KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
15th June 2012


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Please note that you are viewing an archived issue of The KBzine.

International News

New brand launch: Live Life The Mereway

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A coffee is just a coffee, right?

An instant coffee is just that, instantly made and instantly forgotten, but a coffee that has had time, passion and effort lavished on it is a coffee to be savoured, enjoyed and never forgotten.

This is the philosophy behind the new Mereway Kitchens brand. There are kitchens and then there are Mereway kitchens. An ethos captured in the new strapline 'Live Life The Mereway'.

New fridge-freezers: fresher colours, fresher ingredients

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Glossy red, chocolate brown, lime green and ebony black stainless steel fridge freezers from Electrolux are designed to give any kitchen a lift. While the others are painted, the ebony black model gets its colour from a clever finishing process, which facilitates a true colour stainless steel.

Zesty Zurich for fabulous drinking water

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Franke has updated its Pro-Value portfolio with the innovative new two lever FilterFlow Zurich model, for filtered water at an affordable premium.

EQ launches new 2D Planner for eStore

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KBB business management systems and eCommerce solutions provider EQ Software, introduces MyRoomPlan - an exciting brand new 2D Planning Tool. This product will enhance EQ's already successful eStore product and is available exclusively as an additional sales & marketing element for furniture and bathrooms.

Concealed dual flow heads come in two styles

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Cifial's new Dual Flow Concealed Heads come in a square or rectangular option. These spectacular shower heads have two water inlets, one to feed the waterfall function, the other for the rain spray. This enables the user to have the choice of just the waterfall, or the rain spray, or for a more vigorous shower have both options on at the same time.

EU Policymakers weigh options for water pricing

Putting a price on water is essential to encourage savings but EU policymakers are cautious not to spark a social backlash with a one-size-fits-all solution. "Pay more if you use more" is, however, a model which could work, the MEP in charge of water issues told EurActiv.

Urban Life from Hafele

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Offering the latest fresh and striking handle designs, the Urban collection from Hafele includes a series of knobs, bar, inset and D handles formed from such materials as wood, wood and metal combinations, plastic, leather and acrylic.

This variety of contemporary designs incorporates elements of soft curves and straight lines bringing natural and man-made materials into the home.

Hafele's new Kato handle range is fast and easy to fit

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The new and exclusive collection of Kato profile handles launched by Hafele is an innovative under worktop handle for standard cabinet design that is easy to fix without the need for routing channels into the carcase.

Hettich opens the way to better sliding doors

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Practicality, performance and style meet in three ingenious and robust sliding door mechanisms now available from Hettich UK. Inline P, TopLine 22 and TopLine M offer special features for particular two/three-door applications, such as flush closing, 'silent' soft close and opening/sliding options on the same cabinet design, creating the option to upgrade to sliding doors as a retrofit.

A winning combination

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On The Level, the UK's manufacturer of concealed wet floor shower trays, has been working alongside Geberit to produce an innovative and complete wet room system.

Vado sponsors World Cycle Tour

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Vado is sponsoring Phil Saunders and Tom Nelson, aka Daring Dynamos, on a cycle ride around the world! The epic journey is in aid of War Child, which provides life-changing support to the most vulnerable children whose families, communities and schools have been torn apart by war.

Daring Dynamos are planning to visit some of Vado's international customers during the tour, which is expected to last approximately two years. 

Welcome to the


When we broadcast our last issue we'd rather lost track of time and had forgotten that the extended Diamond Jubilee celebrations were upon us! We don't know about your inbox, but ours take some wading through after just a Bank Holiday Monday, so we felt that after a two day break, possibly extended to the full week, you might just be rather too busy to give KBZine the attention it deserves - particularly if you'd taken part in a full four days' worth of partying as opposed to watching the pageantry from the comfort of your own home... 

Anyway, together with some major problems on the server, we decided it would be a good idea to hold the issue over until this week. Hope you were not too inconvenienced.



