Hansgrohe Opens Centre of Inspiration in Joburg

Hansgrohe SE, one of the leading global bathroom and sanitation specialists, recently unveiled its Centre of Inspiration in Johannesburg. At the event, which was attended by celebrity architects, interior designers and key influencers Siegfried Gaensslen, CEO of Hansgrohe SE, unveiled the centre which will serve as a flagship showroom and the company’s African headquarters in Johannesburg.

Situated in the Kramerville design district, the centre is ideally located next to the M1 highway. With its striking minimalist design and glass façade, it has already become a landmark on one of Jozi’s busiest routes. Designed by Paragon Architects the centre houses a cutting-edge showroom that showcases both premium Hansgrohe and Axor designer products. Spread over a sizeable 1,600 square metres, the Hansgrohe portion of the building also houses a training facility, a technical division, a logistics warehouse and offices.

From left to right - Philippe Grohe (brand manager for Axor), Siegfried Gaensslen (CEO Hansgrohe SE) and Anthony Mederer (MD Hansgrohe Africa).
From left to right - Philippe Grohe (brand manager for Axor), Siegfried Gaensslen (CEO Hansgrohe SE) and Anthony Mederer (MD Hansgrohe Africa).

Managing director for Hansgrohe Africa, Anthony Mederer, says the multi-purpose centre will serve as an inspiration destination for interior designers, architects and those wishing to create their dream bathroom. “Apart from the showroom and product installations, the centre also boasts conferencing facilities where regular talks and inspiration events presented by industry experts will be hosted. The idea was to create a hub where creativity can be stimulated and celebrated”, says Mederer.
Hansgrohe has achieved a strong leadership position in South Africa and is rightly regarded as the manufacturer with the most cutting-edge bathroom design. “With our new flagship showroom we are now in a position to reach South African customers more directly than before. Thanks to South Africa’s status as a gateway to the entire African market, there is plenty of potential for future growth”, says Mr Gaensslen.

He also emphasizes Hansgrohe’s commitment to building a sustainable distribution network across the African continent. “Emerging markets with their burgeoning middle-classes are seeing an increase in hospitality, commercial and residential developments. These markets are highly aspirational and demand high quality products. With a heritage of 112 years and a solid presence in southern Africa for close to two decades, Hansgrohe is ideally positioned to answer this demand” says Mr Gaensslen.

There is an increasing appetite on the continent for imported luxury goods especially from Europe. German technology based products are not only desired, but also trusted by the consumer. The company’s African expansion continues to target both the top-end market with its premium designer brand Axor and the emerging market with Hansgrohe – the premium brand for bathroom and kitchen fixtures, showers, thermostat and plumbing technology.

“Entry level products retain all the trademark design elements, such as the EcoSmart technology, which is especially important for Africa’s environmental sustainability and offers great value without compromising on design” say Mr Mederer.

The brand new Hansgrohe Centre of Inspiration in Kramerville, Johannesburg will serve as its African headquarters with further showrooms and sales offices based in Cape Town, George, PE, Bloemfontein, Durban and Lagos, Nigeria. Its east African sales office in Nairobi will open its doors in early 2014.

The globally recognised bathroom specialist, which is headquartered in Schiltach in Germany, has become a major industry player in South Africa and currently holds 13% of the local market, which makes it the second biggest player in the country.

“In the five years since it started its African expansion programme, Hansgrohe Africa has seen year on year growth which exceeds projections”, says Mr Mederer. To date, 30% of the African operation’s total turnover in 2013 has been generated from sales outside of South Africa and this is forecast to grow to 50% by 2015.

Currently Hansgrohe has a presence in Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Mauritius, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe and Zambia with new African territories planned for Tanzania, Angola and Rwanda. French speaking countries are serviced by Hansgrohe France based in Europe.

About Hansgrohe Africa
The local subsidiary of German origin has acquired a reputation in the sanitation sector as one of the innovative leaders in technology, design and sustainability. Hansgrohe Africa has a national footprint in South Africa and is a key player in Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana, Mauritius, Namibia and Tanzania. Comprises of two brands, Hansgrohe and Axor where its product ranges is manufactured at its six German plants, in France, Netherlands, United States and China. Hansgrohe Africa is headquartered in Johannesburg with showrooms and offices in Cape Town, Durban, George, Bloemfontein and Port Elizabeth.

For further information on Hansgrohe visit www.hansgrohe.co.za

About Hansgrohe – the original from the Black Forest

During its more than 111-years history, the company Hansgrohe (www.hansgrohe.com), with headquarters in Schiltach in the Black Forest, has acquired a reputation in the sanitation sector as one of the innovative leaders in technology, design and sustainability. With its mixers, showers and shower systems, Hansgrohe creates the original products that make the bathroom more functional, more comfortable and more beautiful. It is no coincidence that they can be found in prominent prestige projects such as on the giant cruiser “Queen Mary II”, in Terminal 5 of Heathrow Airport in London, in the tallest man-made structure ever built, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, as well as at the Chancellor's office in Berlin, in the Yoo luxury apartments in New York or at the Masdar City Institute of Science and Technology in Abu Dhabi. The company and its products were honoured with a myriad awards, among the latest ones being the “Umsicht Science Award”, the “Designpreis der Bundesrepublik Deutschland 2012“ (Design Award 2012 of the Federal Republic of Germany) and the “iF Gold Award 2012” In 2012, the company generated sales of about EUR 805 million with its Axor, Hansgrohe, Pharo and Pontos brands (2011: EUR 764 million). The Hansgrohe Group currently has a global workforce of about 3,400 employees, with about two-thirds of them working in Germany. The company, which takes tough action against product piracy and intellectual property theft, manufactures its products in six German plants, in France, the Netherlands, in the U.S. and in China.