Essential reading for retailers and suppliers in the home improvement market

What More UK: Why New Product Development and Innovation is Important to Us

Published: 5 July 2021 - James Mead

What More UK, the market leading UK housewares manufacturer, started out with just 14 products, now they offer a range of nearly 2000 items. We asked them why new product development is such an important part of the business.

 

What More UK is well known for its popular home storage brand Wham which is available in every major UK supermarket and a further 1600 independent retailers up and down the country. Many people may not realise that the firm's great success has been underpinned by continual product development.

Company Director Tony Grimshaw explained:

"Trends and fashions are always changing and that's especially true in the housewares market where people want products that work with their interior decorations.

"We always try to keep one step ahead and a product development strategy has helped us keep fresh and new. If we'd just stayed with our original 14 products we'd never have developed some of our most popular lines, like the award winning Upcycled range made from recycled single use plastics.

"Developing new products requires investment and that brings risks, but it's a far greater risk to stay still and not change with the times."

What More UK seems to be making a point of trying, and succeeding at, almost every form of business development strategy in the book:

The company has managed to increase sales in its traditional markets year on year; through exporting, they've continuously opened up new markets for their products; and since 1999, when they started out, the firm has also engaged in product development at a phenomenal rate.

One of the few directions they've not explored is a complete diversification, and that can't be ruled out: What More's owner and Managing Director Andy Holt is also the chairman of Accrington Stanley Football Club.

What More UK produces housewares of all kinds, from home storage to around the sink items, laundry and outdoor gardenware like planters and window boxes. During lockdown What More's bakeware range has proved extremely popular.

What More's products are available in all major supermarkets in Britain, 1600 independent retailers around the UK, DIY chains and wholesalers. What More also exports to a further 75 countries around the world, making them a truly global brand proudly based in Lancashire.

For more information about What More UK please visit www.whatmoreuk.com.

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