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KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
31st October 2020


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

International News

Luxury steel framing defines Caple's new WF1550 freestanding wine cabinet

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Caple has created a new freestanding wine cabinet, the WF1550, with a thick stainless-steel frame for a more luxurious finish.

Increased hygiene in the kitchen with Blanco's Solenta-S tap

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Blanco UK has redefined sensor technology to make life in the kitchen cleaner and easier. In these days of heightened awareness of the need for super clean environments in kitchens, demand for touchless products has soared.

Good headset hygiene helps make kitchen and bathroom showrooms COVID safe

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Providing peace of mind and reassurance to customers that the showroom experience is Covid-safe will be a huge part of helping restore consumer confidence in the weeks and months ahead.

Add pizazz to walls and floors with new Patterned Tiles from Verona

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Verona has extended its popular Patterned Tiles collection introducing two new ceramic tile designs, which are guaranteed to deliver character and charm to any home.

Design that moves: the next125 trolley

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The new next125 trolley offers timelessly elegant design, in combination with multifunctionality and mobility.

Triton introduces essential handwash units

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The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for more rigorous hygiene processes and frequent handwashing in the workplace, as well as in the home. 

New distribution deal adds Abode sinks & taps to PJH product

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PJH has agreed a distribution deal with Abode, one of the UK's leading designers and manufacturers of kitchen sinks and taps, and a brand renowned for its award-winning innovative product designs and outstanding product quality.

Welcome to the


John and I made the decision to temporarily reduce the frequency of KBzine - this industry's oldest e-zine - early on in the pandemic because it was clear that the sector was going to be badly hit by the measures being taken to keep the virus at bay. My normally overflowing mailbox became quite sparse and we started to receive large numbers of broadcast bounce-backs as more people became furloughed.

At the opposite end of the scale, work on Cleanzine - our e-zine which we started broadcasting when Richard and Debbie Schwarz launched KBzine as part of a joint portfolio - got silly. Cleaning became recognised, globally, as one of the most important industries in the world and we could have produced a bulging issue twice daily, as the sector waded in to produce extra supplies of PPE, sanitisers, foggers and the like and train cleaners in different disciplines to ensure that our facilities and people who had to go out to work, were as safe as possible. As a result, John and I didn't take our two-week annual break and I think it was this, together with a multitude of phone calls from cleaning industry colleagues throughout the day and sometimes at weekends, along with caring for my mother who has advanced dementia, which meant that KBzine was put on the back burner for longer than it should have been. It wasn't planned; it was more a case of running out of time each day and falling into my bed exhausted - but determined to produce an issue the following day. Best laid plans eh?

I last wrote a KBzine leader on 1st September fully expecting to follow up with another on 1st October, which I just couldn't get around to finishing - despite having plenty to write about. John and I even discussed, just in passing, the possibility of giving up. I've absent-mindedly mulled it over but hadn't given it much thought because I've been so frazzled.

Well hey - I love this industry and John does too! So here we are; we're staying - and - while we're not yet going to revert to weekly broadcasts, we're not going to leave it quite as long before the next one.

So how are you doing? I know some in the sector are launching new products and ranges, but how are you finding business? What are you doing to overcome the problems the pandemic has put in your way? I really would like to know, so please do get in touch.


Jan Hobbs



This Week's News

Trailblazer receives industry support

* BIKBBI-Trailblazer.jpgSeptember saw British Institute of KBB Installation CEO Damian Walters warn the industry to "act now to avoid a catastrophe" as he called upon the sector to unite on the subject of Apprenticeships.

VitrA meets Covid challenge

* VitrA-V-Care.jpgOxfordshire based VitrA Bathrooms is part of one of Turkey's most prominent industrial groups.

Lunar Loo Space Toilet: From the virtual Duravit lab straight into space!

* Luna-Loo.jpgDeveloping a toilet that can work in a weightless environment and on the moon, sounds like quite a tricky task!

Go Glam Chic with Keller

Keller-Go-Glam.jpgNew from Keller is the Glam Chic flexible design which oozes class and is reminiscent of a luxury hotel with sophisticated elements applied in a modern way for the home.

BMA industry conference to focus on sustainability

* BMA-CONFERENCE-SUSTAINABILITY.jpgThe Bathroom Manufacturers Association Industry Conference has been rearranged to now take place on 8th June 2021, at Carden Park, Cheshire and focus on the topic of 'sustainability in the sector.'

Aqualisa brassware offering grows....

* Aqualisa-Main-pic.jpgFollowing hard on the heels of launching an extended brassware range shower manufacturer Aqualisa has introduced two more ranges of brassware under the new Downtown and Central branding.