Jan Hobbs


This Week's News




KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002


We strongly recommend viewing KBzine full size in your web browser. Click our masthead above to visit our website version.


Construction growth continues to slow in May

Released last week, the Markit/CIPS UK Construction Purchasing Managers' Index revealed that construction growth continued to slow in May, with output growth hitting a three-month low. New business has risen at much slower pace and confidence in business outlook has dropped sharply since April

May data indicated that output increased again in the UK construction sector, but growth momentum slowed further from the near-two year high seen in March. This was highlighted by a fall in the seasonally adjusted Markit/CIPS Construction PMI from 55.8 in April to 54.4 in May.

Q1 figures reflect second highest mark in two years

The US National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA) has released the Kitchen & Bath Market Report for the first quarter. Results conveyed that showroom traffic, which is traditionally up and down from quarter to quarter, rose 8% in the first quarter of the year to 24 consumers visiting the average kitchen and bath showroom in March. While this remains 13% down from a year ago, Q1 of 2011 was a particularly standout quarter. This quarter's figure is the second-highest mark over the past two years.

Hafele introduces Jasper

* Jasper.jpgPictured here is the new Jasper pull handle; designed and manufactured in the UK and available exclusively from Hafele.

Part of the Modern Life collection, this luxurious handle has an understated elegance with its soft curves and flat lines. It is available in four different lengths with a polished nickel finish and has been designed to complement various types of furniture around the home including the kitchen, bathroom and bedroom.

For more information on handles or for the full range of Hafele products,

T: 01788 548811
W: www.hafele.co.uk

Curves in all the right places...

* Hanex.jpgHanex solid surfacing offers stand-out design flexibility for kitchens, nowhere better shown than this stunning 3m long elliptical island unit made entirely in S-008 N White. The bespoke unit was designed for a discerning kitchen client whose brief was to make a strong design statement, while combining true functionality.

Whirlpool introduces the new Gusto microwave oven

* Gusto.jpgWhirlpool has launched the new Gusto microwave oven featuring the company's renowned Crisp technology.

Whirlpool's new Gusto GT 285 BL microwave oven boasts the quality cooking performance expected from an oven at the greater speed of a microwave.

KitchenAid's new built-in coffee machine has automatic cappuccino function

* KitchenAid-coffee-machine.jpgKitchenAid, the premium manufacturer renowned for its appliances that offer professional performance and stylish design, has introduced a sleek built-in coffee machine with an automatic cappuccino function.

The KitchenAid KSCX 3625 built-in coffee machine is perfect for satisfying a consumer's craving for a smooth, strong coffee full of character and flavour, and allows consumers to create professional-style coffee in the comfort of their own home.

Amica launches 8kg machine in new washing range

Amica-8kg-washing-machine.jpgEuropean appliances brand Amica has launched a brand new range of washing machines to the UK and Ireland. Amica's 2012-product line-up now offers a choice of eight washing machines, each A+ rated for energy efficiency with a raft of highly saleable features and load capacities from 5kg to 8kg to suit any household.

Steel allows consumers to design colourful dream hob

* Steel Ascot A9-4T.jpgSteel, renowned throughout Europe for its quality and beautifully designed professional kitchen appliances, has launched a colourful built-in hob collection which allows consumers to design their dream cook-top.

Steel's Ascot hobs are perfect to complement the brand's collection of built-in ovens, and allow the consumer to configure their dream hob using the wide range of hob configurations available. Consumers can choose to mix and match between gas, wok-burners, induction, fry-top, deep-fryer, barbeque, ceramic or lava stone grill, allowing them to create an array of exciting meals using their ideal cooking method. 

All you need is Essential from Carron Phoenix

* Carron-Phoenix-Essentials.jpgCarron Phoenix has relaunched its popular Essential Collection and renamed it the Essential Value Sink & Tap Pack Range with an overhauled product profile and a clearly designed new eight page brochure. 

