Swanwick Foodservice Equipment (SFE) has become one of only two exclusive dealerships worldwide providing Italian cooking equipment manufacturer Icos Professional’s products.
The agreement offers a pathway for the Bristol-based dealer to continue offering steam cooking equipment into the UK food production sectors and for export to overseas marketplaces.
SFE (formerly Swanwick Catering Equipment) has a long-established history of working with European and North American brands for the domestic and overseas markets. Primarily working with key global brands such as Electrolux, Ali Group and Middleby, the exclusive distributor partnership with Icos Professional signals an opportunity to gain further traction in the seafood, food processing and specialist food production sectors.
Having worked with Icos Professional for over 7 years, SFE wanted to develop the relationship further and cement the Italian manufacturer as one of the key brands for large capacity kettles and braising equipment in the UK.
The distributor’s international sales director Howard Swanwick said: “It’s been a very successful synergy between ourselves and Icos. The broad portfolio of equipment allows us to offer a very flexible solution for our clients. The range of equipment is astonishingly reliable, by anyone’s standards.”
He continued: “Over the last few years we have seen the UK marketplace flooded with low-quality brands and low-priced imports. It is extremely encouraging to have worked with Icos for a long time now, and to have a level of trust in their quality, workmanship and experience. We knew Icos manufactured products under licence for several of the large European brands, which was an encouraging testament to their products and business ethos. We decided to start working directly with them, and have been continuously impressed with the brand.”
SFE has worked with Icos Professional products in some of the busiest commercial kitchens in the UK, including Lions Prep, The Akshaya Patra Foundation UK and Charlie Bighams.
Founded in 1983, Icos Professional was one of the first Italian brands to manufacture commercial foodservice equipment. With over 200 different incarnations of boiling pans, bratt pans and universal cookers, Icos manufactures up to 500-litre capacity pans in gas, electric and direct steam. A range of optional features allow the pans to be prepared for high stress environments such as shellfish and seafood kitchens.
SFE plans to establish a wholesale partnership with other selected dealers in the UK, at the same time as developing its own offering with existing and new clients.
For installation, commissioning and service SFE has been working with national service company Tec Line, to ensure equipment is installed to the manufacturer’s standards.
When asked about Brexit and the future UKCA challenges, Swanwick continued: “Obviously it was disappointing to disconnect from our European partners in such a draconian way; we have been working closely with Icos on the matter of UKCA certification. It was a huge challenge to embrace the new requirements of UKCA and UKNI, however I’m very happy to announce we will be able to continue to offer the brand to our specialist market segments and with our B2B partners.
“It’s a very exciting time for us moving into 2022 and beyond. With Icos Professional now firmly in our portfolio, we feel we have a unique position within the market and look forward to further developing the strategic relationship with Icos Professional.”
SFE plans to open dedicated European offices to be able to function more efficiently in the post-Brexit era, while developing opportunities in the domestic marketplace with the UK clients and a preferred dealer network.