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KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
30th June 2017


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

International News

Introducing the Metallic Marbles collection by Versital

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Versital has announced the launch of its 'Metallic Marbles' collection, a range comprising three new metallic and marble-inspired finishes which will be available to the hospitality and contract industry followed by a roll out into KBB retailers.

KBBG welcomes Opticolour as new supplier

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Announced at the Kitchen Bathroom Buying Group Annual Members' Meeting 2017, Opticolour has joined the ever-increasing list of suppliers available to KBBG members.

'Party On' with new dishwasher Party Setting by V-ZUG

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V-Zug has launched another technologically advanced feature across its range of Adora dishwashers with a new 'Party Setting', which offers:

On The Level wet room tile-in system: more tile; less drain

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The new Tile-In system from On The Level (OTL) is the perfect solution for customers wanting to see more tile and less drain when they stand in the shower.

Kitchen islands back to the future

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Wilsonart UK is reporting increased sales of its Zenith ultra slimline work surface for use as kitchen islands. The trend for column-come table in the kitchen fell out of favour in recent years but is being championed once again by independent and national chain retailers.

If we wash everything with water, why don't we wash everything with water?

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With 100 of experience, Roca leads the way in the development of bathroom products and is revolutionising the space with its new In-Wash smart toilet.

In-Wash is an innovative WC with in-built technology for exceptional personal hygiene that provides complete cleaning, care and comfort. Its soft curves and minimalistic design mean In-Wash will adapt perfectly to the interior design of any bathroom space for ultimate well-being.

Cosentino work surfaces to be available in ArtiCAD-Pro

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ArtiCAD has announced that new graphics for the Silestone Quartz, Dekton Ultra-Compact and Sensa Protected Granite from Cosentino will shortly be available as a comprehensive graphics catalogue within the ArtiCAD-Pro software.

Bathing beauties from Abacus

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Abacus Bathrooms' new Pure and Simple collection of baths encompasses eight models each manufactured with an 'Armour Plus' coating for a superb finish and immense durability.

Extra deep with sleek lines for a luxurious bathing or showering experience, there are three freestanding models in both acrylic and solid surface resin along with two double-ended, two single-ended and one inset bath.

The Indesit Aria built-in microwave - ideal for the modern busy family

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Indesit has responded to the need for appliances that are easy to use, and has developed the MWI 3443 IX built-in microwave, part of the Indesit Aria collection of cooking appliances.

Utopia targets freestanding bath sector

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Utopia Bathrooms has introduced a new freestanding version of its popular Dualelle double-ended bath to complement its three new modular collections and also to capitalise on the general popularity of feature baths.

Scandinavian-designed bathroom furniture new from VitrA perfect for both small and large bathroom spaces

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VitrA has launched a brand-new collection of stylish, wall hung bathroom furniture to complement the existing Sento Wall-hung WC. The Scandinavian-designed furniture features delicately rounded profiles in combinations that can be tailored for both smaller bathrooms (50cm compact version) but can be scaled up to suit larger proportioned rooms too.

MHS Radiators partners with Antrax to launch exciting new collection

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MHS Radiators has launched a spectacular collection of architecturally influenced radiators, following an exclusive long-term agreement with Antrax IT.

Franke extends its award-winning Maris Plus hood range

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Franke has extended its award-winning Maris Plus extractor hood range with the addition of a lustrous white glass colour option in addition to the existing black glass version. The new hood is available now in three sizes of 60, 80 and 90cm to offer wide design flexibility.

Welcome to the



I made a conscious decision not to mention it in last week's KBzine but I've been thinking a lot about the impact the announcement will have made... Yes - the naming of the brand of fridge freezer purported to have been the cause of the Grenfell Tower fire has to be every manufacturer's worst nightmare, doesn't it? And who'd want to be in the PR company's shoes trying to sort that one out?

The reason I've been thinking about it is that Jo Public never really bothers to work out why the appliance may have caught fire. The brand itself automatically gets the blame when in reality it could be any number of things that could have caused the problem.