The KBzine Archive Search

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How to contact us at The KBzine:
Jan Hobbs
Publishing Editor
Tel: +44 (0)1372 811 307 
Mobile: 07980 288 373

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John Austen
Publishing Director
Tel: +44 (0)1580 755 863
Mobile: 07766 707 888
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Recent News

Bosch and Methven back UK Water Efficiency Awards 2012

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Domestic appliance manufacturer Bosch and global designer and manufacturer of premium showers and tapware, Methven UK, have joined forces to back the UK Water Efficiency Awards 2012.

British Ceramic Tile joins 'Great British' celebrations this Summer unveiling plans for change

This summer there's no better time to celebrate being the best of British and to commemorate this momentous occasion, British Ceramic Tile has announced a series of key changes as the company implements its ambitious plan to become a one-stop super shop for all tile, stone and glass products.

Total support for specifiers

Anyone needing to specify tiling can do so with complete confidence, thanks to the total support offered free by BAL. The popular name in professional tile adhesives and grouts, renowned for setting standards in tiler training, makes its expertise freely available to specifiers.

Figures show public sector house building still low, but private sector making progress

Figures released today by NHBC have shown public sector registrations to build new homes in the UK are still below last year's figures.

An opportunity for the industry to get involved with transforming neglected London dock into 'creative hub'?

Thames Water has donated 2.5 acres of property in a bid to help a new property-focused crowdfunding website raise thousands of pounds to transform a neglected London dock into a creative hub ahead of the Olympics.

Annual Bathroom Conference: booking now

Bookings are now being taken for the Annual Bathroom Conference, which is taking place on 9th October at Heythrop Park in Oxfordshire and is open to everyone in the KBB Industry.

The Bathroom Manufacturers Association's Yvonne Orgill tells us that places are filling up - so do book soon to make sure you don't miss on this popular event, which promises to be even better than last year

Dimplex launches online guide to green energy

We knew Dimplex was an expert in electric heating, but what we didn't know is that it is also a market leader in renewable energy solutions, with what the company says is the widest range of heat pumps available in the UK. Now the company is sharing its expertise with the launch of a handy new website to guide everyone through all the green heating and hot water options that are available.

Apollo continues to drive safety message home

As one of the UK's largest retailers of made-to-measure blinds and shutters, Apollo Blinds is at the forefront of the industry's efforts to raise awareness of dangers relating to looped blind cords and is launching a campaign to drive the message home.

Smart Systems' free online sales enquiry, quoting & ordering facility is seriously faster!

Due to the increasing uptake by retailers creating the need for larger storage facilities, KBBConnect, by Smart Systems, has now upgraded to a more advanced Cloud hosting service provider. In addition to significantly increasing individual storage capacity, add yet further layers of security and give even greater reliability, it can also provide Internet connection speeds up to 50 times faster.

Scotland welcomes KBSA at successful regional meeting

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The Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom Specialists Association has held a well-attended regional meeting in Scotland that was hosted by corporate member Carron Phoenix.


Andrew Bentley joins Ambiance Bain as UK National Sales Manager

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Andrew Bentley has joined Ambiance Bain as UK National Sales Manager, reporting to the Sales & Marketing Director, Nygel G. McCormac. He replaces Nicola Tomlinson, who will return in an alternative senior sales & marketing role next year, following her maternity leave.

ECF strengthens sales & marketing teams

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East Midlands based furniture components manufacturer and distributor ECF has strengthened its Sales & Marketing teams with key appointments both internally and externally. The appointments serve to further reinforce ECF as a nationwide supplier to the UK furniture industry and provide its customers with increased service levels.


Franke develops useful 'Trade Area' for retailers

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In response to feedback from retailers, Franke has developed a new 'Trade Area' on the company's website - specially designed for Franke trade customers.

Franke is the leading global manufacturer of sinks for domestic use and has a 100-year heritage so retailers can be assured that, in specifying a Franke sink, they will be giving customers the best quality, best design and the reassurance of a 50-year guarantee.

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