KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
11th October 2013


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

International News

Distinctly affordable kitchen taps from Abode

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The Abode design team creates taps for people who have come to expect the perfect blend of design, performance and sheer quality. Earlier this year Abode launched four brand new great value, designer kitchen taps, all offered in popular chrome and brushed nickel finishes and now widely available. They are:

Latest release of Building Regulations now cites Eurocodes design standards

The October 2013 release of Approved Document A of the Building Regulations now includes reference to the Eurocodes. The old British Standards are no longer being maintained and will become increasingly out of date, so engineers need to be using the new Eurocodes.

Matrix Kitchens announces installation of two stunning new displays

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Matrix Kitchens of Knightsbridge has installed two stunning new kitchen displays. The displays reflect Matrix's design expertise and flexibility, showcasing both a highly contemporary range and the company's latest, more classic, Thurloe bespoke kitchen.

Aria bath - for opulent relaxation

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Encompassing a complete bathroom portfolio including sanitaryware, baths, bath and shower screens, towel warmers and accessories, Ben de Lisi's organically-designed collection features a range of furniture that perfectly complements the elegant, understated look.

New Eurostream on tap from PJH

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PJH Group has unveiled a comprehensive brassware range under a new own-brand, Eurostream, exclusive to PJH and designed to complement its large choice of bathroom ceramics, baths and showers as featured in the new Bathrooms To Love Collection.

New multi-outlet recessed shower valves from Crosswater

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Valves that can control more than one water outlet in the bathroom are a growing trend in UK bathrooms and allow hand and overhead showers and sometimes even a bath filler too, to be operated from just one fitting. Crosswater has developed innovative new products to meet the call for high-style, thermostatically controlled multi-outlet, easy to install fittings.

Häfele launches exclusive Studio Partner programme

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Design solutions specialist Häfele UK has launched a brand new Studio Partner scheme, offering exclusive products, extensive marketing and showroom display, and customer lead generation to hand-picked independent kitchen studios across the UK.

New Whirlpool fridge freezer is super cool!

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Whirlpool tells us it is determined to stay ahead of the game with its new refrigeration range including the new WBE 3325 NF TS. The extensive range of Whirlpool refrigeration appliances offers a wealth of choice across all areas of the cooling market at different price points to suit the budget available.

Welcome to the


New research released from the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development, reveals that 36% of line managers have not received any training for their role and that time for effective line management is too often squeezed or lost in favour of more immediate task-orientated priorities. And with 24% of managers facing situations where they often have to put the interests of their organisation above the interests of their team members, important relationships - which could otherwise drive high performance working - are damaged.

The survey, ‘Real-life leaders: closing the knowledge-doing gap’ reveals that efforts to foster positive manager behaviours are being undermined by the lack of a consistent message of what organisations expect of managers. The research also found that 48% of companies promoted individuals into managerial roles based on their performance record rather than people management or leadership skills and that 28% have not taken any action when they have received poor feedback on line managers!

“We hear organisations lament the lack and quality of leaders, but we aren’t seeing evidence of their commitment to drive good leadership and management practices,” reports Ksenia Zheltoukhova, Research Associate at CIPD. “Businesses address issues such as poor customer service or faulty machinery straightaway, whereas bad management across organisations is tolerated to a shocking degree.”

My first thought on reading the report was that if more attention were to be paid to training line managers in the first place, a lot less time and money would need to be spent on staffing and training customer service departments. Imagine the goodwill consumers would feel if an operation ran so slickly (because everyone knew what they were supposed to be doing and when) that they were able to quickly speak to a human when calling the organisation, rather than having to go through one of those exasperating menus and being subjected to lengthy waits while listening to music on a loop!

It all seems so simple to me…





Jan Hobbs


This Week's News

'BIM' impact on contract and kitchen furniture sectors to be explained at industry event

* Phil-Reynolds-FIRA.jpgA Government backed construction industry initiative, set to impact on the contract furniture sector, will be explained at a furniture industry event next month.

Sheer style and Elegance from Abacus Direct

* Abacus-Elegance.jpgThe Elegance range is a collection of towel warmers and radiators that offers something for every bathroom design. With traditional models alongside Ben de Lisi's designer range, there is a choice of finishes, sizes and designs.

Available from specialist manufacturer and distributor of bathroom products Abacus Direct, there is also a wide range of accessories to complement these chic and stylish designs.

