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Round-up | NEWS


Middleby Corporation acquires Novy


AMERICAN FOOD prep and food service specialist Middleby Corporation has announced the acquisition of Novy, the Belgian induction and extraction specialist.


According to a statement, the acquisition follows a long consultation period where Novy‘s shareholders, Sofindev, BNP Paribas, Korys and the Lannoy family, who founded the business, have been in consultation to actively seek a new investment partner. The deal is said to be part of Novy’s global expansion strategy which will see it join Middleby’s portfolio of brands which includes Aga, Rangemaster, La Cornue and Viking. Speaking about the acquisition


Carlos Wanzeele, CEO, Novy said: “Over the years, Novy has evolved into a highly-respected brand thanks to industry-leading innovation, superior product quality and dedicated personal service. We


have


experienced greater demand as customers have chosen our brand, which has led to increased momentum. Our international presence has also grown significantly in recent years, including in the UK and Ireland. “For Novy, this new partnership provides many opportunities in terms of product development and also access to a broader international sales network. Because of the decentralised way Middleby operates its companies, our customers and other stakeholders


should experience little to no change in their daily interactions.” Tim FitzGerald, CEO, Middleby added: “We look for well-known and highly-respected brands with industry- leading technology for Middleby. Novy is recognised for its market leading innovations and product designs, complementing our expanding portfolio of premium residential brands.


Is the skills shortage over as 18% of Brits seek a trade career?


SINCE THE start of the pandemic, almost one-in-five British people (18%) have sought a new career in the trades, according to Powered Now.


The demand for tradespeople has been boosted by the ongoing boom in the home-improvement market. Research by Powered Now, a field service management software company that specialises in the trades, found that 15% of tradespeople saw client demand increase post- Covid to its highest level ever. That 18% of Brits have either started to work within in the trades as a whole new career path or as way to pick up additional work – and 15% of them are female.


Fears over the future has been a motivating factor for many people within the trades. Powered Now found that 16% of tradespeople agree that sequential waves of Covid had made them more motivated to work. The KBB and construction industries have been hit by a skills shortage for many years, from kitchen fitters, to plumbers and bathroom installers. Damian Walters, chief executive of The British Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom and Bathroom Installation (BiKBBI), has expressed concern that, if there is an influx of people joining trades, in order to make a quick quid out of the pandemic, it may affect the quality of tradespeople.


He said: “What is clear is that people August 2021 ·


The business is well-positioned in the built-in cooking segment of the residential market, a category which is growing globally and we believe there are exciting opportunities to realise synergies with our existing residential brands.”


Kbbreview has contacted Novy for further clarification on how the deal will affect its UK operation.


Dornbracht commits to price freeze until 2022


DORNBRACHT HAS committed to freezing the prices of its fittings and accessories for bathroom, spa and kitchen until next year. The high-end manufacturer says it has seen many market players increase their prices, but it has decided to buck that trend in the short term in order to provide planning security for its retail and trade partners. According to Dornbracht, there have been regular reports of price increases in the commodities market, as well as the availability of building materials and the impact this is having. Those price increases often cause considerable additional expense for retail and trade customers and so Dornbracht has pledged not to pass on any increases in commodity prices over the next 12 months.


are valuing their homes more now than ever and, as such, perhaps the perceived value in those undertaking work is increasing too. This all sounds great, doesn’t it? More people interested in our industry, more people attracted to it, that decreases the skills gap, right? Maybe, but let’s not forget the risk.


“The double-glazing industry of the Eighties, and the renewable energy industry more recently, are two


examples of a sudden spike of interest in an industry. The fact is opportunists will be attracted like moths to a flame. “Yes, there are some great opportunities for attracting genuine talent, but the inevitable influx of opportunists could be as damaging to the KBB industry, as it was to double glazing and indeed solar PV. Interest in the sector is good, but only if it’s managed, underpinned by education and covered by compliance.”


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