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KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
20th March 2015


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

International News

Easy installation and stylish showering with Abacus Manufacturing Group's Vessini range

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Combining cutting edge design, innovation and quality, the Vessini range of shower controls from Abacus Manufacturing Group has been conceived to enhance the bathroom experience for the end user while proving an integrated solution that makes installation easy.

Vessini brassware embraces manual and thermostatic shower and diverter valves. These include standard fittings and those that work in combination with the Vessini universal Easi-Box system which provides the installer with a simple installation procedure.

BAL breaks new ground with launch of high spec training centre

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A state-of-the art £300,000 Innovation & Technology Centre (ITC) has been officially opened by the leader of Stoke-on-Trent City Council Councillor Mohammad Pervez at Building Adhesives in Trentham.

Councillor Pervez opened the Centre alongside the company's managing director Peter Bell at a special launch event last Wednesday.

Victoria + Albert Baths launches its first ever collection of bathroom furniture

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Victoria + Albert Baths has now launched its first ever collection of bathroom furniture. Suitable for a range of interior schemes and styles, the collections signify Victoria + Albert's move into developing beautiful, practical bathroom furniture alongside elegant freestanding baths and basins.

Seven tips for better bathroom lighting, from 'across the pond'

Doug Walter, AIA, Senior Architect at Godden/Sudik Architects in Centennial, Colorado, US, contacted us a couple of weeks back saying: “I’ve been a subscriber to KBzine since the Schwarz's era, and enjoy very much the British take on the industry, so much so that I even flew over to attend Interbuild one year”.

Doug has 35 years’ experience in residential remodelling and custom homes and has won more than 120 awards for his kitchens, bathrooms, and other remodelling projects.

Methven set to turn showering on its head with launch of Aurajet technology

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Methven, the global designer and manufacturer of premium showers and tapware, has developed a pioneering new showering technology. Exclusively engineered for Methven's striking new Aio range, the patented Aurajet technology delivers superior spray, maximum warmth and offers an unparalleled showering experience.

Contemporary Partridge Grey finish for PWS' Milbourne range

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Hot on the heels of launching Milbourne Stone, PWS has introduced an ex-stock contemporary partridge grey finish to the range. This brings the number of stocked Milbourne colours to six, alongside alabaster, almond, chalk, sage and stone, with a further 18 colours on a paint-to-order basis.

New Glacier from Mistral - a cooler shade of white...

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Glacier, the solid white decor from the Mistral solid surface worktop range, has been re-engineered to create a crisper, purer, white effect.

Technology meets tradition with high level WC's from Burlington

If authentic period detail is a must, a traditional high level WC is the only option. The designers at Burlington Bathrooms are experts when it comes to nostalgia - combining yesteryear design with the finest in modern technology.

Abode's Edge tap... pushing the boundaries

In recent years the humble kitchen tap has received a massive transformation and now takes its rightful place in the home; no longer the simple piece of utilitarian and functional design. Abode kitchen taps are now high on the agenda in the design stakes using only the finest components, from the silky smooth valve cartridges to the anti-splash aerators at the end of the spout.

New iKBBI consumer protection insurance to launch

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As part of The Installation Standards Partnership (iSP) initiative, the Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom & Bathroom Installers (iKBBI) is in the process of agreeing terms with a leading provider of consumer protection insurance to introduce a mandatory policy for retailers to ultimately protect their customers and installers in the event of a financial collapse.

Saniflo supports National Apprentice competition

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Saniflo has a long history of supporting plumbing students. From working with colleges throughout the UK to providing on-line training modules on its website, the company is committed to investing in the plumbers of the future.

Royal Arcade over-bath shower is truly stunning

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Arcade is the truly timeless brand set to provide the ultimate in luxury for any traditional or contemporary setting. This latest stunning piece, the Royal Freestanding over-bath shower temple, is an elegant alternative to the freestanding Piccadilly shower temple, and is yet another example of the striking design and quality of the range.

Sanitaryware durability: new test process launched for secure areas

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No sanitaryware product should be considered as indestructible. That's a fact and it is true that some sanitaryware products are more robust than others. But how do you know which is the best choice for a particular installation?

Whirlpool dishwasher awarded 9/10 by TrustedReviews

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The new Whirlpool dishwasher, the 6th Sense PowerDry ADP 900 IX, has been awarded 9/10 by TrustedReviews, which praised the Whirlpool dishwasher for its hero features, acknowledged as the PowerClean and PowerDry programmes.

