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Exhibition stand at KBB 2018

KBB 2018 Review

KBB’s bi-annual event is one of the biggest events in the kitchen, bedroom and bathroom supplier calendar and it’s easy to see why.

KBB’s bigger than ever

KBB is a considerable draw in the kitchen, bedroom and bathroom industries. With many companies waiting specifically for the event to unveil some genuinely astonishing innovations and designs.

2018’s show proved yet again that if you want to be at the cutting edge in this industry you need to be at KBB.

KBB’s vision of the future

This year there were a lot of innovations making waves at the show. KBB exhibitors were shaping how kitchens, bedrooms and bathrooms will look and function in the future. But they were revolutionising how story’s of innovative new technologies or designs will be told to the customer.

This meant that five key areas at the show caused the most excitement, these were technology, retail theatre, materials, colour and reinvention.

1. Tech

Probably the biggest highlight of the event was the sheer volume of technology on show. Many of the companies exhibiting had some exciting technological advances to present. Items on show ranged from smarter homes to using proven maritime technology to make shower cubicles truly watertight.

However, it was the use of tech at the show itself that helped make KBB more exciting. Advances in technology went beyond the products to the stands themselves.

It’s all in the mind… #KBB18 #VW4D #VirtualReality

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One example is the rise of VR at this year’s event. Many of those exhibiting have begun to realise the potential of virtual reality when it comes to exploring designs.

This meant attendees could experience first hand the showroom of the future. With designs personalised to individual tastes and requirements.

2. Retail theatre

One of the key talking points this year was the concept of the ‘retail theatre’.

A showroom is no longer enough for the modern customers. Customers today need to understand the concept your selling. They need to experience the idea behind the innovation. Or they’ll look elsewhere.

A good clip from #kbb show. #kbb2018 #nec #birmingham #brass #band

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Retail theatre doesn’t merely mean live activation or drama. It has more to do with simply trying to present things in a more thought-provoking way. It’s about going beyond the expected.

For ‘retail theatre’s’ fans the idea is game-changing. KBB was even running very popular talks on the subject.

But, at this years event retail theatre went way beyond the theory. With forward-thinking companies using some very imaginative ideas to help get their points across. One notable example was Crosswater UK’s extremely playful slide and ball pool which attracted a lot of attention.

3. Materials

With the advances in technology and product innovation across the industry has come the ability to take advantage of more and more materials. Bathrooms are no longer simply porcelain and tile.

You now have the ability to make anything with your room more natural, earthy, tactile or whatever you can imagine. Copper, wood, and beyond were on show to help inspire the kitchens, bedrooms and bathrooms of the future.

4. Colour

Colour is back. Not one particular colour for the season but every colour you can imagine.

More importantly is where the colours are. There’s no limitation here either. You’re not limited to a bathroom suite or a cupboard door. Instead, you can change the colour of pretty much anything in any room. Taps, sinks, tiles, tubs, worktops, floors and more are available in whatever colour takes your fancy.

5. Reinvention

#kbb18 #kbb2018

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Also on show was the pure inventiveness of the companies at the show. Many of the companies at the show were on a mission to help reinvent the rooms themselves. These companies were taking the known formats and turning them on the heads.

Reinvention made a big splash at KBB. Blum’s stand challenging how kitchens are designed walked away KBB’s prize for the best stand. But they were by no means the only company working this way.

Companies like Cosentino turned kitchens into pieces of art, or Closet Maid made cupboards versatile were just the tip of the iceberg at KBB 2018. Which only made the future of the industry even more exciting.


So how should you get noticed at KBB 2020? The best way in today’s market is a stand that gets you noticed, both at the event and afterwards when people in the industry share and discuss it on social media like Pinterest and Instagram.

Trends are for delivering a hands-on experience and delivering a memorable brand experience. Creativity is the key to success at this event. How can you turn your products or services into a crowd-pleasing activation? If you want some ideas or a quote for your next stand, give us a call.