KBSA and Quooker consumer offer reaches 1.2 million readers

KBSA-promo.jpgThe Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom Specialists Association and corporate member Quooker have released a consumer insert as part of the KBSA's £250,000 support package for kitchen retailers, which will reach more than 1.2 million readers.

Königstone in conversation with Lima Kitchens

* Konigstone-Lima-Kitchens.jpgKönigstone is a go-to brand for fantastic worktop surfaces in quartz, granite, marble and semi-precious materials and the team rightly prides itself on great, successful relationships with customers and the resultant projects are testament to these.

New finish added to Crosswater's Belgravia

* New-finish.jpgPerfect for adding an elegant touch to bathrooms, the new Unlacquered Brass finish offers a classic aesthetic with a nod to contemporary style, and joins two existing finishes - Chrome and Nickel - to complete this much-loved traditional range.

Utopia introduces new luxury soft touch finish

* Bella-Blush.jpgAs part of its major product launch for Summer 2020, Utopia has introduced a highly innovative new super matt, soft touch foil finish, available in four of the newly launched colours - Blush, Sea Green, Azure Blue and Storm Grey.

AKW's new bidet takes intimate care to the next level

* AKW-Bidet.jpgOne of the things most people take for granted and think little about is using the toilet. However, for some people, this seemingly simple procedure can become very challenging. That is why AKW, one of the UK's leading providers of accessibility solutions, has launched its new AKW Bidet.

Advertisement - Fabrication Partner Sought

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Leading worktop and surface specialist, Königstone, is seeking a new fabrication partner in the North West of UK to supplement the company's healthy growth and expansion.

This is following on from the success of Königstone's debut presence at KBB 2020 which generated much excitement from visitors to the show.

Königstone supplies an impressive range of supreme quality kitchen surfaces with both a natural stone and elegant Quartz range. Recent developments include the innovative new Königsink and breath-taking portfolio of semi-precious materials for use in unique kitchen features.

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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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

BiKBBI and BMA cement international relationships

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The British Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom & Bathroom Installation and the Bathroom Manufacturers Association have partnered with the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA), the North American authority on all things residential kitchens and bathrooms, on its NKBA Global Connect Alliance Programme.

Vast majority of Brits have no idea how much water they use each day

This bank holiday as record numbers of people stayed at home, Water UK and water efficiency expert Waterwise joined forces to call for more to be done to educate the public about their water use.

A welcome statement and great picture from the BiKBBI!

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We're back!

Following the temporary closure of our head office operation in March, and in response to the national Coronavirus lockdown, we have managed to continue the delivery of our service remotely.

KBSA supports Covid-19 research project for kitchen and bathroom industry

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The Kitchen Bathroom Bedroom Specialists Association is supporting a research project to assess and document the recovery of the kitchen and bathroom industry in terms of market demand and opportunities as lockdown restrictions are lifted.

Double win for RAK Ceramics at first virtual BKU Awards

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It may not have been possible to gather in numbers, but the team at RAK Ceramics certainly had much to celebrate at a socially distanced viewing of BKU Awards 2020, held online for the first time. The champagne was flying when RAK Ceramics was declared the winner of not one but two prestigious industry awards, namely Best Tiling Brand and Best Sanitaryware Brand.

Strong appetite for bathroom refurbishment, poll shows

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Nearly a third of UK adults are likely to undertake a partial or full bathroom refurbishment in the next 12 months, a poll has revealed.

Virtual workshop confirms opportunities for bathroom industry to benefit from renovation wave

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A virtual workshop hosted by the Unified Water Label and its Italian partners was a resounding success, with more than 70 visitors from across the UK and Europe attending to discuss the commercial benefits of the UWL.

The Used Kitchen Company sets another milestone in UK recycling

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The Used Kitchen Company, the pioneer of kitchen recycling and its champion since 2005, has taken its groundbreaking 'Kitchen Passports' eco-initiative to the next level, as it sets another milestone for UK recycling and waste control.

BMA Elects John Robinson as president

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Members of the Bathroom Manufacturers Association have elected John Robinson as President for the next two years. John, who is business director of Ideal Standard, takes over from Roca's Alan Dodds.

LochAnna Kitchens celebrates 100,000th sale as it gets back to business

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The Coronavirus has adversely affected every part of the KBB industry, leaving every brand, manufacturer, dealer and installer, worried and wondering. Like most businesses, LochAnna Kitchens closed its doors at the end of March, not knowing when the business would reopen.

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