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KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
12th October 2018


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

International News

Danby launches in the UK as first part of European expansion project

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Danby Appliances, the leading Canadian manufacturer/distributor, has announced its expansion to Europe commencing with the UK market.

Making waves in kitchen design with new granite sinks

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A bold design statement for the contemporary kitchen, Londa is just one of a complete new collection of beautiful granite sinks now available from Abode.

Steel screens for stylish interior spaces

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While steel doors and windows are synonymous with rugged performance and slim sightlines, the distinctive frames offered by members of the Steel Window Association are also increasingly being chosen to help create stylish interior spaces for locations such as restaurants, hotels and residential properties.

Can designer bathroom pieces increase in value?

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With the current market for refurbished Victorian and Edwardian sanitaryware, the answer is yes. A restored Victorian console basin on a stand can sell for up to £3000 while a refinished cast iron roll top will be well over £1000.

Abacus Elements relaunches ultimate Tile Backer Board

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Abacus Elements has relaunched its range of ultimate Tile Backer Board, which is hailed as the most comprehensive range of quality and cost-effective tile backer boards on the market.

The company is well known as the 'go-to' brand for waterproofing and wetroom solutions in the bathroom, creating innovative and flexible designs coupled with ultimate build quality.

Toto's Washlet certified as world's No.1 brand when it comes to shower toilets

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Research published by Euromonitor International has revealed that Japanese bathroom manufacturer Toto is the number one brand globally in terms of sales in the shower toilet market (toilets with bidet functions) with its Washlet shower-toilet.

VitrA launches new Plural range at Design Junction. See it while you can!

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This week through to the evening of 23rd September, beautiful bathroom brand VitrA is participating for the first time in designjunction, London's premier exhibition for contemporary design and one of the main destinations of the London Design Festival.

Which? Best Buy accolade for Amica fridge freezer

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Amica is delighted to report that the FK3213DFX fridge freezer has been chosen as a Best Buy by Which? "This is a feature-rich model and has been a great seller for Amica," comments marketing manager Steve Corbett, "so we are thrilled to have this acknowledgement."

Blanco ArchPro offers the expert look

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The Blanco ArchPro series of taps demonstrates the expert design from Blanco UK. The semi-professional mixer tap has a twin lever to regulate the temperature of the water flow to suit the user's requirements.

Welcome to the



While I haven't yet got a wodge of Blu Tak stuck to the camera lens on my computer and I haven't yet searched for a similar lens on my smart TV so I can put it out of action, I'm definitely one of those who ignores the regular emails from my gas and electricity supplier pleading with me to book an appointment to have a smart meter fitted at home. And it's not just the tone which is clearly meant to make me feel as if I've won the lottery as I read it, that makes me feel uneasy...

It appears that I'm not the only one who reacts in this way and I'm sure we're not all of a nervous disposition, and I doubt very much that we're all conspiracy theorists either.

Research conducted by www.showerstoyou.co.uk titled: 'The concerns preventing Brits from owning smart home technology', reveals that the threat and consequences of a 'hack/cyber-attack' at 39% is the biggest concern about smart home devices/appliances, by those who don't have any in their living environment. There's been a lot of press coverage lately about the threat of cyber-attack but the thought of someone hacking into my supply and somehow getting me to pay for their energy usage hadn't occurred to me until I read the report.

Having once shared a house with someone who seemed hell-bent on hacking into our neighbours' Internet with the goal of downloading lots of movies and music (they didn't stay long!) I can understand how this can happen though. However, I'm more concerned by the 'Big Brother' aspect than anything else. It's all a bit intrusive and to be honest, I'm pretty adept at keeping my bills to a minimum anyway. After all, who can afford to waste energy these days, with it being so darned expensive?

