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How mobility scooters went from garage project to multibillion-dollar industry

The brand still operates today, but is just a tiny player in what has become a massive assistive technology industry — one that’s making people a lot of money. As life expectancy skyrockets and public attitudes about disability improve, the market for products like mobility scooters has multiplied exponentially.

Nearly one in four Americans is expected to have a disability by 2030. “It’s not charity any longer,” Jani Nayar, executive coordinator for the Society for Accessible Travel and Hospitality, told The New York Times. “This is good for business.”

The US assistive technology market is projected to grow from $43.1 billion in 2015 to $58.3 billion in 2020. These numbers include a wide range of products, from contact lenses to walking canes. The global mobility wheelchair industry alone will reach $2.4 billion by 2021.


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