Zapper launches Scan-to-Pay to help SMEs who suffer from late payments

* Zapper.jpgZapper's new Scan-to-Pay service help reconcile the £36.4bn currently owed to six out of 10 UK SMEs in late payments. The service makes invoice payments as quick and easy as taking a photograph.

Bushboard ups the design ante with the relaunch its Nuance bathroom surfaces

* Bushboard-Nuance-Dolce-Vita.jpgBushboard is relaunching in early November its Nuance range of bathroom surfacing, which offers waterproof panels, worksurfaces and upstands in laminate and solid surfacing.

New Whirlpool fridge freezer prolongs life of fruit and vegetables

WBE-3321-Whirlpool.jpgFood waste has become a very serious issue in recent times. Far too much good food is consigned to the rubbish bin through laziness or because our cooling appliances are not sufficiently equipped to keep fresh food in pristine condition.

Minimum projection, maximum storage opportunities with new Debba furniture range

* Debba-furniture.jpgWith storage solutions being key to achieving a streamlined, relaxing ambience in the bathroom, Roca has extended its popular Debba collection to include a comprehensive range of furniture options.

Trustmark welcomes tougher sentencing for rogue traders

* Trustmark.jpgProposals on tougher sentencing for rogue traders who defraud and bribe the public have been welcomed by TrustMark, the Government endorsed quality mark for reputable tradesmen.

The new Studio sink from Franke gets crafty with corners

* Franke-Studio-STX-ss-sink.jpgFranke has introduced the new Studio STX 621-E corner sink in Silk finish Stainless Steel, designed to maximise the use of the often wasted corner area in kitchens.The ergonomic design centres on two bowls and a drainer at right angles, which can be dropped into a corner area making every inch of your kitchen work that bit harder and is especially ideal for compact kitchens.

Major milestone reached by BMA

* Jika-childrens-bathroom.jpgDuring a surprise interlude at this week's Bathroom Business Conference, Nina Hossain, broadcaster and journalist and host for the event, announced to the 180 plus attendees that the award winning Bathroom Manfacturers Association had reached a major milestone in its long and well-respected history. The 100th member brand had been signed up that very morning.

Gorenje lanches new HomeChef oven with benefit of pyrolitic cleaning

* HomeCHEF_Display.jpgGorenje has added a further benefit to its HomeChef oven to include pyrolitic cleaning, making the chore of cleaning the oven a breeze.

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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News in Brief

Vado joins the World's Biggest Coffee Morning! Staff at brassware manufacturer Vado took part in The World's Biggest Coffee Morning recently, raising £90 in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support from the sale of homemade cakes. Vado has actively supported Macmillan over the years, from running marathons to eating cakes and has managed to raise over £8000 in total for the charity. T: +44 (0) 1934 744466

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

Housing construction activity increases at fastest pace for almost a decade

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Construction companies ended the third quarter of 2013 with a strong expansion of overall output levels and a further improvement in their new order books. This boosted employment numbers in the sector for the fourth consecutive month and the rate of job creation reached its fastest for just under six years.

Better Bathrooms announces competition to support Breast Cancer Awareness Month 2013

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This October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and this year Better Bathrooms has teamed up with Breast Cancer Care to help raise money for this important campaign.

New website and extra manufacturing capacity for Brayer Design

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Brayer Design has completely redesigned its website (www.billbrayerdesign.co.uk) and expanded its manufacturing capacity.

Independent Made In Britain Committee launches as 1,000th company joins campaign

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A new, independent Made In Britain Committee has been created following the success of the Made In Britain campaign which was launched in 2011 by British cooker manufacturer Stoves and has now added its 1,000th business.

Property maintenance chief urges us to plan ahead for non-emergency refurbishments

While tracking the number of shopping days until Christmas, people also should track the number of remodelling days until the relatives arrive, says the managing director of one of the UK's largest property management firms.

KBSA Supplier Awards over for another year

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The Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom Specialists Association presented its annual supplier awards at the recent 2013 KBBR Kitchen Conference. The awards recognise excellence in those companies that supply products to KBSA retailers and are the only awards of their kind which represent the views of retailers and not a panel of judges.

Uform celebrates 20 years in business

At a recent celebration, held for its entire workforce at company headquarters in Toomebridge, Uform celebrated 20 amazing years in business.


The Bathroom Sale unveils stunning armoury for independents

Applications for the UK Bathroom Brand's Bathroom Sale closed on 31st August 2013. Over 750 retailers have signed up for what promises to be the biggest sale push in UK bathroom history!

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