By Martin Vedris

SYDNEY: Asko Australia signed a new long term contract extension with Morphy Richards UK to distribute the brand of appliances in Australia and the new year will see some product upgrades and a completely new website.

Asko Appliances Managing Director Richard Sim and Morphy Richards Managing Director Phil Green finalised the long term contract extension last week and announced the news today.

“Morphy Rickards in the UK were very happy with how we were securing the premium part of the market place here and so was Asko,” said Morphy Richards national marketing and sales manager, Murray Barnes.

“To further drive the brand and give more resources to it, we needed to put a long term commitment to it and both parties were keen for that.”

A confidentiality clause prevents Asko Australia from revealing the finer details of the contract, including the extended time frame, but Barnes advised that the new contract will also allow a renewed focus and commitment with an eye on the environment.

“There will be substantial human resources allocated towards it, there will be more support from the UK in product development specifically for the Australian market,” said Barnes.

“Worldwide, Morphy Richards want to secure a premium market positioning with an underlying environmental focus going forward and that’s a strong alignment with the Akso business which has premium positioning in the market with high quality product and a strong environmental focus.”

Barnes said that he aims to build on the premium positioning of the brand and work closely with the retail channel.

“Our distribution partners have grown helped us grow the brand rapidly over the past 18 months with width of ranging, and our retail partners will continue to be a prime focus.”

The company is finalsing their Mother’s Day range, which will include an upgrade and new release of the Illuma Kettle that combines blue lighting, reflective glass and stainless steel to produce the effect of a see through kettle when it is boiling water and when it is off it looks like a stainless steel kettle.

Morphy Richards in the UK has also invested in a new website which will be launched early  in the new year as well.