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Contents | NEWS CONTENTS NEWS, COMMENT & OPINION


10 An ideal partnership MDs of Ideal Standard and Ideal Bathrooms on their new collaboration


18 All in a good cause The latest fund-raising activities from around the industry


20 People


A roundup of the movers and shakers – keep up with who’s going where


22 Paul Crow


The Ripples MD outlines his key objectives for the coming year


24 Sharan Johal


Vogue Kitchens’ creative director on our male-oriented industry


27 Malcolm Scott


The KBSA corporate chair with a snapshot of the past year


30 Mark Stephenson PWS’s CEO on the biggest challenges facing businesses in 2020


32 Letters


You give us your views on some of the industry’s biggest issues


TREND PREDICTIONS FOR 2020


We reveal the trends that will be big in the coming year


38 Kitchens Sustainability and bold colours...


41 The Great Outdoors Al fresco cooking is on the rise... 43 Appliances


Energy saving and clever tech... 44 Bathrooms


Saving water and new fi nishes...


48 Retailer View Four retailers give us their predictions


RETAIL


64 Kitchen retailer profi le What challenges will Brexit have in store for Itek Designs in Gibraltar?


68 Shopping Around Our mystery shopper visits Maidenhead, Slough and Staines


70 How’s Business We quiz retailers in Winchester


72 Showroom of the Month How ex-Bathstore franchise Rouse Bathrooms has reinvented itself


January 2020 · kbbreview


Bathroom retailer profi le: Immerse Bathrooms in Warrington pg 60


Survey results: Retailers report on the health of their businesses pg 52


Trends for 2020: Industry experts give us their top tips pgs 38-48


Interview – Coram: MD John Blackburn on the company’s restructure pg 34


I EDITOR’S COMMENT


FORWARD THINKING


f December is traditionally the month for refl ection, then January, in comparison, is the month for planning and implementing changes in order to improve outcomes.


So, with that in mind, the January issue seems like the perfect edition in which to assess the health and confi dence of the independent KBB retail sector. As part of our build-up to the kbb Birmingham show in March, we have conducted an exclusive survey involving more than 300 retailers looking at consumers, business health, marketing and many other key issues affecting them and their business. This, we hope you’ll agree, has brought about some very interesting results.


Three-quarters of those surveyed rated their business as good or excellent


I won’t reveal too much here other than to say that, despite months and months of reports of political and economic uncertainty, the overriding theme of the survey is one of genuine positivity with three-quarters of those surveyed rating their business as good or excellent. A conclusion that kicks off a new year rather nicely. Sticking with the retail theme, we head to Immerse Bathrooms in Warrington. This brand new business is the rather unlikely result of a partnership between a professional Rugby League player and an ex-Olympic sprinter. For the full feature and to fi nd out more about their plans, see pages 60-62. As a complete contrast we also get


the rare opportunity to visit a KBB retailer based in Gibraltar. Despite being overseas, Gibraltar is a British territory and, with a Brexit of some description now a foregone conclusion, we thought the owners of Itek Design – a well-established contract and retail business – could give us an interesting perspective on the situation (pages 64-66). We also get a showroom design ma sterclass from ex-Bathstore


franchisee Claire Algar who has transformed her independent studio – Rouse Bathrooms in Kent – to appeal to its local audience (pages 72-73). Elsewhere in the magazine, we shine a spotlight on the market and design trends that are set to shape the KBB industry in 2020 in our special 10-page feature (pages 38-48). Again, I’ll let you read the full report and make your own assessments but, it’s fair to say that sustainability will be a key driver across all sectors throughout 2020 and beyond. We also hear from John Blackburn, the MD of Coram UK. The business underwent a major restructure almost 12 months ago as part of a European directive from its parent company – Dutch group Coram Sanitary BV. He refl ects on the changes made and what they mean for the business moving forward. For the full interview, see page 34. Your feedback on these – and any other industry-related – issues is, as always, welcome


Rebecca Nottingham, editor rebecca@kbbreview.com


kbbreview.com


Follow @kbbreview on Twitter for news and live updates from events


Keep up to date with trends and news and follow @kbbreview on Instagram


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