Two heads are better than one when to comes to the world of design generally and, in the contract kitchen industry, an example of two brilliant heads is seen in the relationship between BKNC and Keller Kitchens.
Keller is well known for offering the widest range of colours (1950 NCS) and finishes in the kitchen furniture market – as well as developing different cabinet sizes and handles. The company was the first carbon neutral kitchen manufacturer in the market (five years and counting). BKNC is a family-run business, with showrooms in The Business Design Centre in Islington, and Wrexham. The team has a wealth of experience in the supply and installation of high-quality kitchens in the contract market.
Here Harry Ruler, Deputy MD of BKNC explains how the companies work together to supply developers with the very best options in kitchen design today.
What is about Keller that makes your contract offering so successful?
In short, we have the option to inject design flair into our kitchen schemes due to the flexibility of the Keller portfolios. We want to stand out from others and Keller, with Dutch design and quality at the core of their business, lets us do that. For example, there are 1950 NCS colours, an array of finishes, various cabinet sizes, and handle ranges; most importantly, Keller offers a bespoke service. Where we may want to tweak a finish, or design a novel handle, the team in Holland can accommodate us. We design kitchens for the one-off large residential property, the large-scale development, the luxury holiday property market, as well as the discerning end-user. Keller delivers on time, and on budget; customisation costs no more. A key factor is the impressive factory in Holland – the company designs, manufactures and delivers so we are assured of good communication and service.
Can you mention a couple of recent projects you have worked on together?
We have just designed and supplied kitchens for large-scale developments in Birmingham and London; we were selected due to our design credentials and ability to provide something a bit different without a huge price tag. We were also selected by a developer in the North West of England who builds large residential properties as well as luxury holiday-lets. Here, Keller’s design flair came in as we have supplied colourful blue and yellow schemes, for example with quirky, exclusive details. The kitchen is always a big selling point and the fantastic kitchens take pride of place in the developer’s sales collateral.
Are Keller’s well known sustainability credentials important today?
More and more! Maybe four years ago, we didn’t really get asked by developers and end-users. But now, is THE most important factor in our quest to win the best contracts and it is Keller’s biggest USP for us. Holland was away ahead of us and Keller has been a carbon neutral manufacturer since 2017 – and on the way to being carbon negative! It’s not only in kitchen manufacture and production that Keller excels; there are many initiatives in place throughout the whole organisation and they are well documented so we can pass on the information to our customers.
The most popular Keller door?
Nottingham Groove 10 – a traditional kitchen style finished in real veneer with grooves spaced 10cm apart. As the finish is a natural veneer it can be stained in 9 colours or lacquered in 1,950 colours. The vast array of colour options enables a modern twist to be applied to a kitchen that would otherwise be considered traditional. This shows the prevalence of texture and natural materials which is a growing trend.
What trends are you seeing in the kitchen market generally?
We are in a good position to see up and coming trends as we work with developers and end users who want something different. 80% of the market still asks for white, grey, handleless kitchens perhaps! But we, with Keller’s flexibility, are able to offer the very best to the other 20% too as the kitchen becomes a living space! Textures, stains, unusual sized cabinetry, touch control, storage, ring-pull handles, lighting, open box and media units – personalised where necessary. So not only can we answer the trends, we make them. And most importantly, these individual touches come within our original budgets as Keller has the facility to accommodate.