KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-news - since 2002
20th May 2011
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Roca has announced that it has recently acquired Akvaton, a leading Russian company specialising in bathroom products. This acquisition marks a very important step in Roca's consolidation in this strategically important market, and at the same time strengthening its leadership position worldwide.
AEG has introduced five fantastic cooling products from its Built-in 2011 Neue Kollektion range.
Following the successful launch last year of its Mechanical Extract Ventilation Heat Recovery units, Polypipe Ventilation has expanded its HR range with the addition of high capacity models designed for larger properties.
Welcome to the
KBB London has now been and gone and hopefully most exhibitors had a good event. Obviously there will always be comparisons made with Birmingham, but this is one of those instances which has to be viewed as a regional event, which gives London-based designers and specifiers a convenient opportunity to view what the industry has to offer.
The show certainly appeared to be steadily busy throughout most of the days that we were there - we didn't hear any complaints from anyone that we spoke to, although there were some quiet backwaters that you'd expect at any trade show. For us, not so far from London, ExCel is a great venue, and if there are sufficient new products to see, well worth the journey for those based a little further afield.
So what was on show? We couldn't see everyone of course, but our visit report is below, as is the announcement of the winners of the KBB Review Awards.
This Week's News
The results are in! The much-admired annual kbbreview Industry Awards, organised and hosted by Taylist Media's kbbreview magazine, have rewarded the very best in room design, product innovation and business practice in the UK's kitchen and bathroom industry.
The awards took place at the Platinum Suite at the ExCel centre, London on Monday 16th May 2011. They were hosted by the stand-up comedian Alun Cochrane, famed for his appearances on Michael McIntyre's comedy roadshow, Eight Out of Ten Cats and Mock the Week.
The Room was a 'bespoke area showcasing amazing bathroom products' according to the organisers. Sure enough Roca was there with its new Armani/Roca concept, as well as its latest bathroom furniture offering stylish storage solutions. Fittingly its latest Urban Basin collection is entitled 'London.'
Also displayed was the W+W all-in-one wash basin and WC designed to maximise space and save water that we saw in Birmingham. There weren't the crowds buzzing around this unit like before, but give us another '76 Summer (as predicted) and we can expect to see more water conservation products from other manufacturers.
T: 01530 830 080
The Quintessentially range of taps all have smooth, top quality German valves, extra long tail pipes to aid fitting and future maintenance plus accounting for a variety of worktop thicknesses. Tail pipes are factory fitted and then all taps are quality tested before being despatched in distinctive Abode packaging.
Sensio Lighting's latest additions to its range are the magnetic Surface Light Source LED light - a small but powerful light that looks like halogen but with the benefits of LED. Being magnetic it can be attached to any magnetic surface for fuss-free installation.
Slideline is a neat idea. Designed to provide new levels of customisation of lighting, it enables the user to snap lamp heads onto and off the track with the option of adding additional lamp heads as required. Once fitted, the lamp heads can be slid along the track to allow precision positioning.
We couldn't resist playing with the various interactive elements on show - not in this one though - I was taking the photo!
T: 0845 0340 780
The Hawa Concepta is designed for multi-functional room solutions where pivoting wood or glass doors slide away to save space.
As it can handle virtually any dimensions and weights up to 50 kg (110 lbs), it allows creativity to flow with various installation options including profiles and handles. It can even close a recess without any protruding cabinet body as doors are located into a very narrow recess inside the cabinet... Perfect for home office or utility areas where space is limited.
Installation requires no processing other than drilling holes for positioning and for the concealed hinges. Adjustments are conveniently made from the front.
T:+41 44 767 92 48
More practically, its Glink is made from extremely durable polyethylene and is available in six solid colours. There is even a version that glows, "We have thought of everything!" says the company's Rachel Watts.
The latest version of Fusion has been designed to represent the requirements of kitchen and bathroom designers through as many as 34 new pieces of functionality, including an enhanced unit parameters interface, advanced change colour functionality, the ability to define tile grout colour and thickness and much more.
As well as a launch platform for the new version, "The event has the added benefit of allowing the team to receive direct feedback from the people who will be using the software on a daily basis," says Craig Rothwell, managing director of 20-20 Technologies.
Bohle was showing its Portavant glass door closing system from Willach.
Portavant, with its Softstop technology, is said to be the 'ultimate' modern glass fixing for doors, which slows as it closes gently and quietly, preventing accidents and the possibility of breakage, and ensuring that the door closes fully.
In addition to Portavant, Bohle carries a wide range of tools and fittings for glass.
T: 0800 616151
The company's Nick Bevan took us through all the details, but in short the effective ceramic divider means that two different dishes can be cooked at the same time - even at two wildly different temperatures.
Falmec has now adapted the design of its stunning glass extractor range Mirabilia to include an LED lighting system in place of halogen and incandescent light bulbs, to reduce power consumption by a massive 96%
B_Free Fusion is the latest in bespoke product development from Barazza. This made to order product allows a unique choice of combination of B_Free hobs to satisfy any cooking requirement. The selection is seamlessly integrated to make a continuous cooking surface, perfect for the ultimate freedom of choice. Barazza will consider the incorporation of a selection of sinks dependent on design.
T: 01787 224921
With innovation and functionality as key drivers for the company's success, EQ offers three levels of software, Foundation, Essential, and Professional.
Foundation is the latest product release and has been offered as a more affordable version to its cost-conscious customers who may have felt the economic pinch over the past two or three years.
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Celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, Franke has launched a new marketing initiative to drive the company further into the consumer market. To reinforce the transition from trade-driven product supplier to aspirational consumer lifestyle brand, Heidi Klum has been announced as brand ambassador and, as such, will feature in the new worldwide advertising/POS/marketing campaign.
The popularity of underfloor heating is on the rise. Discerning homeowners are showing an increased desire for efficiency and comfort and underfloor heating ticks all the boxes.
The OFT's short market study into extended warranties for domestic electrical goods, which will focus on whether competition for warranties is sufficiently effective to ensure consumers get value for money in a market worth well over £750million, is now underway. The results will be published later this Summer.
One of the West County's best established kitchen retailers, Bradbury's, based in Exeter, has become an appointed Stoneham distributor and enjoyed almost immediate success with an important order.
About 50,000 plumbers, gas fitters and heating engineers will start receiving letters this month from HM Revenue & Customs,alerting them to the chance to take advantage of a special time-limited tax plan to put right any gaps that might exist in their tax affairs.
A Bradford builder has been jailed for trying to cut costs by doing his own gas and electric installation in a granny flat he was building.