Cosentino Group expands its presence in Canada

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The Spanish Cosentino Group is strengthening its position in Canada with new company-owned facilities; firmly establishing the multinational in this market. Cosentino currently operates a Centre in Calgary and a 'City Associated' showroom in Toronto, both of which opened recently. The Group is also planning a new Centre in Vancouver in the near future.

Welcome to the


I had to have a chuckle at some of the headlines in the press today, slating the shops and supermarkets for failing to have ordered in sufficient stocks of special eyewear to enable us to all safely view today’s highly-anticipated celestial dance.

From the comments I’ve seen on social media I would say that the buyers have scored something of a coup, by not ordering in millions of pairs of these special specs which, on reflection, were not needed. I understand that most people suffered the same disappointment as I did, peering through layers of cloud in a futile attempt to catch a glimpse of the action – although it was quite obvious from the skies from very early in the morning that even this would be a waste of time and that a last minute run to the shops to buy eclipse glasses was not on the cards.

If you run a store that is constantly having to mark down bathroom designs that just aren’t selling, kitchens in colours that aren’t attracting interest and appliances that won’t sell however much they’ve been reduced in price, perhaps you ought to consider head-hunting the buyers who decided not to order great quantities of eclipse glasses, since their foresightedness was clearly on the nose!

And perhaps if I’d been a bit more savvy, I’d have advertised the ones I’d saved from 1999 on e-bay… “three pairs of eclipse glasses, never worn, due to cloud cover in Cornwall”. Some things never change, do they?




Jan Hobbs


This Week's News

UK Budget '15 - steady as she goes!

* GrahamBall.jpgThe Kitchen, Bathroom & Bedroom Specialists Association believes that the budget, announced on Wednesday, will help businesses large and small, with some additional benefits for consumers - giving them more confidence to spend.

Graham Ball, Chief Executive Officer, says: "I think that the overall impact will be on the positive side which should give many consumers more confidence to continue spending. Many of the measures have been widely trailed, and the scrapping this Autumn's planned fuel duty rise is welcomed -particularly, as The Chancellor indicated, by 'white van man!'

Triton Showers' managing director visits Downing Street

* Lorna-Fellowes_Triton-no10.jpgLorna Fellowes, managing director of The Great British Shower Company, Triton Showers, visited Downing Street on 2nd March to attend an exclusive 'Champions of Manufacturing' event.

Lorna was invited to Downing Street with a group of around 25 regional manufacturers who were joined by MP for Nuneaton, Marcus Jones, to enjoy a reception and meeting with Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne. The group discussed the future of British industry and the important effect it has on economic recovery.

Baumatic launches Easter brand awareness campaign in association with major new cinema release

* DreamWorks-HOME.jpgBaumatic has joined forces with DreamWorks to promote the Easter blockbuster animated cinema release called Home. Starring Steve Martin, Jennifer Lopez, Jim Parsons and Rihanna, the film is released today and will continue its run throughout the Easter Holidays and until end of April.

Targeting families with its associated brand awareness campaign using print, bus-sides, billboards and social media, Baumatic has taken full page advertisements in high circulation family-oriented interiors magazines including Your Home, Style at Home and Home Style to promote its range of fashionable appliances.

Designing for Climate Change - a World Water Day event

* worldwaterday.jpgTo mark World Water Day 2015, Roca is hosting a special event at the Roca London Gallery on Monday 23td March, to highlight the role designers and architects play in responding to the risks of extreme weather, such as flooding, in the UK.

The theme for World Water Day 2015 is 'Water and Sustainable Development.' As a manufacturer with strong sustainability and environmental values, this is a particularly important topic for Roca.

Gorenje signs Sirius Buying Group as an official supplier

* Sirius-Buying-Group.jpgAppliance manufacturer Gorenje has announced the appointment of Sirius Buying Group as an official UK supplier. As a result of this partnership, Sirius will be able give its members access to Gorenje's entire portfolio of products, including new lines added for 2015.

"We are delighted to be working with Sirius Buying Group and its membership of more than 230 retail outlets," says Stuart Benson, national sales manager for Gorenje UK.

