KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-news - since 2002
28th March 2013
We strongly recommend viewing KBzine full size in your web browser. Click our masthead above to visit our website version.
Please note that you are viewing an archived issue of The KBzine.
The Whirlpool Corporation has been recognised as one of Fortune Magazine's World's Most Admired Companies in the Home Equipment, Furnishings industry sector. The company finished first in this sector for the third year in a row.
Half of humans lack safe drinking water, while competition for water from agriculture and industry could put more people at risk in years to come, says a Portuguese lawyer who is the United Nations' independent advocate for the right to water. Catarina de Albuquerque, speaking ahead of World Water Day earlier today, said the official UN figure - 800 million - doesn't provide a full picture of water poverty, estimating that some 3.5 billion people lack a safe supply.
Plastic has become an unavoidable material in our modern world. Plastics are versatile and durable, but this durability can make disposal problematic. A Green Paper published yesterday by the European Commission aims to launch a structured discussion about how to make plastic products more sustainable throughout their life cycle and reduce the impact of plastic waste on the environment.
If you're wondering why KBzine has landed in your inbox today, it's because tomorrow is Good Friday and with any luck you won't be at your desk, so we thought we'd send it a day early.
It's hard to believe that Spring officially started last week, with the weather the way it is - and far from causing us to jump out of our beds on Sunday morning, full of the joys of the new season, the clocks going back on Saturday/Sunday will this year see the lucky ones amongst us pull the duvets more tightly around our necks and try to get some more sleep!
Over the long Easter weekend, we traditionally undertake DIY tasks and get to grips with overgrown gardens. Despite not having seen any snow to speak of this year, my garden in Epsom will be a 'no go' area because it's so darned cold outside. I think the same can be safely said for just about everywhere in the UK so that leaves DIY.
I know sales have suffered for everyone in recent years and we could all do with a boost. Generally a bit of warmth and sunshine creates a ‘feelgood factor’ which makes people want to go out and spend money. In the absence of any warmth and sunshine, let’s hope that the prolonged Winter we’ve had to endure will have forced householders to contemplate their tired old kitchens, appliances, bathrooms and bedrooms and decide that it’s time for an update.
I’ll keep my fingers crossed that you manage to fill your order books over the weekend…
This Week's News
First time buyers and pensioners looking to downsize will be able to benefit from a radically new proposal that allows local people to buy their own plot of land and design their own custom built home.
A new report by Policy Exchange says that councils which fail to hit their own housing targets should have to release land to local people who want to design their own homes. In 2012, construction began on just 100,000 homes.
On Monday evening 25 March 2013 at the kbbreview Awards in London, Yvonne collected the Special Achievement Award. This award is given to those individuals who have made an 'outstanding contribution to the kitchen & bathroom industry'. The award specifically mentioned the development of the Water Label, a scheme that is now being rolled out across 27 European countries.
Responding to the announcement in the Chancellor's 2013 budget that the ceramic and steel industries will be exempt from the climate change levy from 2014, Chief Executive Tony Taylor from British Ceramic Tile said:
"We warmly welcome the budget announcement made last week-this is fantastic news for the ceramic industry here in the UK. British-based manufacturers have been faced with continuously rising energy costs in what is an extremely tough economic climate. This exemption has been used in many other EU member states and in effect this moves the UK to a zero % rate for Climate Change Levy in exchange for companies continuing to meet their challenging Climate Change Agreement targets.
Premium kitchen appliance specialist Britannia Living is delighted to announce the launch of its all-new range cooker collection. With four new families - Delphi, Fleet, Q Line and Wyre - the collection boasts the premium quality customers have come to expect from the Britannia brand; combined with subtle styling updates and improved features. The result is an enhanced range designed to delight the senses and help consumers discover the true pleasure in cooking.
A new construction industry report has been published by the Environment Agency in partnership with the British Safety Industry Federation on construction spills, guidance on how to prevent spills and who should take responsibility - the contractor or developer. It is available today by registering on the BSIF website here
Midas is one of the brand new sink ranges launched by Franke this month. Offering top-notch style and affordability, the Midas range forms part of Franke's Pro-Value collection and expands its offering of sinks with the Slim-Top low profile edge - sitting just the 1.8mm thickness of the stainless steel on the worksurface and thus achieving an almost flushmounted look.
LDL Components, the sole UK agent and distributor for Peka, now offers the brand new Peka Basik range from the Swiss manufacturer of high quality wirework storage solutions.
National fitted kitchen, bedroom and home office retailer Betta Living has bolstered its product portfolio with the introduction of bathrooms to its range.
A South London businessman and his company have been prosecuted for safety breaches after a worker narrowly escaped being crushed by a collapsing load of stone slabs. The two-tonne set of 10 slabs fell from the side of a lorry as workmen were trying to unload them at a workshop owned by Granite Express in Beddington Lane, Croydon, last year.
As anyone who frequently stays in hotels knows only too well, working out how the bath shower diverter works can be a real problem. Is it that button in the middle that pulls up? Do you twist the end of the spout? The permutations are endless. Wisp from Crosswater is a genius solution that really couldn't be simpler to operate. Designed for use on any no-tap-hole bath with a minimum rim of 80mm, the diverter can be used to control two outlets for example bath filler and an overhead fixed or hand shower by a simple lever flick.
Vado's new Enigma collection comprises three shower slide rail kits, two mini shower kits and a fixed head shower. The collection seamlessly blends white and chrome surfaces to create a stunning addition to bathroom environments.
Following the successful trial of its Premium Partner scheme, Burbidge, the UK kitchen frontals and accessories manufacturer, is now set to launch the programme to the marketplace.
The trial scheme has been operating throughout the UK via a small number of retailers and as a result of its continuing success, Burbidge now plans to roll out the programme across its entire network of retailers.
The KBzine Archive Search
We keep an extensive archive of news stories and product information that have featured in past issues of The KBzine. If you would like to run a search of the The KBzine web site using the search tool below please just go ahead by entering in the name of the person, product or company or any other key words that you are looking for.
How to contact us at The KBzine:
REQUEST THE KBZINE HERE
The KBzine is broadcast
every Friday. You may receive it FREE each week by
clicking the link above.
Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom Specialists Association CEO Graham Ball has welcomed this week’s budget as one that will help KBB retailers and encourage small businesses to invest.
Atlanta bathrooms is launching Trade Space; a free and innovative new service which connects the installer with the homeowner.
Springtime is the traditional season for home improvements, but if the seasonal urge to tend to our nests is not enough, two thirds of British first-time homeowners admit to be further motivated by the secret embarrassment at the state of their home when friends and family pop over to visit.
The first ever National Self Build Week will take place in early May 2013 with a wide-ranging programme of events planned to help millions of Britons turn their self build dreams into a reality.
Aquadi by Symphony is continuing to lead the way in the bathroom furniture market, by becoming the first bathroom furniture supplier to be awarded the FIRA Gold Product Certification.
Research undertaken by leading retail property trade body - the British Council of Shopping Centres, in partnership with Geofutures, shows that retail space in UK town centres is declining almost 20% faster than retail space outside town centres. A pilot undertaken in the South West has shown that town centre retail space contracted by 12% between 2005 and 2010. Over the same period the quantum of retail space outside town centres increased by almost 6%.