So as I'm not really sure what a smart meter could achieve for me, I will continue to ignore the emails and calls. Interestingly, the survey also revealed that the capability of some smart home devices/appliances to 'make smart decisions based on contents' (17%), is the least known feature by those who don't use them. Perhaps as these smart appliances can save us time, hassle and money and prevent unnecessary waste, we as an industry could be doing more to let consumers know about their benefits, don't you agree?

Now... where's my Blu Tak?




Jan Hobbs



This Week's News

VitrA secures second consecutive Designer Kitchens & Bathrooms Award for Bathroom Innovation

V* Darren-Paxford_Designer-Award.jpgitrA Bathrooms has secured another prestigious industry award, this time for Plural, the ground-breaking bathroom range designed in partnership with Terri Pecora. The Designer Kitchen and Bathroom Award for Innovation in Bathroom Product Design is the fourth award for VitrA from Designer Kitchen & Bathroom in recent years, with last year's award received for the Eternity accessories developed with Sebastian Conran.

Darren Paxford, national sales manager for VitrA (pictured) said at the awards ceremony: "I'm delighted to accept this award for the new Plural range - to be judged by such an esteemed panel is very gratifying. "

New British standard states tiling backer boards must replace plywood in the bathroom - Abacus Elements has the solution!

* New-British-Standard-boards.jpgThe latest revision to the British Standard covering wall tiling (www.tiles.org.uk) includes a number of important changes. One states - tiling direct to plywood is no longer recommended for wall tiling; a bespoke tiling backer board should be used.

The removal of plywood from the new Standard, as a recommended substrate for wall tiling, is viewed as necessary due to the wide variance in the quality of product now available on the UK market. A lot of cheaper imported plywoods are not able to provide a "stable and rigid background", as mentioned in the previous Standard.

Cosentino UK supports The Kitchen Education Trust (TKET)

* Cosentino_TKET.jpgCosentino UK tells us it is delighted to be continuing its support for The Kitchen Education Trust (TKET), demonstrating its commitment to promoting talent in the kitchen industry.

For the second year running, Cosentino is providing one of its Elite Studios with a 50% scholarship to send a member of staff on the award-winning foundation degree course in Kitchen Design at Buckinghamshire New University, starting this Autumn.

Solid Core Zenith makes a style statement

* Solid-Core-Zenith.jpgSleek cream furniture combined with a super slimline worktop in an inspiring natural finish give this kitchen designed and supplied by retailer Hitchings & Thomas a timeless, yet forward-thinking look.

The designers chose Zenith worktops by Wilsonart in Pyla, a natural wood effect. Zenith is an ultra slim solid core material with an ultra-black solid core, providing an attractive contrast around edges and for drainer grooves etc. It is easy to work with and can be cut and seamlessly joined on site.

Be bold with blush: Meet the new Illusion from British Ceramic Tile

* Blush.jpgBlush is back and is set to make a big impact in the kitchen and bathroom market. While rose gold and fuchsia have had their time to shine, British Ceramic Tile is embracing the return of the muted millennial pink hue, adding a playful, feminine vibe to homes with the launch of the new Illusion feature tile.

Building on the success of the existing grey Illusion feature floor, British Ceramic Tile has combined a classic, crisp white and dark grey with an on-trend shade of blush to raise its appeal in the style stakes. A confident choice, Illusion blush features a repeating cubic pattern that creates a visually intriguing 3D visual effect, adding depth and perspective to surfaces.

Blanco's charity bake-off success

* Blanco-charity-bake.jpgBlanco UK joined most of the country and hosted a coffee morning in aid of cancer charity, Macmillan. The fun included delicious home-made goodies and competitions, including a 'cake bake-off', 'place the cherry on the cake' and 'guess the length of the sausage roll'.

The event was a huge success and, thanks to donations from the staff who donated their winnings back into the pot and Simon Hart, managing director, who doubled the amount, the company raised a grand total of £500.

