Cash corner: Mobilegs

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

BLOOMINGTON, Minn. – The designer best known for the stylish and ergonomic Aeron chair has the HME bug.

Jeff Weber has already designed and gone to market with crutches called Mobilegs, and he has other HME in the development pipeline. The crutches were named to Popular Science Magazine’s “Best of What’s New in 2010.”

“Our experience (in seating design) absolutely relates, in the understanding of the human anatomy and in applying material science and technologies, to different applications like Mobilegs,” said Weber, owner of Studio Weber + Associates.

Mobilegs’ features include a saddle that breathes and pivots; a handle that distributes pressure into the meaty part of a user’s hands; and a foot that rocks. The crutches fit all adults.

Weber designed Mobilegs after breaking a bone in his left foot.

“I was issued a standard product and in a fairly short period of time, I recognized the inefficiencies of the product and the irritation and secondary trauma it caused,” he said.

Now Weber’s in the midst of designing and getting out to market the Mobistick (cane), Mobiwalk (walker) and Mobigo (knee cart).

Right now, most Mobilegs are bought online directly by consumers, but some O&P centers and hospitals also stock the crutches. What about HME providers?

“That’s been a little harder of a market to crack,” said Todd Nelson, vice president of marketing, public relations and business development for Mobilegs. “The HME industry tends to have a lot of mom-and-pop shops that are more interested in higher margin products, so we’re working on different pricing models, so they can capture more of a margin.”

Mobilegs Universal retails for $69.99 and Mobilegs Ultra retails for $99.99.