot and ankle system which senses speed and terrain. It responds instantly, ensuring that an amputee can take on the demands of an active lifestyle.
The foot will correctly position itself for each step regardless of whether the user is traversing ramps, stairs or flat ground and it also gives a boost when an individual walks at higher speeds.
The Export Growth award was for Blatchford’s business development in the United States.
According to Mr Blatchford, this required new thinking in terms of market size, regional requirements for product and reimbursement and penetration strategy.
“We took a complex product into a complex overseas market, making adjustments to meet demand,” explained Mr Blatchford.
“The USA is the world’s largest market for lower limb prosthetic products. Over a five-year period, we increased our product development, production, engineering and support teams – investing significantly in new production equipment.
“We are delighted with our results as our sales have grown above expectations with increased margins making a significant impact on our business.”
The Winner of Winners accolade was won by virtue of the company being presented with the other two awards on the night.
Mr Blatchford leads a family company which is now almost 125 years old.
Headquartered at Kingsland Business Park, in Basingstoke, it holds over one-third of NHS contracts for provision of prosthetics, and its staff provide the limb services for servicemen and women at the Ministry of Defence’s Headley Court Rehabilitation Centre in Surrey.