Aqata makes a statement with new Ceiling Fix Column

* Aqata.jpgRenowned UK shower enclosure manufacturer, Aqata, has introduced its new Ceiling Fix Column. Interior styling and bathroom design often focuses on the hidden and unobtrusive aspect of fixtures and fittings... not so with Aqata's Ceiling Fix Column. This clever design makes a bold statement and becomes a feature of the showering space.

Indesit reactivates free cake kit promotion

* Indesit-oven-microwave.jpgIndesit has reactivated its partnership with Craft & Crumb, award-winning cake and biscuit kit company, to offer consumers a free cake baking kit with the purchase of selected Indesit ovens and freestanding cookers. The promotion runs until 28th November 2018.

Indesit strives to encourage everyone in the family to help with the household chores, so there's more time for families to spend together doing the things they love.

New Hoover Candy appointment cements Irish market focus

* Hoover-Candy-Irish.jpgHoover Candy Group has appointed Damian Mellet to the position of account director for the brand's built-in offering in Ireland. With experience spanning almost 20 years, Damian brings a detailed understanding of the white goods trade sector.

Damian's new role will see him tasked with strengthening sales and overseeing the brand's distribution of built-in appliances across key accounts in the Irish network.

Hotpoint's Fresh Thinking pop-up café will make us think twice about food waste

* Hotpoint-fresh-thinking.jpgThe Hotpoint Fresh Thinking for Forgotten Food pop-up café, located in East London, opened its doors to consumers recently, serving dishes that have been inspired by the most commonly wasted food in the UK.

Karonia strengthens marketing department

* Karonia_Marketing.jpgKaronia has appointed Tim Gange as marketing assistant. Having recently graduated from Leeds Beckett University, Tim joins with a host of new and innovative ideas that will give fresh impetus to the company's digital marketing channels.

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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

Best Installer finalists announced

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The British Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom & Bathroom Installation has revealed the finalists for the prestigious Best Installer 2018 Award, with the winner set to be announced at the ek&bbusiness Awards ceremony on the 29th November at stunning London venue, The Brewery.

Plumbers' merchants market in the UK worth over £4.2bn

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The plumbers' merchants market was worth an estimated £4.2bn in 2017, representing growth of around 2% from 2016, according to a new report by AMA Research.

Blanco sponsors the 2019 RSA Student Design Awards programme

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After a successful year taking part in the 2018 Royal Society of Arts Student Design Awards, Blanco UK tells us it is proud to be returning to sponsor the Awards which provide students with an invaluable network and a brilliant platform to further their career in design.

Glen Dimplex Home Appliances launches Elite Retailer scheme

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Domestic appliance manufacturer Glen Dimplex Home Appliances has launched a new independent retailer support initiative, as part of its focus on supporting the independent electrical retail channel and increasing its share of the range cooker market.

Boundary Space leading the trend in coloured sanitary bathrooms

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Clients - reports Boundary Space - are moving away from the 'Scandi' monochrome and bleached timber look that has dominated the last few years, seeing that colour is a way for people to express themselves.

Cosentino celebrates outstanding Elite studios with its annual Elite Honours List

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The Cosentino Group has once again celebrated its very best Elite Premium studios in the UK and Ireland.

Hi-Macs helps restore London's emblematic Hoover Building

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IDM Properties has renovated and restored one of the most iconic Art Deco buildings in the English capital city, built in the 1930s for the Hoover Company.

Over 20% growth forecast for UK kitchen & bathroom worktops market over next five years

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According to a new report by AMA Research, there has been good growth in the domestic kitchen and bathroom worktops market in recent years and this is set to continue, with over 20% growth forecast over the next five years.


British Ceramic Tile refreshes retailer Rewards Club

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British Ceramic Tile's reward scheme has been relaunched with a host of exciting offers, promotions and prizes in a move to make the scheme more attractive and beneficial to retail customers.


Standards & guidelines for installers published

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The British Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom & Bathroom Installation has published its Standards & Guidelines (12th Edition).

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