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KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
21st March 2014


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

International News

kbb 2014 Innovations Awards

I mentioned innovation so perhaps I should kick off this review with a look at the Innovation Awards winners – announced at the show on Monday. With each and every exhibitor able to enter the awards (sponsored by Blum) by displaying an innovation tag on what they felt was their most innovative product, there was an abundance of products for the judges to consider. “This year the kbb exhibitors showcased more innovative products than ever, with each one providing a new and interesting solution,” they said.

We saw so many exciting innovations that we felt relieved not to have been charged with selecting the winners, who were:

Sensio - lighting up all those dark places...

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As a market leader of kitchen & bedroom lighting solutions and a company that's established a reputation for developing award-winning, innovative LED lighting solutions of the highest quality, it was only appropriate that Sensio had a strong presence at one of the most prominent trade shows in the industry. This enormous stand (at 105sq.m) showed off the company's lighting innovations a treat, allowing visitors to interact with and understand each concept. We certainly liked what we saw...

Bauformat launch a host of exciting new kitchen innovations that stand the test of time

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2014 is set to be a year of celebration for Bauformat, with the leading German kitchen manufacturer toasting its 40 years in the UK, a Golden 'M' award and the UK launch of its "Schnell" range at KBB Birmingham. Visitors to the show will also have a unique preview of its new retail showroom concept - Cube Fashion, a 'shop within a shop' that offers a completely new consumer shopping experience of Bauformat products.

Further eruptions expected as Designer Bathroom Concepts announces launch of full Etna Collection

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With its upcoming appearance as a finalist at this year's KBB Review Awards imminent, Designer Bathroom Concepts adds further ripples to the UK bathroom market with its introduction of the full Etna Collection.

Just as the Etna Bath has added a truly state-of-the-art twist on the freestanding bath, so too does the full Etna Collection. With a continuation of the elegant ripples we have seen on the Etna, the collection features freestanding basins, countertop basins and most strikingly, a round, freestanding version of the Etna Bath.

KBB 2014 preview: Bauformat launches new handleless collection

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Stand - O80

Renowned German kitchen manufacturer Bauformat is delighted to unveil at KBB2014 the UK launch of its new Linea Piantra handleless kitchen, the latest addition to its Burger brand.

Recently showcased at the company's in-house fair, Linea Piantra is a stylish addition to any retailer's portfolio and is competitively positioned to ensure an added value offering.

New electric shower range launched by MX

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MX Group has unveiled its new 'QI' electric shower range - a 'quick installation' range of electric showers that sets new standards for simple installation. Featuring eight entry points for water and electricity - these showers are amongst the simplest and most effective electric shower installation options in today's marketplace.

Ideal for new build or retrofit opportunities, these attractive showers are up to 30% slimmer than other units on the market. They're an ideal replacement product where an old shower has been removed or for shower replacement programmes for social and private landlords.

Burlington gets an angle on traditional design

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Available from March 1st, here's an ingenious idea from Burlington Bathrooms... Installing a traditional high level WC when access to the soil pipe is near a window can be a planning conundrum.

Positioning a WC too far from the soil pipe causes flushing problems so the rule is, the closer the better. By using an angled pipe, the pan itself can be placed on the window wall where the soil pipe is usually situated while the high level cistern is on an adjacent wall.

AEG and Zanussi receive Best Buys in latest Which? Hob Testing

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The AEG HK654200FB induction hob and the Zanussi ZGG66424XA gas hob have both received Which? Best Buy status after recent intensive testing.

The AEG hob scored an impressive 82% and Which? Said: "We were really impressed with this induction hob; it's quick, easy to use and has plenty of useful features. Not only does it cook brilliantly but it's very easy to clean when you've finished. In fact it's so good we didn't hesitate to make it a Best Buy.".

Soak away stress in a soaking tub

There's nothing quite as pleasurable as a long lounge in a deep, comfortable bath - in fact doctors recommend a soak with candlelight and music as a stress buster and as a soothing treatment for anyone suffering from arthritis or joint injuries.

Ingenious space saving with Aqua-Cabinets

British bathrooms and cloakrooms are usually small - but that doesn't mean that there's no room for imaginative and inspiring design. Aqua-Cabinets has ingenious solutions that make the most of a limited floor area, giving every homeowner the chance to enjoy the benefits of modern bathroom design.

Whirlpool's Max microwave oven wins Which? Best Buy and Great Value award

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Whirlpool's popular Max 38 microwave oven has been awarded a Best Buy and Great Value award by Which? Magazine for the best microwave with a grill under £150.

Moduleo creates new products ideal for statement kitchen and bathrooms

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Luxury vinyl flooring manufacturer Moduleo, has unveiled a collection of 16 new statement products to its Transform range, in-line with trend predictions for kitchens and bathrooms in 2014.

