Hot Plate Products is a new UK housewares brand building and distribution company that launched on January 1. Already been appointed as exclusive UK distributors for Bialetti, Universal Expert by Sebastian Conran and Fusionbrands, it hopes to add a further two brands to its portfolio in the next two months.
Managing director James Gray founded the firm after spending a number of years working for Joseph Joseph. “I saw a gap in the market in that some fantastic brands have developed in housewares over the last few years but many distribution companies don’t represent brands, they simply trade products without considering the value that brand equity brings,” he said. “The company ethos is to work with a small number of brands that don’t cannibalise each other and offer all retailers the opportunity to range a full product solution.”
James Gray added: “Bialetti is a great example of what we represent. Not many retailers are aware of the fact that there is a lot more to Bialetti that two stove top coffee pots. The brand has over 70,00 SKU’s and can provide a full coffee solution that includes cups, cafetieres, accessories and of course the iconic stove tops. The brand is synonymous with coffee and evidence tells us that people buy into brands they recognise and that also carry authority.”
He continued: “For me, it’s critical that you put the customer – our retail partners – at the heart of our business which is why I believe so strongly in dialogue. The simple fact is we won’t always get it right but we will listen to what people say. We’ve had a number of customers in the independent sector asking us to look at the pack sizes; we did this and will make changes within two weeks.”
Hot Plate Products will be holding all products in the UK. It offers a free planogramming service, the ability for retailers to order and monitor their accounts online or the option to order through a full UK agent network.
Hot Plate Products will be launching a new website and holding an open event in London next month.