Just a few days ago, I returned from my trip to the fabulous Living Kitchen international kitchen show at IMM Cologne in Germany. This was my second trip to the Living Kitchen show at the invitation of BLANCO. This time around I paid my own way (except for a few fabulous dinners with the BLANCO team) because I wanted additional flexibility in my schedule while there...not that there wasn't an ample amount of free time-I just wanted complete freedom...so of course, I ended up attending nearly every event!
I am a member of the BLANCO Design Council, which is truly an honor, as I have the opportunity to contribute to shaping product design and strategy from time to time. BLANCO, while a global brand, has a corporate culture that in my experience with the company over a number of years, feels like a small, local, company (a good one!) The CEO, Achim Schreiber, greets, chats with and listens to anyone and everyone in a casual, friendly, way. I didn't realize who he was when I was chatting with him last week. I thought he might be a local BLANCO distributor or a regular, friendly, guy who had something to do with BLANCO till I found out later. He's relaxed, easy going, friendly and a great listener-a lovely man.
All others connected to BLANCO-in Europe, Canada, US and elsewhere whom I've met over time, are also every bit as friendly and positive from my experience. I have to say, having an interest in "corporate culture", I often observe and try to figure out a company's vibe over time, by connecting the dots from different types of communications and other experiences. I'm convinced that the values of a corporate culture, as has been said before by others, travel from the top down on roads that are either positive, negative, fearful, confused, apathetic, passionate, good enough and so on. BLANCO's U.S. team, a truly great group of people, has a genuine dedication to, and belief in the brand that is remarkable, but let me also say, very well placed.
From my point of view, BLANCO, the corporation, takes the positive, socially intelligent, and passionate paths - from the top down - to create an absolutely superb range of products that has that desirable mix of precision engineering and beauty. BLANCO's products are at once on trend and reflective of a classic modern design which renders them timeless. BLANCO does a whole lot of things right. They know their customer...very well.
Ok, time to see some of the gorgeous products that I shot from the show floor. Some products are not available in the US, many are, but the point here is to help you experience that special mix of design and engineering. Take a look at swoon-worthy kitchen sinks and faucets!
Above: The new BLANCOLIAN kitchen faucet
Above: Note the understated, elegant color, Truffle, the continuity of the flowing lines of the drainboard and the stainless steel rack, the simplicity of the drain cover, and the overall form of this top mount sink.
Above: BLANCO's new faucet, BLANCOHOT, that supplies both near boiling water as well as normal hot and cold water from a single spout
Above: Simply, precision stainless steel sink and faucet
Above: A sink with a beautiful form featuring an edge with an interesting, modern dimension
Above: A beautiful island in BLANCO's booth - note the faucet that can be lowered to the sink surface and covered with the cutting board - flexible design
Above: Seamless, stunning, stainless steel
Above: Another shot of this fully integrated, elegant stainless steel BLANCO SteelArt sink and countertop
Above: A new faucet by BLANCO which is easy to operate-ideal for universal design purposes by twisting the soft black section back and forth and side to side to operate flow and temperature
Above: A new take on mixing materials - note the stainless steel trim, the indestructible Silgranite material in the sink and coordinating finishes in the faucet - elegant
Above: BLANCO's new color, Cinder, with matching color on the faucet as well as a useful sink, sectioned off by a lower separation for design flexibility, once again
Above: BLANCO SteelArt, useful and beautiful - I could see this paired with a wood countertop for those who are fearful of mixing sinks with wood tops
Above: Simply, a close up of that precision engineering - I happen to really love BLANCO's use of stainless and matte colors on their faucets
I hope you have enjoyed these shots and that they communicate BLANCO's dedication to quality and design!