Mumbai: Four years after opening a sales subsidiary in India, Swedish hospital equipment technology giant Huntleigh Healthcare Technology Plc. is now planning toset up its first manufacturing plant in the country to cater to international markets.
The company, which is currently part of the €1.7 billion (Rs9,486 crore) Getinge AB Group after the latter’s acquisition of Huntleigh in January, has bought about 10 acres of land near Ranjangaon in Pune to set up the factory.
Huntleigh Healthcare designs and manufactures in the UK for a global market an extensive range of non-invasive health-care devices and instrumentation and control systems for medical applications. The company, the largest hospital equipment maker in the world by sales (€650 million), currently manufactures and markets hospital equipment such as hospital beds (motorized as well as manual), pressure area care devices for the prevention and treatment of pressure ulcers, defibrillators, and intermittent compression products for the prevention of deep vein thrombosis, as also wares for wound and oedema management, foetal, vascular and cardiac assessment, and for monitoring vital signs.
“The Pune factory is likely to go on stream in a year or so, though there has been some revision in the initial plan as the new group is yet to decide on which category of products the plant should cater to,” Huntleigh India managing director Chander P.Tahiliani said.
“According to Huntleigh’s global model of operation, each of its manufacturing facility specializes in certain areas of products for the global requirement,” Tahiliani said, adding that the Indian plant would “most probably” be a global sourcing centre for motorized hospital beds.
Tahiliani declined to give details of the quantum of investment being made in the Indian facility. Huntleigh’s plan to dedicate the Indian plant to motorized or electrical beds and heavy-patient handling equipment used in hospitals could be significant because the worldwide demand for such products has increased manifold after a recent ban on manual beds and equipment in the US and Europe.
In India, since the health-care industry has been witnessing a boom in the last few years following the entry of large corporate houses into the sector, in addition to the proposed large health-care investments by the public sector, the demand for hospital equipment is expected to grow at the rate of 35-40%. “At present, there are not many players in the motorized bed segment in the country. So our plan is to tap the growing market potential locally too,” said Tahiliani.
Vendors estimate the hospital equipment demand in India to be more than Rs2,000 crore. That market is led by large players such as GE Healthcare, Siemens AG and Carestream Health, who are mainly operating in the market for diagnostics and imaging systems. Huntleigh is the only multinational player in the non-diagnostics area in the hospital equipment market. This includes, apart from motorized and manual hospital beds, beds for child delivery, patient trolleys, surgery tables and physiotherapy equipment This non-diagnostic equipment market in India is about one-tenth of the total hospital equipment market.