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KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
17th May 2013

 

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International News
Products

Ultra-low profile shower tray meets growing demand for 25mm profile shower trays

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With the growing popularity of wet-room and walk in showers there has been a rapidly increasing demand for a lower profile tray; to ensure these trends are met Simpsons has introduced an ultra-low 25mm shower tray range called Slab.
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Chinese developer seeks innovations for £20m flagship building in new £6bn eco-city

The Building Research Establishment is working with Franshion Properties (China), one of China's leading state owned developers, to give businesses an opportunity to showcase their most innovative and sustainable technologies in a new eco-city in China.
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Dare to imagine...

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One organisation counting down the days to kbbLDN is Karonia, provider of the Mistral range of solid surfacing. The company tells us it will be using the show, which starts in just nine days, to build on its presence at previous shows and further demonstrate the versatile nature of this 25mm enhanced acrylic material.
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Abode 'Debuts' striking new bathroom taps

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Another new Abode range makes its debut... The Debut range, created especially for the UK market, forms part of a new range of bathroom brassware products from Abode.
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Maytag introduces new 10Kg capacity washing machine

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Maytag has added a new 10kg capacity freestanding washing machine to its range.
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The new colours of Croydex

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Responding to the use of colour as a trend in the bathroom, Croydex has introduced two new shades to its already popular range of fashion colourway accessories, bringing the collection bang up to date for 2013.
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Eco-friendly comfort from ClearGreen

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Eco-friendly credentials and comfort-focused design combine in baths from ClearGreen. The range, another in the Bathroom Brands portfolio, includes contemporary freestanding designs, shower baths and single and double ended baths.
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The death of an industry: late payment is killing specialist contracting businesses

Barry Ashmore, construction industry veteran and founder of StreetwiseSubbie.com, was invited to an evidence session in Parliament this week to speak to a cross party group of MPs regarding the state of the construction industry owing to late payments and unfair payment terms.
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The Showering Collection by Glass has expanded

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At ISH 2013, Italian well-being producer Glass Idromassaggio launched three exciting new shower enclosures; Lula, Dado and Life, and expanded two of its best sellers, Fluida and Slinta 2.0, to increase its already extensive Showering collection.
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Bespoke bedrooms from established manufacturer

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The natural tones of this bespoke bedroom from Hartleys Bedrooms' Milan range, bring a simple fresh appeal.
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Storage solutions for modern bathrooms

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Storage has become a must in bathrooms and manufacturers are meeting the demand with functional and attractive products.
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Match 1950's-inspired retro pastel switched sockets and light switches to your decor!

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It's time to replace those grubby plain white plastic plug sockets and light switches with these stunning new metal retro styles made by Varilight!
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Welcome to the

KBzine

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT: OUR APOLOGIES TO EVERYONE WHO WAS EXPECTING TO RECEIVE THIS WEEK'S EDITION TODAY. UNFORTUNATELY EXTENSIVE TRAVELLING DELAYS PREVENTED OUR TIMELY RETURN FROM VERONA AND SO THERE WAS NO PROSPECT OF AN ISSUE BEING BROADCAST BEFORE 6PM. WE WILL THEREFORE  BROADCAST TODAY'S PLANNED ISSUE ON WEDNESDAY 29TH MAY, RESUMING NORMAL FRIDAY BROADCASTS THE WEEK AFTER. ALL AFFECTED ADVERTISERS WILL HAVE THEIR AD SERIES EXTENDED BY A FURTHER WEEK FREE OF CHARGE. THANK YOU FOR YOUR FORBEARANCE.

I can remember my mother being quite put out a few years back when I refused to shop at the new Homebase superstore that had ousted the local independent garden centre, so you can perhaps imagine that she would have become quite cross with me when the new Sainsbury's superstore opened up on the outskirts of town and I refused to take her there too.  I said she'd rue the day she supported such outlets; that they would put the smaller independents out of business, subsequently take away our choice and make life difficult for those that had to rely on public transport.

Before long our town centre Sainsbury's closed down (it had probably been planned that way from the beginning despite assurances that it would remain open) and we had to get used to the superstore as it was the only proper store within easy driving distance. Then someone decided it was too small, it was almost doubled in size and try as she might my mother can't shop there as she can't stay on her feet for the three-plus hours it takes to get around and locate what she needs. Most other shoppers look thoroughly tired and miserable too, they can be quite grumpy and the place certainly seems a lot emptier than it used to be.