KBB Preview: Kitchen Door Workshop doubles the size of its stand

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Stand J80

Kbb Birmingham is just around the corner and Kitchen Door Workshop tells us that after an immensely successful year, it has decided to more than double the size of its stand for the event this time around.

The company first exhibited at kbb LDN in 2013 with a stand size of 15sqm and this year at Birmingham it will take on a stand double the size at 33sqm.

InSinkErator products are a real time saver for the Mistley Kitchen cookery school

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InSinkErator, a global leader and inventor of food waste disposers, and a major player in steaming hot water taps, has been chosen for use in Essex's renowned cookery school, The Mistley Kitchen.

Innovative BAL Rapid-Mat cuts project costs, saves time

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Contractors and tilers will reduce project costs and duration significantly with new BAL Rapid-Mat. The innovative uncoupling solution requires around 20% less adhesive than most cavity uncoupling mats, which need almost 'an extra layer of adhesive' to fill the surface cavities or dimples. The saving amounts to using 1.5 kg less adhesive per square metre, a major saving of 45 kg adhesive per 30 metre roll.

Welcome to the


KBB 2014 Review - Part 3

Welcome to the third and penultimate instalment in our review of what stood out for us at kbb 2014 - which despite being only three weeks ago, seems like a lifetime away. Writing about what we saw and experienced reminds me that there was so much more I wanted to examine more closely... I wish these shows could last for four weeks, rather than just four days. I was sorry to have missed Ecobuild this year but don't envy those I spoke with at kbb Birmingham who were having to flit backwards and forwards between the two!

Also this week we bring you news of the Bathroom & Kitchen Conference which is taking place in the Autumn. The organisers already have some interesting speakers lined up (you can read more below) and bookings are being taken.

Finally, the budget which was announced this week really does have something different, doesn’t it, with the news that those who are retiring no longer need to waste hard-earned savings on a pretty worthless annuity but can splash out on something they really want instead. I wonder how many will opt to upgrade their kitchens, bathrooms and bedrooms so they have something wonderful in which to 'see out their days'?





Jan Hobbs


This Week's News

Blanco makes style statement at KBB

* Blanco-Durinox.jpgJohn was particularly taken with this worktop - the latest addition to the Blanco Steelart line. Durinox is a new material designed for the exclusive custom-made worktop range.

Get into the groove...

* Karonia 2.jpgWhat better way to show the true potential and versatility of your range of solid surfaces than use them to build into your stand a concept kitchen and tables incorporating just about every angle, curve and groove you can think of?

That's exactly what Karonia did at kbb with its Mistral products & I have to admit that John and I were continually distracted from our conversation with the stand team because we kept discovering new configurations and saying to one another: "Have you seen this?" at which point we would both run our hands over it and ask: "How on earth did they do that?"

IDS: not just a pretty face

* IDS - Andrew.jpgInternational Decorative Surfaces,the UK's largest distributor of surfacing materials specialising in flooring, worktops, laminates, panel products and solid surfacing, is part of the Saint Gobain Group, recognised as Europe's leading organisation in building materials.

Just when you thought you knew it all...

* Salice.jpgAs I've so often said, one of the beauties of visiting a show in this industry is the ability it gives you to touch things. Come across a manufacturer of opening systems for cabinet furniture and what do you do? Open every cupboard and drawer that's within touching distance, then close it again!

But what we didn't realise is that there's actually a knack to how you do it.

AEG launches ProCombi SousVide Oven, bringing professional cooking techniques into the home

* AEG.jpgAEG's ProCombi SousVide brings the precisely controlled cooking method of professional chefs to its multifunction steam oven to deliver melt-in-the-mouth flavoursome and nutritious food at home. The addition of the AEG vacuum-sealer drawer completes the sous vide system.

"Sous vide is a wonderfully versatile cooking technique, and AEG is proud to bring it into UK homes," explained Helen Casewell. "There is almost no limit to the range of dishes that can be enhanced using this method."

Pelipal's Solitaire 6005 and 7005: New for 2014 and highly covetable!

* Pelipal sans girl.jpgBringing out the 'girlie' in me was Pelipal's new Solitaire 7005, displayed in black with a fine glitter effect. I'd have picked it up and carried it home given the chance...

The asymmetrical basin in mineral marble is also available in a modern grey metallic and mineral marble white as well as the black - all enhanced with a fine glitter effect. The gently rounded curves of the vanity unit are echoed in the basins and the selection of handles. New LED lights can be incorporated beneath the wash basin for night-time ambience or be set above, below or included in the mirror - all carefully positioned to provide light without glare.

Carron Phoenix: so much to see and a history lesson too...

