Welcome to Influencers, our annual series that speaks with the heads of retailers, suppliers and industry bodies to find out what is happening in appliances and electronics and how different companies are shaping its future.

Home Appliances is the distributor of Euromaid, Fagor, ARC, IAG and Elica, amongst other brands. Darren Field is the national brand manager and he says Home Appliances’ acquisition schedule has made for a strong year so far.

People exploring new cooking methods: Darren Field.
People exploring new cooking methods: Darren Field.

How has the first half of 2014 been for your business?

2014 has been a very good year for Home Appliances. We have had the launch of our new Euromaid 540 upright range, a new range of 60-centimetre uprights, including Induction double ovens, and, along with new rangehoods, it has helped us to a good start.

We have also acquired Think Appliances and, more recently, purchased the Tecma Lemair group.

This has proven to be a very busy and strong start to 2014.

What are your predictions for the second half of the year?

We anticipate a good second half of the year as we are about to launch a whole new Euromaid 60-centimetre built-in cooking range, along with a new exciting 90-centimetre upright range. We will also be reintroducing the first product Euromaid brought to the market in 1994, which was a mini benchtop oven with a 2-burner cooktop: the new and improved MC130T in stainless steel (the old model was MC110T).

What opportunities do you see for the electrical retailing industry?

With the continuing success of cooking shows in Australia, such as MasterChef and My Kitchen Rules, I see that people are being introduced to different methods of cooking. It is only recently that the general public and household cook has been exposed to products such as blast chillers and thermo mixers; products that have been used in the commercial kitchens for years to reduce and improve cooking results. I see huge potential in these product categories and see it as the next big in new domestic appliances.

What threats are currently present in the industry?

The current and ongoing threat we see in the retail industry is that of more online business entering our markets from overseas that are offering inferior products with limited back-up service and support. But, with time, we may see consumers turn back to bricks and mortar retail for good, old-fashioned service.

What is your favourite product of 2014 so far?

By far, that would have to be our New Euromaid 540 upright range. It is the first 540 on the market with a superior build quality and with the most advanced safety features in this size in Australia. The response has been so positive it has been hard to keep up with production. It truly has been Euromaid’s product of the year.

Euromaid 54-centimetre cooker
Superior: Euromaid’s upright 54 range.