And if I want to buy a nail or cuphook of a particular size I can no longer visit the local hardware shop as it's not there anymore; I have to go to Homebase and buy a packet - most of the contents of which will be wasted. But at least I have a car and can get there; many others don't and the buses don't stop nearby either.

Talk to the independent kitchen, bathroom and bedroom retailers and they'll tell you business is suffering because consumers feel more comfortable visiting the big DIY stores to choose their new wares and that one of the reasons for this is that they feel they'll need to spend less. That's not always the case though, is it? But how do we let them know that?

Two companies I've spoken with this week are tackling the problem head on with a view to enticing consumers back into the smaller, independent shops. You can read all about their initiatives - one aimed at the bathroom market and the other at kitchens, below.

Another - independent retailer Heart of the Home - is taking its business to the consumers in the form of a small lorry kitted out with some fabulous cabinetry, which I've seen at my local market a couple of times on a Saturday... I'll be talking to the company soon to see whether this exercise is proving worthwhile.

I don't know who said, "Use them or lose them" but I couldn't agree more...

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Yours,

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Jan Hobbs

 


This Week's News

Massive marketing programme "Will bring business to retailers" says Roger Cooper

* The-Bathroom-Sale-Catalogue.jpgWhy are consumers staying away from bathroom showrooms in favour of the Internet, the chains and DIY multiples? According to Roger Cooper, director at UK Bathroom Brands, one of the main reasons is that the big names are not doing enough to drive customers into showrooms.
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Franke releases next update of its popular 'Franke Experience' App for iPads

* Franke-App-for-iPad.jpgFranke has updated its popular 'Franke Experience' App for iPad users as part of its major 2013 product update which boasts a range of new products. The App was first released in early 2012 and is a tool for retailers and consumers, enabling them to browse the full Franke portfolio of products in sinks, taps, hoods and waste management products.
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Dave Button to head sales direction for Crosswater

* Dave-Button.jpgDave Button has joined the Board of Crosswater Holdings as Sales Director. Dave, who was with Ideal Standard for 25 years until 2011, joins Crosswater at an exciting time for the company. In his new position, he will take responsibility for the company's retail team and also spearhead the overall market development of Crosswater's value brand, Adora.
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Romex launches new module to manage risk to drivers

According to the Health & Safety Executive's 'Driving at Work' publication, the biggest cause of occupational fatality is driving on business. There are more than 20 people killed and a further 250 seriously injured every week.
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Geberit continues to make a splash to support retail partners

* Geberit-Sela.jpgRenowned innovator in sanitary technology, Geberit, is supporting the launch of its new shower toilet, Geberit AquaClean Sela, with a heavyweight consumer marketing campaign throughout 2013.
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Gorenje once again named Slovenia's most trusted brand

Gorenje has received The Reader's Digest Trusted Brand award in the category of home appliances in Slovenia for the seventh year in a row.
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Vertix by Vado

* Vertix.jpgVado's recently introduced Vertix collection includes stylish vertical thermostatic shower valves specifically designed to give a sleeker profile than equivalent horizontal exposed shower valves. A compact, easy to fit shower valve, its distinctive vertical fitting creates a streamlined, minimalist effect on the wall.
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PWS champions the independents

* PWS-Second-Nature.jpgHot on the heels of its highly successful real kitchens' project, PWS has launched a duo of web-based tools to champion its independent Second Nature retailers.
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Steel introduces new gas hob collection

* Steel-Genesi.jpgGas hobs add drama and flair to cooking, which is ideal for when entertaining at home, and is the fuel of choice for the hobby chef. Steel's new Genesi collection of built-in gas hobs is available in three sizes to suit a range of kitchen styles, with both four and five burner models on offer.
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Dimplex launches compact corner towel rail

* Dimplex-Compact-Corner-towel-rail.jpgDimplex has introduced a new electric Compact Corner towel rail, perfect for utilising the corner space in a bathroom or wet room. The CPTC Compact Corner towel rail can be mounted at any height to suit other fittings and adds a touch of luxury to any bathroom.

