again, 2018 is going to be another record-breaking year and that’s from working very closely with the CIH group and Euronics. With those dealers that we work with on a day-to-day basis and our sales team out on the road speaking to those dealers, it ensures that Blomberg is an exclusive brand and it’s at the forefront of what we do with our partnership with them. Leisure is doing well, too; it’s


in a different place – with range cookers it’s a very tough climate and consumers are investing in built-in propositions and we’re doing very well in built-in. Range cooking is very niche but we’re still maintaining our number two share within the market.

Q: What about future trends? KS: For 2019, we’re looking to make minimal changes in the range, but we are introducing more connected appliances. We’ve just brought out Europe’s first autodose connected dishwasher and we’re looking at being more connected in the Beko range, so that gives us new innovation to be communicating to consumers. In Q3, we’re introducing a new washing machine with key technology called AquaTech – which we launched at IFA in 2018. However, in 2020, there’s

potentially going to be a big overhaul in energy labelling for products, so we’re not expecting to introduce too many changes in 2019 because 2020 will be a big year of potential changes and it’s all about maintaining the business that we have.

Q: Beko recently introduced an SDA offering – what initiated this introduction? KS: There was an opportunity to try something new and SDA was a natural fit, rather than deviating too much from what our range was. SDA helps complement our MDA proposition. We’ve got a great base of loyal Beko consumers who love to have SDA products in their homes.

Q: How has this sector

performed and have the results met expectations? KS: SDA for us is all about learning what new opportunities this brings and how we move to be a true home appliance brand rather than just an MDA player. It’s all about giving consumers a little bit extra and for us SDA was really about bringing new technologies on board. Our new ranges, like our bean-to-cup coffee machines, have been awarded a Which? award and so the industry is recognising that we are becoming a credible player in this space. And we’re taking every step as it comes; we are learning along the way as it’s new business for us, but I’d say that the last 18 months have been very successful and I think 2019 will again be even bigger and better. We’re looking at a few new

product introductions in the second half of the year – a key one will be a new breakfast set, which is uniquely designed by us and we hope it will be the next big thing in SDA. It will be innovative, with key design features and it will be right on trend and with a range of different colours to suit any kitchen. It’s all about trading with what we have and bringing more premium products to the market next year; what we’re finding is that there’s a great consumer need. It’s a really exciting time with all the technological changes across the industry, which is why we want to focus on connectivity, but Beko remains to be popular and we have to continue providing our customers with the high quality appliances they are used to.

A look at the high street

“The retail landscape is very tough and I think the businesses that will do well are the ones that will be consumer-centric, that understand consumers in a lot of detail, and that’s where I think the independent is at its best. They have a very close relationship with their local customers and they’ve built that relationship over time. That’s where I think they’ve got the knowledge and service and this can be unbeatable against the traditional bigger retailers. If you really understand your consumers and you know what their desires and wants are and how you can work with them, you will be winning. I’m not saying that it’s going to be easy this year, but it’s those retailers that will go above and beyond to help consumers stand a greater chance of survival in the tough retail climate.

“We’ve got a very strong desire to make sure we are supporting the independant sector as much as possible; we’ve got a dedicated training team that goes out on a regular basis to help store colleagues understand our brand and products, the key selling points and what the consumer needs at the moment. We are putting a lot of investment in this area to make sure our brands go from strength to strength. The independant sector has got the assurance that they’ve got our backing to help them out in this very tough climate.”

If you really understand your customers and know what their desires and wants are, you will be winning

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