Heavy equipment is at the heart of commercial kitchens, be it in the form of cooking equipment, refrigerators, warewashers or more. The winner of the Catering Insight Awards supplier heavy equipment category, sponsored by Commercial Kitchen, will be whichever company is judged to have produced the most innovative heavy duty appliances for sale through the distributor channel over the past year.
Therefore the contenders are:
Charvet has made further investment this year in strengthening support for partner distributors and reinforcing its 100% indirect sales model, including additional technical back-up and training and dedicated CAD resources. The company has also moved to fill gaps in the market, which has led to the launch of an affordable six-burner range under its Charvet One brand and the creation of a multizone induction unit. Combining four independent induction hobs set under a one-piece glass top, the hobs can be operated alone or ‘sequentially regulated’ for maximum flexibility.
Electrolux’s green&clean rack type dishwasher hit the market this year and it was supported by a raft of incisive sales materials to help dealers maximise business. This included cost and energy-saving calculators, giving distributors a transparent and tangible method of demonstrating the machines’ bottom line impact. The delivery of extensive distributor training sessions at Electrolux’s Centre of Excellence provided dealers with further technical understanding, while a £6m investment in new product development also led to new cooking and refrigeration equipment being released.
The release of the new Evolution Minirack range and RX series of rack conveyors, combined with the addition of integral drain pumps on ice makers, reflects Maidaid’s commitment to listening to distributors and responding to the energy efficiency demands of the market. Monthly dealer sales and technical training has also been supported by an improved next-day delivery service and additional marketing collateral, including a special operational training manual, which is now on its second reprint, and ice machine hygiene awareness labels to prevent the contamination of ice.
Ongoing investment in centralised production processes has boosted the productivity and efficiency of MKN’s operations, improving the service level for distributors deploying its equipment and reducing delivery times. Specialist dealer training and workshops have been carried out at its UK headquarters to improve partner knowledge and educate the market on new innovations within its portfolio, including its FlexiCombi steamer. This appliance combines two cooking chambers within a single unit to deliver high levels of efficiency and ergonomics for commercial kitchens.
A renewed focus on the UK market has seen Retigo widen its distribution network, enhance dealer resources and appoint dedicated service partners over the past 12 months. It has also increased its spare parts availability to its highest level ever for the UK market and stepped up partner engagement by running regular dealer meetings and training sessions. This has all been underpinned by the roll-out of its fifth generation of Vision combi ovens, which comprises six product sizes with improved humidity control and steam generation.