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NEWS | Round-up


Samsung ramps up support for kitchen retailers with webinars


SAMSUNG HAS introduced a programme of online webinars to help support its kitchen retailers while they are closed during the current lockdown restrictions. The new online engagement programme consists of a series of independent webinars that showcase Samsung’s latest products.


Samsung has been working closely with kitchen retailers to help them during the period they are closed and the new webinars allow them to explore the latest ranges of kitchen appliances and receive expert advice. These are scheduled to continue over the coming months.


This, the company said, helps to


provide retailers with the tools they need to drive online engagement and boost sales.


to


Samsung is using the new webinars showcase


its premium, built-in


Infinite Line products. Presenters provide a full run-down of all products with a series of practical demos, backed up with videos showcasing


important features and also providing cookery demonstrations to showcase new technology, such as the steam capabilities of its Infinite Line Oven, or to bring to life the features of its Combi Hob. The company is also providing a Digital Asset Pack for the Infinite Line that retailers will be able to upload to their websites. Jonathan Hartley, channel manager


for kitchen retail and B2B at Samsung UK, said: “We know that the demand for digital engagement has never been greater and we want to help retailers provide the best experience possible to customers. Digital experiences will continue to be a critical element of the consumer purchasing journey, so we believe that our online engagement programme helps to equip businesses


with essential skills and tools to help them navigate through closed showrooms, but also support their operations in the future.” Retailers


can sales training, access additional assets and product


information through dedicated portals, including the Samsung Academy, Samsung Marketing Suite and Samsung Rewards.


Strong Q4 for Whirlpool helps boost 2020 profits


Thomas Crapper to distribute high-end Italian brand Sbordoni


THOMAS CRAPPER has been appointed as exclusive distributor of Italian bathroom brand Sbordoni.


Both companies are aimed at style-focused customers in the luxury sector. Sbordoni has a variety of classically designed collections, such as double console basins, washstands and high- and low-level toilets.


Thomas Crapper said the Sbordoni brand was a natural addition to its portfolio. Thomas Crapper managing director Paul Dwyer, said: “Our distribution agreement with Sbordoni represents a superb opportunity for Thomas Crapper and our retail partners. Sbordoni has been in the UK for over 25 years and is well-known in the architect and designer community, although it’s probably fair to say that recently it hasn’t had the exposure in independent showrooms that it deserves. “Sbordoni started in Italy in 1910 and has maintained a high degree of authenticity in its product offering. We intend to support the independent retail network in the same way we currently do with Thomas Crapper, giving differential buying terms and an area of exclusivity to dealers who invest in displays. We have areas available for new retailers who want to sell high-quality products with excellent levels of customer service. We know the products will prove popular with consumers and our retail partners can sell them with confidence knowing the products are manufactured to the same standards as Thomas Crapper.”


10


WHIRLPOOL HAS reported a strong 2020 Q4, boosting full-year profits by 25% on net sales down 4.7% at $19.5 billion (£14.2bn). Despite what chairman Marc Bitzer described as “a challenging environ- ment”, Whirlpool net sales for Q4 of 2020 were up 7.7% year on year to $5.8bn, while profits (EBIT) leapt by 68.9% to $657 million. Earnings per diluted share (GAAP) up 72% to $7.77. For the full year, profits (EBIT) were up by 25% to $1.77bn on net sales down 4.7% at $19.5bn. Earnings per diluted share (GAAP) were down 7.5% over 2019 at $17.07. Whirlpool Corporation attributes its strong final quarter to “decisive early actions to sustain operating margins and protect liquidity”. The company said it expected to see Covid-related supply chain problems resolved by the end of Q2 this year. Said Marc Bitzer, chairman and chief executive of Whirlpool Corporation: “Despite a challenging environment in 2020, we continued to deliver against our long-term strategy and reported our third consecutive year of record ongoing earnings per share.


“Into 2021, we continue to see signs of economic recovery and remain


· March 2021


well-positioned to drive shareholder value over the long term.”


Chief financial officer Jim Peters added: “We ended 2020 in a position of strength due to the early, decisive actions we took to sustain operating margins and protect liquidity. “We significantly strengthened our balance sheet and continued to return cash to shareholders, while delivering record ongoing earnings per share, ongoing EBIT margins and free cash flow. Looking ahead, we are confident that we will continue to deliver on our long-term financial goals.”


Whirlpool also said it achieved a record full-year ongoing EBIT margin of 9.1%, up 220 basis points, thanks to strong “go-to-market” initiatives and a $500m cost-saving programme and expected


to see strong demand


sustained throughout 2021”. • Whirlpool UK Appliances has won the top employer accolade for the fourth consecutive year from the Top Employers Institute. It also recognised Whirlpool EMEA as Top Employer Europe, with certification in the UK, France, Italy, Poland and Russia.


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