KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
5th January 2018


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

International News

Abode introduces Serenitie bathroom taps in rose gold

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The Abode ranges of bathroom brassware and showers are created with a perfect blend of design, performance, functionality and quality. A new 'on trend' finish has been added to the Serenitie range - Rose Gold - which is right up-to-date with the predicted colour trends for 2018 and is available now through Abode's distribution partners.

Rearo launches new range targeting the bathroom makeover market

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A family-owned Scottish manufacturer has launched a new range of shower wall panels to target the growing demand for a design-led, 'straight over tiles' solution to upgrade bathrooms.

Glasgow-based Rearo believes the new range will accelerate demand for luxury shower panels which do away with the need to replace tiles.

Selco Builders Warehouse now offers comprehensive Wilsonart laminate worktop collection

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Wilsonart UK has launched a new range of versatile laminate worktops into Selco Builders Warehouse. The new range includes a collection of 27 decors in a choice of square edge and post formed profiles. There are nine different textures in a mix of stone, contemporary timbers, and sparkle designs.

New Product Guide from MHS showcases the latest in radiator design

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MHS Radiators has unveiled its new retail Product Guide for 2017/18, featuring a superb range of Designer, Multi Column, Aluminium and Cast Iron radiators, as well as a stunning selection of towel rails and valves.

Luxury island living with Mark Taylor Design

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British manufacturer Mark Taylor Design is renowned for its superlative bespoke furniture and joinery and for its creative use of materials, which is exemplified by this simply stunning, unique copper and blue kitchen.

New, exclusive brand and range of small domestic appliances for Euronics agents

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Electrical buying group Combined Independents (Holdings), part of Euronics, has launched an exclusive new brand and range of small domestic appliances. The Linsar range includes a colourful and stylish collection of kettles and matching toasters, available exclusively to Euronics agents.

Welcome to the


A friend of the family who manufactures and fits anything from high-end furniture for expensive apartments in the smart parts of London, to reception desks and other bespoke furniture and fittings for even smarter hotels and designer stores globally, had a perfect start to 2018... He's being trained up to operate the company's CAD equipment.

As well as the lure of 'moving up to the offices' (as if his skills on the shop floor aren't quite as valuable as office work) he's excited because this means he's going to be the only one in the organisation who's able to both design and manufacture the company's wares.

Now I don't know much about CAD systems and perhaps they've moved on a lot since I was shown how they operate at a manufacturer's press launch almost two decades ago, but wouldn't an operator require at least the carpentry and joinery basics before being let loose on designing something that may end up costing the client some tens of thousands of pounds? Just imagine the problems if they made something, shipped it overseas and then found that it didn't quite fit, or perhaps that there wasn't room to open the doors on the units?

It's long been said that the best managers will have worked their way up from the very bottom of an organisation, since they have a greater understanding of what's required of everyone's roles. When it comes to the manufacture of intricate furniture and fittings that have to be able to function as well as fit, I'd have thought that starting at the bottom would have been a prerequisite.

I'll wait to be corrected... and in the meantime, may I wish you a happy, safe and prosperous 2018? With KBB Birmingham and the awe-inspiring Ecobuild looming, we have quite an exciting time ahead of us, don't we?



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Jan Hobbs



This Week's News

A positive message from the BiKBBI

* Damian-Walters.jpgThe British Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom & Bathroom Installation ended 2017 on a high note and its chief executive Damian Walters is equally positive about the Institute's prospects in 2018.

Roca creates new forms with Modo

* Roca_Modo6.jpgRoca places a huge importance on innovation, design and style and its new Modo collection is the epitome of all three. Modo's unique quality is that it can be moulded and sculptured into bespoke and individual pieces ready to suit all interior decors.

The collection has been created using Roca's new and exclusive material Surfex - a breakthrough in manufacturing technique and an unprecedented evolution in bathroom design. Surfex is a malleable solid surface material formulated from a combination of minerals and resins, allowing for the creation of shapes that were unthinkable until now.

