Aga Rangemaster blames ‘challenging’ UK market conditions

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The owner of the Aga Rangemaster brand Middleby Corporation blames ‘challenging’ UK market conditions and has noted such in its report for the third quarter – ending on 29th September 2018.

The report mentions that Aga Rangemaster saw a decline in business during the period “resulting from market conditions in the UK”.

The US group said its residential kitchen equipment division saw a 1.5% rise in net sales in the third quarter, increasing by $2.2m to reach $153.5m and that gross profit for the group business increased by around $32.7m to reach $261.2m in the period.

Middleby also noted that its restructuring charges in the third quarter included a one off $8.7m associated charge with the closure of Grange, which it described as a “non-core” furniture business in France that was acquired in conjunction with Aga Rangemaster back in 2015.

“Domestic growth was offset by the Aga Rangemaster businesses which continued to be negatively impacted by challenging market conditions in the UK with the uncertainty of Brexit,” said Middleby Corporation chairman and CEO Selim Bassoul.

Its been a troubling and difficult couple of years since US appliance giant Whirlpool pulled out from a takeover bid for AGA in late 2015 paving the way for Middleby Corporation to acquire in September 2015 and integrate the Aga Rangemaster brand into its other offerings, namely La Cornue, Divertimenti, Fired Earth, and Marvel.

However, despite the recent report the firm has struggled to transition itself in a changing market were appeal for its products has waned among stiff competition from the likes of Bertazzoni who in addition to selling range cookers has diversified somewhat better and expanded its range with recent news of bringing the first Bertazzoni dishwashers to the UK market.

AGA Rangemaster Group Limited is a British manufacturer of range cookers, kitchen appliances, and interior furnishings. The latest news is more sad news for fans of AGA Rangemaster, after it announced last year that Aga had closed its Coalbrookdale factory for good, bringing 300 years of iron making and industry in the town to a close.

That the UK is facing challenging times is not in dispute but it should also be noted that when businesses have struggled before 23 June 2016, (i.e the date of The United Kingdom European Union membership referendum) that ‘Brexit Woes’ is perhaps wishful thinking as once Brexit is decided one way or another that other excuses need to be found.