KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-news - since 2002
11th September 2015
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An opulent combination of form and function, Quadra encompasses a rigid structure to provide practical storage space and shelves for towels, as well as impressive levels of heat for the bathroom.
The Marino family has a striking contemporary design suitable for all bathroom styles with its distinctive long lever handle making one-handed operation effortless. The tall, square shaped design of Marino products with radiused edges will give all bathrooms an interior design look and feel.
"Contemporary and cool, we absolutely love it!"
I still haven’t quite got my head around the EU Court Judgment, which has decreed that the time taken by those who have to leave from home, to travel to the first client of the day and the time taken travelling home after leaving the final client of the day, should be taken into consideration when calculating the number of hours worked each day.
I suppose that for a salesperson who often has to drive for several hours to get to that 09:00 appointment, or finishes his or her final appointment at gone 18:00 and is a couple of hundred miles from home, it will make an enormous difference to the ‘working’ day, but with mortgages to pay, sales figures to achieve and jobs to worry about, who in their right mind is going to rock the boat by, perhaps, insisting on taking time off in lieu because they’re really doing a 90 hour week rather than the contracted 40 hours?
Then of course there are the delivery drivers and service engineers, who are already under the cosh in terms of meeting deadlines. Does the new ruling mean that we as customers will have to wait longer for goods we’ve ordered or for repairs to be carried out? And will we end up paying extra for goods and services to cover the fact that less time will be spent delivering them or for the extra hours those involved will now effectively be working? Will companies have to take on extra staff to cover?
www.curia.europa.eu/jcms/upload/docs/application/pdf/2015-09/cp150099en.pdf has the details and if you have any views on how this will affect our industry of your business, I’d love to hear them.
Finally, our congratulations go to the three teams from our industry who’ve all completed mammoth feats of endurance to raise money for charity recently. With two of the teams taking on the Three Peaks challenge, John quipped that it won’t be long before someone will install traffic lights up there! You can read all about their efforts below and please donate if you can.
This Week's News
Thanks to the group's enormous stand which took in 3,200sq.m, visitors - including the media and trade partners - experienced the vast offering and very distinctive complementary brands; KitchenAid, Bauknecht, Whirlpool, Hotpoint and Indesit.
Dream Doors, the UK's largest kitchen makeover retailer, is expanding into Ireland, with the opening of its first franchised showroom in Belfast. The new store owner, Jon O'Hara, will also hold the Dream Doors master licence in Ireland, with a remit to find new franchisees in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
Dream Doors has 58 showrooms in England, Scotland and Wales. Since its launch in 1999, its model of replacing kitchen doors and work surfaces at fraction of the cost of a refit has proved hugely popular with consumers. The company recently completed its 40,000th kitchen makeover and 2015 turnover is up 24% compared to 2014, meaning the retailer is on target to turnover more than £25m by the end of 2015.
Figures released in early September by Markit have shown that the Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) has risen to 57.3, up 0.2 on July's figures. While not as strong as the boom of 2014, where the industry was seeing returns of over 60 for much of the year, these figures represent a stable growth not seen in a decade.
Much of this sustained growth has been led by the rise in residential construction across the UK, something which is receiving significant support from government initiatives across the country.
Exploiting the strength and slim proportions only steel can offer, bespoke internal glazed partitions, screens and shower enclosures, designed and manufactured by Steel Window Association members, are growing in popularity.
Especially prevalent in high-end commercial and residential projects, steel is the favourite today due to the visual, innate solidity of the material; without being overpowering, steel creates a look no other material can replicate due to the slenderness and robustness of the steel sections.
British bath manufacturer Cabuchon Bathforms has announced the launch of the Yasahiro, a modern take on the traditional Japanese Ofuro and a bath that draws upon more than 20 years' experience in deep soaking tub design.
Since the 1991 launch of its first contemporary, Japanese-style deep soaking tub - the Imersa, the company has been steadily introducing new and improved designs.
Lustrolite acrylic high gloss wall panelling is proving exceptionally popular with designers and retailers who want to add pizzazz to kitchens and bathrooms - or, indeed, any room.
TV sports presenter and reporter, Hayley McQueen, is to put Glasgow's tradespeople to the test at Stax Trade Centres' upcoming store launch in Glasgow next Thursday (17th September) when Stax, which has been supplying the trade for over 30 years, will launch its first Glasgow store with a range of challenges designed to test the skills of the region's finest tradespeople.
David Hibbert, joint managing director at Stax Trade Centres, says: "We've had our sights set on a Glasgow store for some time and along with our existing Edinburgh offering we're confident the new store will allow us to cater for the whole of the Scottish market. We've invested heavily in the area and its local people to provide a wide range of quality and affordable products and services to trade customers."
Miele has launched interactive and inspiring 'Taste for Design' consultations, replacing the current 'Let's Do Lunch' programme. Developed for keen foodies planning a new kitchen or updating a current design, the consultations are designed to showcase the signature features of Miele appliances and are available for all kitchen studios and independent retailers to utilise with prospective customers.
Bringing extensive experience of the plumbing and heating sector, Tom King has joined the Saniflo team as area sales manager for the whole of the Scotland. He joins at an exciting time when the company is enjoying success through its portfolio of macerators and pumps, as well as its range of shower cubicles and assisted living products.
Scotland represents a great opportunity for Saniflo thanks to the high level of construction, refurbishment and renovation activity. With years of retail, manufacturing and distribution experience under his belt, latterly working as branch manager for Plumbase, Tom is well placed to capitalise on the opportunity. He says:
Stefan Firth, chief Executive of Yorkshire Tile Co, Nick Braybrooke, managing director of Ceramic Tiles, Julian Hase, managing director at Hampshire Tile Warehouse and David Brown, sales director at Tileflair, competed in the Race the Sun - Lake District 2015 for Action Medical Research for Children.
After 31 years in the industry, Kitchens International's director Sandy Park is retiring. As a stalwart member of the team and a huge influence on getting the company to where it is today as one of Scotland's - if not the UK's - leading independent kitchen designer/retailers, Sandy has been hugely influential in the growth and development of the company.
After spending four years working for small independents, in 1989 Sandy set up Elegant Homes, which in 2007, merged with Kitchens International. As administration and strategic projects director, Sandy was tasked with creating an infrastructure that would allow the company to grow over the ensuing years. His influence is apparent throughout every department of the company.
Team members have to cope with changing clothes, eating, drinking and sleeping as they travel to their next destination by road. It is a physically and mentally demanding team event that tests everyone at different stages - but it can be done.
This weekend saw bathroom product manufacturer, HiB take its fundraising efforts to a whole new level - three in fact - as a dedicated team of 12 employees embarked on the UK's infamous 24-hour Three Peaks Challenge in aid of charity.
The gruelling Three Peaks Challenge sees participants summit three of the highest peaks in the UK; Snowdon (1085m), Scafell Pike (978m) and Ben Nevis (1344m) in just 24 hours.
The aptly-named Phoenix Collection is made from re-purposed belts. Each belt is carefully selected, cleaned and artfully laid-up to create a unique piece.TRIMTO]
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