2013 review: Third quarter (Jul-Sep)

As the summer began, Niccola-Boyd Stevenson took up her post as the new chair of the FCSI’s UK and Ireland chapter, promising to increase the recognition of the organisation and ensure it is able to influence industry policy as much as possible.

“I want the society to give back more to the members,” she says. “I want communication to be improved upon because the Executive, for example, does an awful lot of good work and sometimes the members don’t get to hear about it.”

Nisbets opened its largest store to date in Leeds, offering 3,000 products for caterers to take away on the spot, and Lincat extended its warranty to two-years onsite parts and labour with immediate effect. Financial documents, meanwhile, revealed that Direct Catering Supplies’ debts totalled almost £253,000, with 60% o that figure owed to trade creditors.

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Soaring temperatures in the UK led to ice machine manufacturers reporting a 30% rise in monthly sales as operators look to either add capacity to their fleet or replace ageing systems that have failed in the heat. But any concerns that stocks might run short are dismissed by the major suppliers, who insist there is enough inventory in place to satisfy demand.

Victor Manufacturing upgrades its factory with two new press brake machines, Comenda revealed it will attach energy panels to its new A3 machines and catering equipment spares firm CCS restructured its sales team by adding further technical expertise to the department and strengthening the refrigeration part of its business.

Elsewhere, Lockhart launched an expanded range of own-brand products in a bid to claim a greater share of the regional independent market.

There was plenty happening in the distributor market during September, with several names making key strategic announcements.

Chiller Box carried out a rebrand designed to reflect the maturity of the business, ABM Catering for Leisure unveiled an Electrolux demo kitchen at its showroom in Cardiff and Safeguard Group launched a dedicated website just for t he sale of Olis cooking equipment. Not everybody had reason to be cheerful, however.

Mainland Catering Equipment in Lancashire was left cursing its luck after thieves smashed their way into its warehouse and made off with £11,000 worth of kit, while liquidation proceedings got underway at Truscott Catering Equipment and Commercial Kitchen & Bar Consultants.

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