New CIH and KBBG partnership will offer benefits to all

* CIH-and-KBBG-partner.jpgElectrical buying group Combined Independents (Holdings) and The Kitchen Bathroom Buying Group - part of Europe's leading kitchen and bathroom buying group, have signed a partnership that will increase trading opportunities for members of both organisations.

The partnership will provide CIH members with a comprehensive kitchen sales package, including access to tremendous buying advantages from a variety of kitchen suppliers from around the UK and Europe, enabling them to offer a 'one-stop-shop' to customers originally thinking of purchasing appliances. The deal will also enable KBBG members to increase sales, by selling kitchens to CIH members when they might not have previously done so.

Belling releases first 50cm induction cooker

* Belling-50cm-above.jpgBritish appliance manufacturer Belling has launched its first 50cm induction cooker, the FS50DOTi, the only appliance of its kind on the market.

The new freestanding appliance includes an electric double oven with induction hob and programmable timers, in a space-efficient frame that's perfect for keen cooks with modest kitchen spaces.

Tactile and luxurious, Fenix NTA is the new 'wonder metal' material

* wonder-metal.jpgWith the current trend for material mix, everyone knows that adding a touch of metal to an interior project will elevate it instantly, but that cost, fabrication and performance can be drawbacks.

Step forward the new 'wonder metal', Fenix NTA, a unique material in its field and the result of three years' research and development.

Build quality essential to bathroom success

* Abacus-build-quality.jpgThe bathroom is one of the most hardworking areas in any property and, for it to be trouble free, the quality of the 'build' is just as important as the aesthetic features that immediately catch the eye. The Elements range from Abacus is designed with this in mind and ensures tried and tested wetroom solutions that are versatile and easily fitted, yet provide long term performance.

While Abacus offers a comprehensive range of bathroom products, including sanitaryware, brassware and furniture, Elements enables the bathroom designer and installer to make the basics of the bathroom work with complete peace of mind.

American cherry brings sophistication to London home

A* American-cherry.jpgmin Taha Architects + Groupwork have renovated a 1950s house in London's Bayswater area, cleverly restoring Travertine and cherry panelling using American cherry - a premium wood with a creamy white sapwood and rich reddish brown heartwood, with a fine uniform straight grain and smooth texture.

Popular for its subtle grain patterns and warm colours, the wood is of medium density with good bending properties and medium strength and shock resistance. It will darken as it ages.

Wilsonart develops blogger collaboration for real feedback

* Wilsonart-blogger-collab.jpg"Working with interiors bloggers is proving a compelling way to get consumer trend feedback and product exposure," says Ruby Larvin, marketing communications manager for Wilsonart UK.

Over the last two years the company has worked with several high-profile bloggers offering product at a discount in return for honest feedback and pictures of the worksurfaces in use in real homes, with genuine issues and real families. "Our products are in use in homes, places of work and commercial property across the world," explains Ruby. "It's terrific to get feedback and sight of how the products are performing and what they actually look like in real homes."

Caple kits out Black Cow distillery with high-performance appliances

* Caple_Black-Cow.jpgCaple has joined forces with boutique vodka brand Black Cow to supply appliances to the kitchen in the distillery's new 'brand home', which features a kitchen and bar alongside the distillery at Childhay Manor Farm, West Dorset.

Black Cow's Bar + Kitchen has been designed to cater for cooking demonstrations where visitors can pay for tasting experiences. After a tour of the distillery and learning a few cocktail-making tricks of the trade, visitors sit down to lunch.

Rewards and penalties: taking bold steps to protect your company's data

* Rewards-and-penalties.jpgA study from Veritas Technologies, a leader in multi-cloud data management, has found that the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has the potential to drive major cultural changes in businesses worldwide.

Back to black with the beautiful, new Simplehuman recycling bin

* Simplehuman-bin.jpgSorting wet recyclables can be a pain so consumers could well find benefit in the new CW2054 Simplehuman Dual Recycling Liner Pocket Bin, which not only looks stylish with its striking black finish and stainless steel trim, but which also features two spacious compartments, that will make it easy to separate and store rubbish and recycling.

