KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-news - since 2002
20th January 2017
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Have you seen the video that's gone viral on social media, of the OaSense shower that switches itself off when whoever's in the shower, moves out from underneath?
Forgive me if this type of gadget is old hat (I've never come across one before) but what a great idea! I'd always thought that if I wanted to really stop wasting shower water I had to manually turn off the tap while lathering or shampooing and then turn it on again to rinse - bad enough with a mixer, but a real pain if you're struggling to get the temperature right using two taps. The video shows how well it all works. And it's not just water (about 50% of it) that's saved... because the shampoo, conditioner or shower gel you might be using, isn't being constantly blasted with water, you'll save product too... and of course less product used means less strain on your household bills and less damage caused to the environment.
OaSense has a button for easily switching between 'sense' and 'standard' modes to cater for all the household's showering needs and it operates on four AA batteries that switch the unit to 'standard' when they're expiring (after about a year). This means replacing batteries will never be an emergency task - your shower will always work, one way or another!
It's often said that the best ideas come to us in the shower and I think the same can be said for Californian Evan Schneider, who, while showering in 2015 and musing on how to beat the drought, realised that a large proportion of shower time is spent doing things that don't require running water, like shampooing and lathering.
Since then, he's designed, tested, and refined this idea into a product that he's trying to launch through a Kickstarter campaign. The campaign started well but sadly didn't meet target and that's when YOO posted a modified version of the video which notched up 250,000 views in the first 24 hours and has moved on to almost 1 million. You can see it at: www.facebook.com/yooDesignStudio/videos/10154087720116044/
Let me know what you think...
This Week's News
Two firms that make furniture parts have agreed to pay fines totalling £2.8 million for illegal cartel activity, after a Competition and Markets Authority investigation.
The companies, which supply drawer parts to well-known furniture manufacturers such as Silentnight, have admitted that they broke competition law by agreeing not to compete on price and sharing out which customers they would supply - reducing customer choice and giving the appearance of competition where there was none.
Award-winning bathroom distributor, Frontline Bathrooms, is launching a new customer reward scheme for 2017 called Aquaescapes, which offers customers the opportunity of a once-in-a-lifetime, 5-star, all-inclusive luxury holiday in St Lucia.
Both new and existing customers can register their interest to take part in the scheme from 1st - 28th February. At the end of the registration period qualifying participants will be informed and they will be given specific targets to achieve in order to step closer to this dream getaway.
For a towel rail that's sure to make an impact, look no further than bathroom furniture specialist Bauhaus's Gallery collection. Blending both contemporary and traditional radiator designs with the latest in thermal bathroom technology, the exclusive range is guaranteed to add a stunning design feature to any bathroom, en-suite or cloakroom whilst offering the ultimate in premium functionality.
Meticulously crafted in high-grade steel, the collection boasts the best in production standards as the fitted connections and wall fixings guarantee an effortless installation process.
The British Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom & Bathroom Installation (BiKBBI) has this week announced its latest strategic partnership with Age UK Trading CIC (Community Interest Company). Age UK Trading CIC is a trading subsidiary of Age UK, the UK's largest charity working with older people.
The partnership will see BiKBBI assisting Age UK Trading CIC and its mission to support the country's older population to make the most out of later life, specifically within the bathroom environment.
The £20,000 Stoves Community Kitchens campaign aims to place the kitchen at the heart of local communities, helping to transform the kitchen facilities of community groups and charities. The latest round saw almost 200 nominations from across the country, with more than 2,500 votes being cast in the public Facebook vote.
Gorenje, has introduced a new sunrise finish to its hugely successful Retro collection of fridge freezers. Available on Orb freestanding, single-door models, the new Sunrise Retro fridge will add vibrant splashes of colour to any kitchen.
Boasting the highest achievable energy-efficiency rating (A+++), the fridge has a gross capacity of 260 litres and includes IonAir and DynamiCooling food preservation technology.
Wilsonart UK in County Durham has announced the winners of its nationwide laminate work surface competition during 2016. Designers and retailers were invited to submit designs that utilised the company's new ultra-thin, solid core Zenith laminate introduced earlier in the year.
Ruby Kiernan, marketing executive for Wilsonart UK explains: "We wanted to highlight the amazing uses for Zenith - it's much more than a straightforward laminate. Retailers and installers can work with it on site to create upstands, water fall end panels, open shelves, pet boxes, tray spaces, all kinds of things.
Tyseley-based kitchen, bathroom and bedroom manufacturer Mereway Group is looking to grow its Trend Interiors brand in 2017, increasing turnover by 50% and taking market share from the builder and self-build sectors.
"We have ambitious plans for growth," says sales & marketing director Graham Jones. "There is a gap in the market for a quality product and service that is affordable and easy for customers to buy via their builders and installation professionals.
Founded by Max Spenser-Morris in 2003, Design Republic is one of the leading kitchen & bathroom design specialists in the UK. The showroom, on Risby Business Park, is now home to a stunning array of displays, providing inspiration at every turn, with an experienced design team on hand to turn kitchen and bathroom dreams into reality.
This is the first time Smeg's collections have been separated out across different brochures, detailing the company's vast portfolio which includes over 950 products across 12 categories.
Shower enclosure specialist, Lakes Bathrooms, recently celebrated a major milestone; its 30th anniversary. This was made all the more significant by the death, very soon after, of co-founder, Robin Craddock, who raised a very proud smile for the achievement and insisted that celebrations should go on for the team of loyal staff that, with him, had built the business.
Today, Lakes Bathrooms enjoys significant success, with an annual turnover of £16million, a 100,000sq.ft headquarters and an additional 70,000sq.ft warehouse, a wholly-owned manufacturing subsidiary in China, over 40,000 products and product variants, and a talented staff of 77 in the UK, plus 73 in China.
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According to a new report commissioned by Amicus Commercial Finance, well over half (61%) of invoices issued by UK small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) remain unpaid within the debtor day period. Of these, almost three-quarters (70%) of firms say they rely on getting paid during their debtor day period to avoid facing a shortage of working capital.