The engineers at Howard Wright spend a lot of time talking to doctors, nurses and therapists. In fact, it’s a key part of the job description.

The engineers at Howard Wright spend a lot of time talking to doctors, nurses and therapists. In fact, it’s a key part of the job description.

From humble beginnings in a home workshop in New Plymouth, motor mechanic Howard Wright discovered that he could engineer a hospital bed to improve health care.  The company was founded in 1963, and since then Howard Wright has developed a reputation as a leading designer in the medical bed and stretcher field.

They have achieved this through a philosophy of continuous improvement and a simple purpose; “to make human care easier”.  Their products are renowned for improving the day-to-day experience of nurses, maintenance staff, patients and even their family members paying a visit.

Innovation is imbedded in the company philosophy, and Venture Taranaki has worked alongside Howard Wright for more than 10 years, helping them to access a range of research and development funding programmes, including student grants, to give the next generation of engineers the hands-on experience they need.

“Every engagement and service provided to us by Venture Taranaki has been important and beneficial, whether supporting our operational efficiency improvement, market development or R&D activities” says CEO Bruce Moller.

“If we had to single out one engagement and service which has been the most valuable, it would be the support we received initially through the New Zealand Trade & Enterprise Better by Design programme, which enabled us to transition to the R&D Growth Grant.  Excellent design and R&D sets us apart from our competitors and it is fundamental to our market positioning and export growth plans.”

From their new purpose-built factory and design facility located in the shadow of Mount Taranaki in New Plymouth, the Howard Wright team lives and breathes the designing, making and exporting of quality hospital beds, stretchers and shower trolleys. 
Having won four international design awards, including the supreme award in the Australian International Design Awards, Howard Wright’s M8 Intensive Care bed has become a bed of choice for discerning private and public health providers in Australasia and beyond.

The new M9 Stretcher range is also proving successful in New Zealand and Australia, and offers features like radiolucent deck, electric handset with battery backup, outstanding low height and 250kg Safe Working Load.  However, it is the human touch that gives Howard Wright their competitive edge.

“The R&D team is motivated by user empathy.  Our products are simple, smart and human”, says Research & Development Manager Anthony Batley.

“In our model shop we can test ideas quickly and frequently. It means our full prototype models are more comprehensive and complete, so we can efficiently release a product that is right first time.”

For more information on the services that can help your business grow and succeed, contact Venture Taranaki on 06 759 5150 or email