Innovation is part of our heritage. It’s also what drives us forward, now more than ever. Our purpose – to revolutionise care for people and planet – depends on our ability to innovate. You can see the results right across our portfolio, from digital systems that keep the operating room in frictionless flow to wound dressings that absorb, spread and hold fluid in a way that defies gravity.

An entrepreneurial mindset

Innovation does not have to start with R&D. We have developed a process within to Mölnlycke to collect ideas from across the organization. As part of our commitment to lead with passion, we encourage our people to propose ideas – and we undertake to explore them, in the knowledge that radical innovation often takes us into the unknown.

Customer insights

At Mölnlycke, we have an unusually strong partnership with our customers – and this is where innovation begins. Without that connection, we wouldn’t be so aware of their pain points. These apparently small insights can be the seeds from which we grow next-generation solutions to improve care.

The role of R&D

Traditionally, R&D involves an expert team leveraging established knowledge to increase the efficacy of a product or process. We can think of this as incremental innovation, where our products and processes are refined to offer improved outcomes for patients, improved comfort or safety for healthcare professionals and/or increased efficiency for healthcare providers. This incremental approach can also be used to increase the sustainability of products and processes.


"Innovation involves many challenges. For example, we have to learn how to marry creativity with a process, think right across the organisation, set expectations even though we are working with unknowns, let go of our assumptions, accept that we will make mistakes (and learn from them) and be frugal in the way we use resources."

Patrick Le Gal Redon VP of R&D, Operating Room Solutions

Radical innovation

Radical innovation is bolder and potentially more disruptive. It starts with a pain point and perhaps a basic assumption about how to address it. A culture that supports experimentation is important, because there will be mistakes along the way, as we test and validate ideas.

True innovation involves stepping into the unknown and requires the input of a broader multidisciplinary team. The process, at least in its early stages, relies more on breadth than depth of knowledge. R&D is still central, but it takes cross-organisational input to validate ideas and decide what the next steps should look like. It’s also important to build strong external partnerships for specialised support.

"It’s useful to think of the innovation process as a journey. At every step we have a knowledge gap to close and at every step we might have to change direction. It’s a not a journey from A to B but from A to Z. While the R&D team may ask the questions, the answers will be shaped by input from Sales, Marketing, Manufacturing or Logistics/Supply Chain people, and from there a spec will be developed and refined."

Anders Dahlberg Global R&D Director Science and Technology, Wound Care

Digital solutions and ecosystems

The digital journey that led to our Flow companion began with an ethnographic study that identified some important unmet needs in the operating room environment.  A multidisciplinary team was set up to explore user-centric ways to meet these needs. The team drew in expert partners from within and outside Mölnlycke to develop a series of digital solutions. This work gradually became an incubator for an entire digital ecosystem. As our digital portfolio has grown, we have built up a larger Digital Ecosystem Team with members drawn from across the business functions.

Addressing the sustainability challenge

Sustainability is an urgent concern for the MedTech industry. At Mölnlycke, it’s a major driver for innovation, as we find ways to of reduce our environmental impact and bring down emissions while continuing to improve the future of care. As ever, our approach is bold as we strive simultaneously to invent new and reinvent existing products and materials for a brighter future.

More about the Mölnlycke approach to sustainability