Dutch catering equipment giant moves into UK market

A selection of Hendi’s most popular lines was on show at the firm’s UK division launch event this week.

Dutch-headquartered Hendi Food Service Equipment has opened up a UK division based in Lancaster.

To be run as a separate business by the management team of Sous Vide Tools, Hendi UK can offer over 4,000 product lines including professional coffee machines, fryers, buffet equipment, electrical and gas appliances, small kitchen appliances, grills, kitchenware, tableware, porcelain and cutlery.

During this week’s launch event at the Dutch Embassy in London, MD Alex Shannon commented: “Over 500 lines will be stocked in the UK from day one and they will be available for next day service if ordered before 3pm.”

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He further detailed that all other lines will have a 3-5 day delivery time from the Netherlands, or in urgent cases a drop ship service is available to deliver equipment straight to site.

The UK division currently has access to over 9,000ft2 of warehousing space, which it reports is already nearly full, with expanded premises under consideration shortly.

Shannon underlined that Hendi UK will only be selling through distributors and has already welcomed 50 of them to a preview event which he reported garnered “a phenomenal level of interest”. He detailed that initially the firm will be looking to work with a maximum of 100 distributors, and then build up its business slowly.

To further its distributor network ambitions, Hendi UK has already signed up as supplier within the ENSE buying consortium.

Business development director Ben Aird said: “We will shake up the UK market and make sure that we are able to really work with distributors, growing that distributor base as the need for Hendi products grows across the UK.

“All products are HACCP and CE compliant and we are able to offer great pricing strategy as well as demonstrations and full training on any products.”

This includes making use of the two development chefs within the existing staff of Sous Vide Tools, and the firm’s Lancaster training facility. Furthermore, Shannon revealed that Hendi UK will be opening a showroom and development kitchen in central London in around a month’s time so that distributors and end users can see the products up close.

He also detailed that Hendi has been working with Brakes exclusively for 18 months prior. “Off the back of that we had a lot of enquiries from distributors, so we took the decision to open it up. About 12 months ago we realised there was a real opportunity to come into the marketplace with quality well priced products.

“A lot of companies either offer heavy catering equipment or light sundries. But we are probably the first company to come to market and offer everything. We are offering something completely different that the UK marketplace hasn’t had for a long time.”

Aird then added: “Hendi is an alternative to some established suppliers in the UK marketplace; we will fill a gap and we will provide innovative products that are more efficient than the current market. That will be the key to Hendi’s success in the UK.

“We have a wealth of experience within the UK marketplace from the team that is in place with Hendi UK. We have been working with an established dealer network for a period of time already and we are able to support our customer base from day one.”

Hendi designs all of its products at its Rhenen head office and then uses manufacturing facilities around the world to produce its appliances to what it says are strict European guidelines. The firm reported its own staff oversee the manufacturing processes and carry out quality inspections.

With an annual turnover in excess of £125m per annum Hendi already has a significant presence across mainland Europe including the Netherlands, Austria, Poland, Romania, Germany, France and Italy as well as Central and Eastern Europe countries such as Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan and the Baltic states.

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