I'm sure we've all seen dodgy wiring jobs... plugs where the protective plastic or rubber cover has come away, exposing wires and innards to damp or damage... damaged leads... broken or loose sockets which can be in themselves, death traps... DIY socket extensions or those plug-in adapters so heavily used that the circuit's dangerously overloaded... bad wiring in the building itself... ancient consumer units no longer fit for purpose... Even in my home I briefly lived with a severed fridge freezer lead that had been badly repaired by a supposed professional (who was meant to replace it) and which left me with a dangerous appliance. It happens almost everywhere.

It's just that in most cases - luckily - people don't die.

This morning, I was wondering what the answer might be, in terms of ensuring that our appliances don't become dangerous. As landlords, we're responsible for updating our gas safety certificates annually and wo betide anyone whose tenants have come a cropper with an electrical appliance that hasn't been PAT tested.

Our own homes though, tend to be less-well cared for in terms of gas or electrical safety. I've never had my own gas supply or boiler tested while my electrics are only examined when something stops working and I have to call in an electrician. I'm sure I'm not unique in that respect...

Should we all be testing our homes and appliances regularly, as we do our cars when they're put through the MOT test (and how many of us would MOT test our cars if legislation didn't force us to?) Should the Government perhaps be forcing us to regularly have our homes and appliances safety checked, by introducing legislation to that effect?



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Jan Hobbs



This Week's News

Wonky walls, long lead times and heavy materials are UK kitchen installers' biggest bugbears

* Wonky-walls.jpgThe top five frustrations for UK kitchen installers have been officially ranked, following research carried out by kitchen and bathroom surface specialist, Maxtop Quartz. Whether it's dealing with uneven walls or unrealistic customer expectations, many kitchen fitters face the same problems day in and day out...

The team at Maxtop aims to provide products that combat common installation problems, offering lightweight, durable worktops that are supplied straight from stock to site. However, the company wanted to highlight these frustrations to those working across the trade, in hope that the industry can work together to provide solutions.

Ceramic sanitaryware market worth $59.17 Billion USD by 2022

* ceramic-sanitary-ware.jpgA new 158-page report 'Ceramic sanitary ware market by type' published by MarketsandMarkets, estimates the market to be USD 37.42 Billion in 2017 and predicts that it will reach USD 59.17 Billion by 2022, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 9.6% from 2017 to 2022.

Growth in the real estate sector, increase in demand for ceramic sanitaryware from Southeast Asian countries, change in consumer preferences and a shift of manufacturing facilities to emerging economies are factors driving the growth.

Wholesale Domestic set to 'go national' after breakthrough award

* Wholesale-Domestic.jpgWholesale Domestic, the high-growth Glasgow bathroom specialist, has said that winning a major UK industry award has confirmed its transformation into 'a truly national business' led by the opportunities of ecommerce.

The family-owned company, which earlier this year opened a £3.5million new premises to support its burgeoning sales operation, fought off tough competition to win Best UK Independent Bathroom Retailer at last week's BKU Awards. Wholesale Domestic is the first Scottish company ever to win the award.

Schmidt kitchens bring out natural beauty of wood, with contemporary and classic designs

* Schmidt-kitchens.jpgKitchen trends may come and go but there's one look that never goes out of style and that's a wonderful wooden design full of character and charm.

French furniture specialist Schmidt has been working with this natural material for more than 80 years and its benefits are easy to appreciate. It's warm, versatile and full of heritage and artisan appeal.

Tradespeople are the healthiest workers in the UK, according to new research.

* Tradespeople.jpgA survey of 2,014 UK adults by IronmongeryDirect, has revealed that those working in the trades such as plumbing, construction, and electrical installation are the healthiest workers in the UK.

Due to the nature of their job, a tradesperson is active for up to seven hours per day, burning up to 2,500 calories - more than any other type of worker.

KBSA Awards finalists to be announced soon

* KBSA-Awards.jpgThe KBSA awards 2017 are underway with entries now closed and judges in the process of making their selections for the finalists, which will be announced at the end of July.

"It is fantastic to see a great response from our members once again," says acting KBSA CEO and consultant Uwe Hanneck. "Excellence in design is an important part of the ethos for KBSA retailers and it is important that we recognise and reward it in this way."

'Creating Opportunity out of Change': embracing the conference theme

* BMA_Peter-Bonfield.jpgEmbracing this year's theme of 'Creating Opportunity out of Change', the programming for this year's day-long Bathroom & Kitchen Industry Business Conference has seen some subtle changes.

