This month, Dan Black talks about travelling to China to meet suppliers, the Christmas rush and team party, and our new Eau Good Glass filter water bottle.
Here's an update on life at black+blum, in our lead up to Christmas.
In late November, myself and our Purchasing Manager, Silvana, travelled to cities in China including Xiamen and Shenzhen. The purpose of our trip was to meet with suppliers to learn about new production techniques and see our upcoming designs being made in the factory first-hand. It was a very unique and worthwhile visit.
December is normally our busiest month and this year has proved no exception. People often buy our designs for themselves, but we know they also make great gifts. Our team have been doing a fantastic job of getting orders out as quickly as possible in the mad dash rush of early December.
It's not all work, work work! We also had an amazing office party at The Dead Dolls House in Islington.
This Victorian venue goes from fancy restaurant to uber-cool club. I have to admit to being one of the first to leave (well I am getting older and had to catch my train home), but I know some of our team stayed till the end and were probably feeling slightly fragile the following morning.
On a more serious note… This month I was invited by Dids Macdonald OBE of ACID (Anti Copying in Design) to speak to a committee of MPs at parliament. Currently a large percentage of our sales come from exporting our designs to countries in the European market. We are able to protect our designs from copying by registering them under European Design rights.
When we leave the EU, there is concern about what will happen to the laws and if our designs will remain protected (i.e. will copies be allowed to be sold within Europe). ACID is doing an amazing job of bringing this concern to Parliament and to make sure our design rights remain protected. Here's a selfie with Big Ben, I couldn't resist...
As a company, we have been copied on numerous occasions, but with the help of ACID we have been able to defeat the copycats on every occasion. Hopefully by making MPs aware of the importance of EU design rights, they will be able to ensure things don't change as we negotiate our exit.
Drum roll please… This month we have a super exciting new design launch with our Eau Good Glass. We believe this is the first, the best and currently the only glass filter water bottle on the market and are really excited that it has just arrived in stock in the UK and Europe (to be followed soon by the USA).
It continues the success of our iconic Eau Good filter water bottle. Made from hand blown Borosilicate glass, it is a quality bottle that is a pleasure to hold and to drink from. It comes with one Binchotan charcoal filter (six months life) and also a protective insulating neoprene sleeve.
If you want to avoid buying bottled water, prefer drinking from glass rather than plastic and want to make your tap water taste great, this is the perfect bottle. It has been selling really fast and we have limited stock, so you'll need to order quickly to ensure you get one for Christmas and the new year.
Like always, we have some innovative new designs in the pipeline, so stay tuned and I look forward to checking in again in the 2017.
Until then, have a great Christmas and fantastic new year!