Grohe is expecting to witness continued strong growth during 2014 and the mid-term future, on the back of its excellent performance both in the UAE and in the GCC last year when it registered double-digit growth.
Saudi Arabia is its key market in the region, according to the German faucets and fittings manufacturer. “In recent years, we have continued working in collaboration with a number of regional partners on large-scale works,” says Simon Shaya, general manager and president of Grohe East Mediterranean, Middle East and Africa.
“They have completed several milestone projects in rapidly developing markets, like Saudi Arabia, all of which have been well received. We have several project success stories in Saudi Arabia, starting with Princess Nora University, the Fairmont Makkah and the Jabal Omar Development Project, to name a few,” he adds.
In the UAE, the company has recently been associated with the Jumeirah Beach Hotel and the Abu Dhabi Rosewood Hotel.
“Quality is what sets us apart,” comments Shaya. “At Grohe, quality is defined by the highest levels of craftsmanship, durability, functionality, design and convenience of use.”
One of the keys to Grohe’s success is German precision engineering. This is part of the company’s ‘Made in Germany’ strategy – all innovation processes are coordinated in Germany, closely linking in-house expertise in design, development, production and quality control. All three of German production sites are also closely linked with its international production operations.
“This ensures global compliance with the same high Grohe standards and makes for continuous knowledge transfer. Grohe products are produced in plants that are operated under strict quality, environmental, health and safety standards, complying with all relevant legislation, regulation and standards. Employees at all Grohe plants, corporate departments and subsidiaries of the Grohe group apply all safety and health guidelines.
“Grohe design is another top priority. The focus on performance means people respect our products – but our pursuit of beauty ensures they love them too. That’s reflected in the many best-of-the-best awards for our zeitgeist designs, including the Red Dot Design Team Award, more usually reserved for brands such as Apple, Bose and Porsche.”
He continues: “We have always valued the importance of having our characteristic product design. Every successful brand has an identity which makes it unique and successful, and we work with a team of in-house designers, headed up by Paul Flowers, senior vice-president of design. This gives the team a basis for creativity and innovation. The international designers provide contributions from different cultures and integrate them into their work on a daily basis for the worldwide market.”
According to Shaya, Grohe Grandera, part of the Grohe Spa collection, is the most important product launched by the company at ISH 2013. “The range is a beautiful album – reminiscent of the Victorian and Louis XIV era with its lavish gold elemental ornaments, the perfect product for the MEA (Middle East and Africa) region,” he says. “In addition, we have the state-of-the-art Grohe F-digital Deluxe. With this product, one can transform the bathroom into the ultimate spa experience. Using an Apple iPod Touch, the F-digital Deluxe gives the end-user fingertip control to manage light, steam and sound.”
With these products, the company is confident of increasing its sales as well as winning landmark projects. Some of the other recent introductions to Grohe’s products portfolio are new touch kitchen faucets, namely Zedra and Minta Touch, which are hygienic, reliable and water-saving apparatus. They can be operated by touch or using the conventional lever. They are hybrid faucets offering an all-new level of everyday convenience, he says.
Grohe has also launched a new range of faucets and fittings that includes size variants from XS to XL.
“All our product developments and research and development programmes are based on the legacy and decades of experience we have in the region. That is why we have launched in the MEA the extensive range of Grohe faucets and fittings that now includes size variants from XS to XL as well as a broad choice of different designs to coordinate with all bathroom decors. With the new medium-height taps, and vessel spouts for freestanding washbasins, Grohe now completes its offer,” he says.
Grohe cares for all end-user needs. The medium-height variants now offer the Muslim community comfort and ease for daily ablution practice as part of the Islamic cleansing etiquette.
Commenting on Grohe’s sustainability initiatives, Shaya says: “We perceive ourselves to be a company that operates sustainably, and takes sustainability very seriously. In addition to environmental responsibility, our social responsibility practices extend beyond our staff. Grohe is committed to the public where we encourage and promote water sustainability practices.
“Over the past few years in the Middle East and Levant alone, Grohe has implemented its global WaterCare campaign through the initiative ‘Grohe Green Mosque’ in Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Syria and Jordan. We are also working with several mosques across the region to increase public awareness about water conservation techniques and to secure the future of this precious natural resource. To date, we have successfully reduced excess water consumption to great effect – at The Great Ummayad Mosque we have reduced excess consumption by 25 per cent.
“Our commitment to sustainability touches all areas of our business. From product development to packaging, we lead by example. Production at Grohe has been designed to minimise our environmental impact, energy consumption is kept to a minimum and waste heat is re-used.”
On the company’s future plans, he says: “We feel that the region is at the start of a new growth cycle and we are well-positioned after all the investment in the region to capture the momentum. Our aim is to continue to win more project developments in the Gulf, to carry on the success that we have already seen. As a company, we’re also looking to drive growth in Turkey and in East and West Africa.
“As a global brand, we are always looking to invest in markets that have growth potential for Grohe and the African continent has proven to be the right focal point. We are always seeking new ways to expand and widen our reach. The African continent will bring spectacular rewards to the brand,”