KItchenAid produces new major domestic appliance brochure

* KItchenAid-collection.jpgKitchenAid, the luxury appliance manufacturer, has produced a new brochure for trade partners, which presents highlights of its major domestic appliance product portfolio.

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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

Date set for KBSA Annual Conference

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The Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom Specialists Association has started the ball rolling with regard to next year's Annual Conference, setting the date for Wednesday 12th September.

Hotpoint Multiflow ovens perfect for the festive season

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Hotpoint has partnered with brand ambassador Jamie Oliver to inspire consumers to get cooking this festive period and create special food memories with friends and family.

Tile Trader's 'Tiling for a Good Cause' winner announced

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Complete Kidz, a community interest company in the West Midlands, has been crowned the winner of a bespoke tiling makeover worth £500 to transform its community centre.

Franke's innovative M-Box makes boiling water tap installation faster and easier

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Aimed at streamlining and simplifying the installation of its Minerva boiling water taps, Franke has developed the innovative new M-Box, allowing the fitting of a Minerva in as little as 20 minutes.

The M-Box has no single parts, just one compact box containing Franke Pro M filter, inlet combination, mixing valve set, gasket set and control box.

CIH Chairman Robin Millwood says industry must pull together to increase margins

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Combined Independents (Holdings) Chairman Robin Millwood has called on the industry to pull together to increase margins, singling out retailers in particular as being able to do more.

Conran collaboration secures gold for VitrA

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VitrA secured a gold award for 'Collaboration with a Designer' for its inspirational Eternity accessories range, designed by Sebastian Conran, at the recent Designer Kitchen & Bathroom Awards.

BiKBBI Installer of The Year 2017: LSI Interiors

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Congratulations to British Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom & Bathroom Installation member Layne Ives of LSI Interiors, who has been awarded the Installer of The Year Award at the ek&bbusiness Awards & Review 2017 ceremony in Central London.

Going for gold: Bushboard's Options collection recognised for Material Innovation

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Congratulations to Bushboard for winning the Gold Award for Material Innovation, with its Options collection, at the 2017 Designer Kitchen & Bathroom Awards. Now in their 15th year, the awards celebrate the very best talent in kitchen and bathroom design.

Armitage Shanks closes bicentenary celebrations with gala evening

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One of Britain's oldest businesses, Armitage Shanks, has culminated its bicentenary celebrations with a gala evening, which included rewards for colleagues as well as celebrity performances.

British Ceramic Tile takes customers on a tour with tiles

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When is a biscuit not a biscuit? When it's a tile. It's all these small details and more that are brought to life in British Ceramic Tile's new corporate video, launched to the trade this month.

Market growth in integrated MDAs expected to continue

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A new report from industry analyst JKMR highlights how integrated major domestic appliances sales growth is continuing to outperform that of the overall fitted kitchen market.

Roca wins gold at Designer Kitchen & Bathroom Awards

The new Roca In-Wash Inspira smart toilet has won a gold award in the Innovation in Technology category at the recent Designer Kitchen & Bathroom Awards.

Sleep success for Bushboard

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Sleep, the exciting hotel design event during November, has been an enormous success for Bushboard Nuance bathroom wall panelling. The company, which is aiming to change outdated perceptions about bathroom wall panelling, demonstrated the product on the stand with a live water feature alongside a seamless wetroom display.

BAL at Skills London

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BAL has teamed up with CITB (Construction Industry Training Body) and The Tile Association to demonstrate the benefits of a career in wall and floor tiling and other trades at Skills London - the UK's biggest jobs and career events for 15-24-year olds.

Modern Homes launches partnership with fine dining chef

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Kitchen, bathroom and bedroom retailer, Modern Homes, has launched a new partnership, 'Yes Chef Dining' that will offer exciting food-related benefits and opportunities for its clients and expand their businesses.


Blanco announces 75% discount on popular Etagon sink and/or Panera-S stainless steel tap

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Blanco UK is offering retailers a 75% discount on any Blanco Etagon sink and/or Panera-S stainless steel tap when purchased for displays from today to 31st January 2018.

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