The conference, on Tuesday 17th October 2017 at The Belfry in Sutton Coldfield, will host its biggest line up of speakers in its 11-year history. No fewer than 13 experts have been engaged to discuss the important changes which the industry is facing.

Abode's Pronteau 3 in 1 video has landed

* Abode-Pronteau-website.jpgTo accompany the launch of the Pronteau 3 in 1 video steaming hot filtered water tap collection, Abode has released a short promotional video to showcase the collection which can now be viewed on the www.pronteau.co.uk website as well as all social media platforms.

The video gives a short summary of the Pronteau 3 in 1 video range and its benefits, so both retailers and customers can see precisely what the tap has to offer - one single, stylish monobloc tap in a variety of styles and finishes accompanied by a compact boiler, perfect for any home or small office. As the advertising strap line points out - Cold, Hot, 98º - Water the way you want it!

Falmec's Noise Reduction System extractors recognised as amongst quietest on market

* Falmec-Noise-Reduction.jpgFalmec's NRS Collection of premium kitchen extraction systems has been awarded Quiet Mark accreditation. The six models; Lumina, Stilo, Horizon, Zenith, NRS Plane and NRS Gruppo Incasso have been recognised as some of the very quietest extractor systems on the market, with noise output levels starting at an almost silent 37db up to a very quiet 53dB on maximum.

Quiet Mark is an international approval award programme associated with the Noise Abatement Society charity. Quiet Mark actively works to encourage brands to offer products with quiet acoustics and noise reductions solutions that positively impact our aural environment.

'Pure and Simple' with Studio Towel Warmer by Vogue (UK)

* Pure-and-Simple.jpgBritish Manufacturer of designer radiators and towel warmers, Vogue (UK), embraces minimalist design with the Studio towel warmer: a sequence of straight cross-rails which create a clear-cut heating solution.

Designed to efficiently hang and dry essential bath linen, Studio is made from high quality brass which is chromed to a mirror-finish.

Zip Water UK gets muddy in memory of former colleague

* Zip-Water.jpgFour intrepid members of Zip Water UK - manufacturer of advanced drinking water appliances - took part in Tough Mudder Scotland 2017 this month, raising money in memory of their former colleague John Phillips, who sadly passed away in January this year.

Completing the course in three and a half hours, the team ran the demanding, and exceptionally muddy, 10.5-mile obstacle race in aid of St Catherine's Hospice, where John was cared for.

Ridgeons employees celebrate over 800 years of service

* Ridgeons_staff.jpgRidgeons, the independent timber and builders' merchant in the East of England, recently honoured the long service and achievements of 64 employees at its 20th annual Long Service Awards reception.

Accumulating an impressive 815 years' combined service between them, employees from 16 of the group's 26 branches, came together and joined Ridgeons' directors and family members for a dedicated celebratory lunch at the Green Light Centre in Pampisford, Cambridge.

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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

Expansion plans announced by The BiKBBI

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The British Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom & Bathroom Installation has announced that it is expanding by opening two new regional offices in the north of England this Summer. The initiative is an exciting one for the Institute as it continues the considerable growth it has enjoyed in recent years.

Creating opportunity out of change: Host and first speaker for B&K Conference 2017 announced

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The organiser of the Bathroom & Kitchen Business Conference, has announced the host and the first speaker in the line-up for the day-long 'Creating opportunity out of change' event on 17th October 2017 at The Belfry Hotel & Resort, Sutton Coldfield.


Trio of new starters join Hoover

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Hoover has appointed three new starters in a drive to support its ambition to become the 'supplier of choice'. Rob Pearse, Gema Aldridge and Becks Simms have assumed the positions of commercial manager - Ireland, account director - freestanding and built-in appliances and account director - built-in appliances, respectively, and collectively bring with them 45 years' industry experience.

Barwick appoints new sales director Steve Hooley

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Independent bathroom distributor Barwick has announced the appointment of Steve Hooley to the role of sales director.


Abode launches all-new Pronteau website

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The Pronteau website from Abode has had a makeover and now includes full details of the new Pronteau 3 in 1 steaming hot water tap collection as well as added functionality and new easy-to-use navigation.

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