* Carron - Steve.jpgThere were so many fabulous products on the Carron Phoenix stand that we wondered how they managed to remember all the features and benefits but remember them they did! John and I loved this new design feature whereby the taps can be co-ordintated with the sink and we could see that we weren't the only ones.

Also attracting a lot of interest were the company's popular Value Packs which have been updated to offer an even wider choice and even better value, with prices being pegged at 2013 levels to support retailers and help protect their margins.

Extractair - extractors which add that extra 'vibe'

* extractor 3.jpgJohn's not much of a Michael Jackson fan and had it not been for the friendly faces and warm greetings provided by the team on the Extractair stand, he'd probably have moonwalked on by, but a change of tune soon captured us both.

The extractor hood, so often now a centrepiece of the kitchen in terms of positioning, function and striking design, has been taken into the entertainment business too. The one we were looking at was playing music...

A new take on the goldfish bowl...

* fishy-toilet.jpgWe couldn't help stopping to find out what happened to the goldfish when the chain was flushed...

Youth, Energy, Vitality, Ideas, Innovation...

These are the words Yvonne Orgill is using to describe the progress being made with the arrangements for the Bathroom & Kitchen Conference 2014.

"We're delighted with how the industry's long established conference is developing this year," enthuses Yvonne, CEO of the Bathroom Manufacturers Association, which organises the annual event.

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News in Brief

Youth, Energy, Vitality, Ideas, Innovation...

These are the words Yvonne Orgill is using to describe the progress being made with the arrangements for the Bathroom & Kitchen Conference 2014.

"We're delighted with how the industry's long established conference is developing this year," enthuses Yvonne, CEO of the Bathroom Manufacturers Association, which organises the annual event. Arrangements are well in hand and coming along at quite a pace. We have the location secured - Heythrop Park in Oxfordshire, and the dates of 6th and 7th October for the fringe and the conference day itself. And we are now announcing the theme: Marketing the Future."

How to contact us at The KBzine:
Jan Hobbs
Publishing Editor
Email:[email protected]
Tel: +44 (0)1372 811 307 
Mobile: 07980 288 373





John Austen
Publishing Director
Email:[email protected]
Tel: +44 (0)1580 755 863
Mobile: 07766 707 888
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Recent News

KBB Review Awards 2014 winners announced at landmark 20th ceremony

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Winners of the kbbreview Awards 2014 were announced at a much anticipated ceremony, held at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole on Tuesday. The occasion marked a landmark 20 years of the most prestigious awards event in the kitchen and bathroom industry, which are organised by kbbreview magazine.

A packed seminar programme hit the spot in more ways than one!

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Visitors were able to visit the seminar theatre for business advice and inspiration in a free, four-day, seminar programme.

It also gave the aching feet of those who attended, some much-needed respite!

Mobil Turi UK's kitchen: all the way from Italy

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As one of Italy's largest kitchen manufacturers, Mobil Turi was delighted to be showing at kbb Birmingham 2014, using the event to introduce its collection of Italian kitchens to the UK for the first time.

Tiler wins brand new van with BAL

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Professional tiler Mark Ellam has enjoyed the best possible start to 2014, as the lucky winner of a brand new van from BAL. Tilers using BAL Micromax2, BAL Max-Flex Fibre and BAL White Star plus and logging their purchases online, had earned free entries into the draw during 2013.

Mark's name was chosen randomly from thousands of entries, winning him a Ford Transit Connect, bearing the livery of his company, Imperial Tiling.

Setting fears aside, Kitchen Door Workshop retains 'Buy with Confidence' accreditation

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The online kitchen and bathroom replacement door specialist the Kitchen Door Workshop understands that many people can feel wary of buying online.

As such, it has applied and been accredited for the seventh year running for the Buy with Confidence East Sussex Scheme, once again reassuring cautious online shoppers that they are making a well researched choice.

Brits expose brazen bathroom behaviour in cheeky poll from Splashdirect

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Bath-loving Brits bring a new meaning to a night on the tiles. A poll of UK homes, led by bath and shower company Splashdirect, reveals the racy role our bathrooms play in our romantic relationships:

- Half of Brits have indulged in frisky bathroom behaviour at home
- Almost 40% have had a steamy session in a hotel bathroom
- One in 10 have snuck off to a friend's bathroom at a party for a bit of passion

Back by popular demand: BMA's Annual Conference details announced

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The Bathroom Manufacturers Association has announced the venue and date for the Bathroom and Kitchen Business Conference 2014.


Nicola brings wealth of industry experience to Bagno Brand Manager role

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Bagnodesign, manufacturer and supplier of design-led bathroom solutions, has strengthened its marketing and sales team in the UK and Europe with the appointment of Nicola Norris to the role of Brand Manager.

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