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Owain Harrison is the Country Manager for Novy, an innovative brand well established in Europe who are keen to influence the UK KBB market. Exhibiting for the first time at kbb Birmingham 2018, Novy will join us along with their new range of creative kitchen apppliances. Ahead of the show, we took 5 minutes to catch up with him...
Could you tell us a bit about Novy as a brand?
Founded in 1907, for over 50 years Novy has been a leading manufacturer of advanced extraction technology. In 1973 Novy invented and patented peripheral extraction, and in 1974 the company developed the first dedicated silencer for cooker hoods. Novy also manufactures premium induction hobs and all specialist LED lighting incorporated with its extraction models.
Why have you chosen to exhibit at this year's kbb Birmingham?
I regard kbb as a very important exhibition as it not only enables us at Novy to interact with kitchen specialists, many of whom are already customers, but it also raises key themes in the marketplace that are important to all of our futures.
What trend(s) in our theme would you say Novy aligns with most?
Disruption as Opportunity is the one we align with most. The word 'disruption' has changed from a negative to a positive in business terms and to be changing the status quo is now deemed a good thing. Novy has a history in developing disruptive innovation and we continue to do so.
As a 'disruptor', where do Novy fit in with the current market?
Years ago, the introduction of the induction hob was a disruptor in the market, and now it is common place. The same can be said for ceiling hoods, now an emerging category on its own - and also invented by Novy. As a premium extraction brand, we have expanded on this by the introduction of innovative induction models with integrated downdraft extractors that sit within the actual surface of the hob. These dual purpose appliances are both space-saving and provide greater freedom for kitchen designers when considering the kitchen layout, especially in rooms where overhead extraction is impossible such as those with beamed or vaulted ceilings, or with all glass extensions. We regard disruption as opportunity.
What makes Novy stand out from other competitors?
At Novy, we are building a network of top tier kitchen specialists to present our range of extraction appliances, including our combination models that are delivering some very important and positive disruptive influences, allowing for design adaptation in the changing kitchen development market.
What can you tell us about Novy's most recent appliance - PANORAMA?
The PANORAMA is the first combination induction and extraction appliance of its kind. PANORAMA is a powerful 90cm four-zone induction hob with a fully integrated downdraft extractor situated within the hob itself. With no need for a separate cooker hood above the hob, PANORAMA can be installed almost anywhere within the kitchen layout, enabling greater design freedom.
How would you describe the change in kitchen design in recent years?
At the top of the market the traditional U-shaped enclosed room is in the past, and instead an open plan kitchen that features an island to demarcate cooking and living is apparent. The cook now ideally faces out to the room and the entire space must allow for socialising and entertaining.
In your experience, how has the current economic climate affected the KBB market?
The top tiers of the housing market have seen a plateau and in some cases a reduction in house prices. Historically, when this economic correction has taken place, it has led to homeowners staying put and not selling their biggest asset. It has also resulted in a desire to create an added value to people's homes, providing an opportunity for many premium brands.
What else is fuelling the growing refurbishment market?
Relaxation in planning rules have meant that people are able to extend their homes without having to go through rigorous amounts of red tape. This, combined with the fact that open plan living remains on-trend, has resulted in the fashion for the kitchen to be part of a larger lifestyle space.
Novy are leading the 'Disruption' conversation for kbb Birmingham 2018, the largest and most established kitchen, bedroom and bathroom event in the UK. Register for your ticket and join us at the NEC in Birmingham from 4th-7th March - keep in touch with us on Twitter @kbblive or #futurekbb.