Finished in high quality chrome, it not only rapidly dries and warms towels, but it is also an excellent storage solution as towels can be neatly folded and placed in the individual sections.
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Carron Phoenix launches brand new brochures for 2013

* Carron-Elite_Essential.jpgFor its 2013 product update, Carron Phoenix has revamped its brochure format. In place of one single brochure, now there are two which segment the company's product offer into the Essential and Elite ranges.
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Holloways of Ludlow cabinet makers promote Emma Jordan to Project Manager role

* EMMA-JORDAN.jpgAward-winning kitchen and furniture designer, Holloways of Ludlow, have announced that Emma Jordan has been promoted to Project Manager for the company's bespoke cabinet making business.
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Electrolux Hosts 2013 Cannes Film Festival Opening Gala Dinner

* Electrolux-chef.jpgThe Cannes Film Festival opening gala dinner was held within the Electrolux Agora Pavilion for the third consecutive year. Guests, including Leonardo DiCaprio and Nicole Kidman were treated to a five course meal all cooked on Electrolux professional appliances.
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Kick back and cool down with the new InSinkErator under-sink chiller

* under-sink-chiller.jpgInSinkErator presents the perfect companion to its steaming hot water taps; a compact Under-Sink Chiller that provides perfectly chilled and filtered water at the touch of a lever.
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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.

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

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John Austen
Publishing Director
Email:publisher@thekbzine.com
Tel: +44 (0)1580 755 863
Mobile: 07766 707 888
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Recent News

New study shows that more night-time deliveries work better

A package of measures put in place by the logistics sector for the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympic Games that includes more night-time deliveries could, if adopted permanently, improve some of our traffic issues and bring environmental benefits too, while helping to make roads safer for cyclists and other vulnerable users.
more



Health & Safety experts make recommendations for ISO14001 revision

Leading experts in Environment from EEF, the manufacturers' organisation, and manufacturing companies across the UK met this week to make key recommendations to the revision of guidance to ISO14001, the widely used standard for Environmental Management Systems that customers use to differentiate between suppliers.
more


Geberit reaches new heights in the loo with the best view over London!

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Visitors caught short 750ft above London as they take in the views from the top of The Shard, the Capital's newest tourist attraction, will enjoy quality scenery inside and out when they visit the washrooms, as they feature Geberit's Sigma50 flush plate.
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EEF and ENER-G launch hunt for Britain's greenest manufacturers

The hunt is on once again for Britain's most efficient and sustainable manufacturers. EEF, the manufacturers' organisation, and ENER-G have launched the Environment award category as part of the fifth annual Future Manufacturing Awards with companies eligible to win two prestigious awards at regional and national level.
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Support Independent Retailer month 2013

July sees the beginning once more of Independent Retailer Month - a campaign that has been supported since its launch by The Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom Specialists Association.
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Ellis Furniture holds design competition in conjunction with William Wilson

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Popular manufacturer and designer Ellis Furniture recently teamed up with long-standing customer and one of Scotland's largest suppliers of plumbing & heating products, William Wilson, to run a bathroom design competition using Virtual Worlds design software.
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Van users: life is going to get tougher

Van users have been reminded by The Fuelcard People of ever-tighter emissions controls. Steve Clarke, group marketing manager, said: "Life is already tough for anyone running vans or other LCVs, but those who fail to address emissions reduction will find it getting harder. As restrictions spread, the worst polluters will soon find themselves running out of road.
more


Electrolux hosts CookIt! competition for children in its fully kitted HO training kitchens

Electrolux says it is delighted to be hosting the fabulous CookIt! competition for children in its fully kitted training kitchens at the company's Luton Head Office.
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HRH The Prince Charles, Duke of Rothesay, opens new Belling hospitality training centre

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HRH The Prince Charles, Duke of Rothesay, officially opened the Belling Hospitality Training Centre at Dumfries House Estate, with guests including the award-winning Edinburgh-based chef and restaurateur Tony Singh and Belling ambassador, Brian Turner.
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People

FIRA appoints new Furniture Technician Supervisor

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A new Supervisor has been appointed for FIRA Service Technicians, the renowned furniture care and repair specialist.
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Personnel changes designed to expand Kitchens International

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Independent luxury kitchen retailer Kitchens International has appointed a new Showroom Manager for its Westfield Rd studio in Edinburgh.
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Literature

New brochures from Franke offer definitive guide to choosing sinks, taps and accessories

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Timed with the April launch of several new products, Franke has unveiled a brand new design and format for its brochures for the Specialist and Pro-Value ranges aimed at guiding and inspiring consumers on their decision-making journey. The brochures are currently being circulated via Franke's distributors to retailers who will find them an effective selling tool with consumers.
more



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