Manufacturing apprentice talks about learning safety and new skills, in unison

* training.jpgThe British Safety Council's priority is to raise young people's awareness of health and safety risks. A new video, Manufacturing risks: an apprentice's view, features Leila, a young apprentice engineer, walking a production line while she talks about risk and learning new skills.

"Video is a great way to get an insight into what work and good health and safety actually looks like," says Matthew Holder, head of campaigns at the British Safety Council.

New sales & design director for Alno Contracts

* Marc-Fox.jpgAlno Contracts has announced the appointment of a new sales & design director based at its Sevenoaks office.

Marc Fox has joined the company to replace the previous director, Dean Williams, who is now the CEO at Alno USA in New York.

Tradesmen call upon future government to increase availability of skilled workers through support for apprenticeships

* Screwfix-Tradesman-Manifesto.jpgUK tradesmen, ahead of 2015 elections, are calling for Government support to increase the availability of skilled workers through the encouragement of apprenticeships, according to new research conducted by multi-channel retailer Screwfix.

More than three quarters of UK tradesmen want the Government to raise the number of apprenticeship places from 110,000 to 400,000 to encourage as many school leavers to take up apprenticeships as go to university.

Infrarad - the smart way to heat it up

Infrarad-Aug14.jpgWorking in a different way to other forms of heating, infrared heating potentially consumes half the energy required to run conventional radiators so can heat a commercial or residential property for less than the cost of older, inefficient gas and oil boilers. Infrared heating also substantially cuts electricity bills where it replaces an electric boiler, electric convector heaters, storage heaters or electric space heaters.

This may sound groundbreaking but infrared heat is nothing new. Infrared is electromagnetic energy with a wavelength longer than visible light and shorter than microwaves.

Dream Doors an eight-time winner at Franchise Marketing Awards

* dream-doors-network.jpgKitchen makeover franchise, Dream Doors, has become an eight-time award winner in the Franchise Marketing Awards (FMAs), the national awards ceremony that recognises the franchise industry's most innovative and effective marketing campaigns.

Dream Doors has been a finalist at the FMAs a record 25 times and triumphed in this year's awards against 15 other companies in the hotly contested 'Best Franchisee Marketing Support' category.

Open Day a success for Classic

* Classic-launchevent.jpgFamily owned KBB retailer Classic, held an open day to celebrate the opening of its extensive new showroom in Redditch.

The highly successful group, established in 1987, added bathrooms and bedrooms to the service offering and now has showrooms in four locations across Worcestershire and the West Midlands.

A colourful future for classic kitchen design

* schueller.jpgContemporary-classic is without doubt the stand out trend for 2015 - the merging of classical and contemporary says schueller. From the muted colours of a more historic palette used across contemporary designs and finishes, to modern high gloss fronts on classical country style cabinets, it's all about creating options that suit both personal style and architectural surrounding.

This is what 2015 schueller.C collection offers.

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

Ideal Standard says its new flushing technology is the bathroom equivalent of the dawn of the jet engine! See it at: www.youtube.com/watch?v=4iA4FaH9EQY … If you didn’t make it to the Frankfurt show last week, you can discover Toto’s new NeoRest collection by calling: T: +44 (0)20 7831 7544 … Ripples is offering some great tips for bathroom storage – E: [email protected] … Congratulations to Better Bathrooms for winning its 25th Business Award - www.betterbathrooms.com

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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Key new senior appointment at ArtiCAD

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CAD software specialist for the KBB industry, ArtiCAD, has announced the appointment of Colin Seaton to the newly created role of national accounts manager. This appointment is a key element in the company's strategy for significant growth and development over the coming years.

BAL strengthens specifier support with new business development manager

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Building Adhesives Ltd, the renowned manufacturer of tile adhesives, grouts, sealants and ancillary products, has appointed Matthew Leaver as national business development manager, strengthening the company specification support.


Pick up a free framing system along with your know-how at Geberit installer training days

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Taking time out from a busy work schedule to take in some training can be tricky, but Geberit makes it worth an installer's while, not only with free training that ensures your skills and knowledge are up to scratch, but by giving each trainee a Geberit Duofix framing system and flush plate to practice their new-found skills on, worth over £250.


Gorenje makes a splash with new 'Colour' brochure

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Gorenje's new 'Colour' brochure highlights the varied selection of coloured appliances the company offers. Designed for retailers, it showcases the wide range of colour options available on selected Gorenje cooling, washing and drying products.

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