An innovative approach to exporting

An innovative approach to exporting

Morgan Innovation & Technology Limited was founded in 1987 and designs and manufactures new medical and commercial products in partnership with customers that lack the necessary expertise, manufacturing capability, or funding to develop their own products. BQ caught up with CEO Nigel Clarke to hear more about how the company broke into overseas markets.

Morgan IAT dedicates 20% of its annual turnover to speculative research and development, launching at least one new product every year and identifying partners to licence or purchase them.

This strategy has seen overseas sales have grow by 70% over the last three years with an increase in UK employees, profitability and overall sales during the period.

Current CEO Nigel Clarke said: “Morgan IAT was founded in 1987 by Sue and Howard Clarke to specifically focus on Howard’s innovative design capabilities, with the company initially specialising in developing medical products.

“In addition to developing our own ideas, we also now work with enterprising individuals, universities and hospitals who have ideas they would like to bring to market.

“We offer a complete idea to manufacture service. Morgan IAT has successfully developed a number of products including its flagship range Neurotherm, which commands over 60% of the world market.”

The company began exporting in 1994 and 22 years on, now exports to almost every corner of the globe from Iraq to the USA.

He added: “We currently export the Neurotherm range of machines to Europe and the USA and we also export a boot for diabetic foot ulcers, PulseFlow, to the USA, Europe, the Middle East and Australasia.”

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Speaking about what inspired the company to export, he said: “The main motivating factor was that the UK market was too small.

“We wanted to increase our sales and saw a need overseas for our innovative products because the pain market was far more prevalent in the USA and Europe than in the UK.

“It was not just about sales though, we wanted to help as many people as possible and make sure that our pioneering ideas reached the people who really needed them.”

When the company started exporting back in 1994, there wasn’t too much support available. The landscape has now changed completely and the company has since sought advice from a number of avenues.

Clarke said: “We did not seek any help in the beginning, however since then we have used the UKTI which has been beneficial in terms of setting up trade missions to Hong Kong and the USA. We have also received support from Santander in the form of a trade mission.”

Looking forward, the company has ambitious plans for the future and Clarke is confident of Morgan increasing its market share in the medical and commercial industries.

“We hope to continue with how we have been whilst introducing the new products we have to our current markets,” added Clarke.

“Our vision is to be the leading innovations company for driving ideas to market. We seek to diversify from the current revenue stream further so that no one customer is greater than 25% of turnover, commercialise at least one product each year and continue to invest up to 20% of turnover into R&D. We want to achieve £12m in revenue by 2020.”

When asked what advice he would give to other companies looking to start exporting, he told BQ: “Look for strategic partnerships in the countries you want to export to. This will lay the solid foundations you need to make exporting easy. Make sure you use all the resources available online as these are often free ways of gaining contacts and progressing in new markets.”

BQ will continue to cover Morgan IAT’s story as the company continues to grow.