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BraunAbility and Q’STRAINT Announce Transformative Mobility Venture
BraunAbility acquires controlling interest in Q’STRAINT, a global mobility company with operations in the UK, US and Europe.
INDIANAPOLIS – June 3, 2021 – – For nearly 50 years, BraunAbility has been a leading manufacturer of wheelchair-accessible vehicles and wheelchair lifts. For more than 35 years, Q’STRAINT has focused on wheelchair passenger safety inside the vehicle as a leading provider of wheelchair and occupant securement solutions.
Today, the two companies announce a new venture to accelerate innovation for their customers and keep pace with the technologies rapidly transforming the automotive landscape. One significant opportunity of the venture will be greater integration of the design process, which will set the stage for systems-based solutions. This vertically integrated approach to design holds significant potential for enhanced safety, quality, and reliability for the disability community. As part of the terms of the venture, BraunAbility acquired a majority ownership position in Q’STRAINT. The transaction closed on May 28 of this year.
“Wheelchair passengers face such a segmented experience when they travel,” said Patrick Girardin, co-president of Q’STRAINT. “We see huge opportunities for integrating technologies and creating a new story, rewritten for inclusion. Together, we help ensure that new products create a more intuitive and effortless experience for our customers.”
Major original equipment manufacturer automotive and consumer technology players have announced hundreds of billions of dollars in future investment in electric and autonomous vehicles. BraunAbility and Q’STRAINT are teaming up to ensure these rapidly advancing technologies include solutions for the disability community.
“The shift to these new technologies has the potential to change a remarkable number of lives if they are designed for inclusion,” said Staci Kroon, global president and chief executive officer of BraunAbility. “To keep pace with this historic change, our industry must combine research and development investments and other resources, so wheelchair users are included in the future of mobility.”
The combined effort will prioritize consumer innovation while maintaining the same industry-leading levels of technology, support and service for their dealer and commercial partners. One such breakthrough is QUANTUM, the only system that offers wheelchair passengers of public transit buses complete independence by allowing them to secure themselves without assistance from the bus operator. This timesaving, contactless technology allows the wheelchair passenger to board quickly and safely while the driver focuses on operating on schedule.
“Both our companies have customer-first cultures and prioritize the value of our long-term business partnerships,” said Kroon. “At BraunAbility, we say, ‘Today, Tomorrow, Together,’ because the best way to fulfill our mission to increase mobility in our communities is to partner with our dealers and commercial customers. This belief is common to both Q’STRAINT and us.”
Combined, BraunAbility and Q’STRAINT offer mobility products in more than 70 countries with substantial operations in the United States, the United Kingdom, and mainland Europe. As part of the venture, BraunAbility has acquired a majority interest in Q’STRAINT, including its mobility business in the UK.
“In the end, it’s the customers who will win,” said Julie Boynton, co-president of Q’STRAINT. “Because our missions don’t change, they will simply work together to change more lives.”
About BraunAbility: BraunAbility is a leading manufacturer of mobility transportation solutions, including wheelchair accessible vehicles, wheelchair lifts and seating, storage, and securement products. Founded nearly 50 years ago by Ralph Braun, an entrepreneur who spent most of his life in a wheelchair, the company has grown into a well-known and trusted name in the mobility industry, bringing independence to millions of individuals across the world. BraunAbility is a wholly owned subsidiary of Patricia Industries, a division of Investor AB. Visit BraunAbility.com for more information. Press inquiries can be submitted to [email protected]. For information about the venture, please contact Theo Verginis, general counsel, at [email protected]
About Q’STRAINT: For over 35 years, Q’STRAINT has been an industry leader in Wheelchair Passenger Safety Solutions focused on developing the most innovative solutions to advance the safety and effectiveness of wheelchair passenger travel. From our headquarters located in Oakland Park, Florida the diverse global staff serves customers in more than 70 countries. With sales and a direct presence throughout North and South America, Europe, Australia, Asia, the Middle East and Africa, we design, engineer, and test our safety solutions for integration with nearly every major automotive OEM globally. Our Mission of “Making Safety Accessible” ensures that wheelchair passengers get access to the same levels of safety as those around them. For more information, visit qstraint.com or follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin.
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