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Gruppo LUBE - Convention on 7 September: excellence and specialisation evolve in the stores

An event was held on 7 September at the Verme Theatre in Milan, at the same time as the Supersalone furniture show and the accompanying Fuorisalone event, called “ESSERE LUBE. L’eccellenza si evolve negli store” (“Being Lube - excellence evolves in the store”), a convention that was strongly desired by Gruppo LUBE, Italy's leading kitchen manufacturer, where the situation was assessed following the months of the pandemic, which also had a major impact on the kitchens market, but, most importantly, the projects and strategies of the Group for the next three years were also presented.

The last eighteen months have been very long, it sometimes seems more like ten years have passed” were the words used by the CEO, Fabio Giulianelli to start the convention. “I like to use a metaphor to describe the consequences of Covid: the pandemic has had the same effect as a safety car during a Formula 1 race. The distances between competitors have been reduced, everyone has had to slow down and go at the same speed, with no overtaking. It was a hard blow for us, who were way out ahead in the race, but now the time has come to start up the engines once again. The safety car is back in the pits and the time to accelerate has arrived. At this point, whoever has the best car is going to win the race and leave their mark. The engine on our car is the kitchen, with the store as the chassis and the sales force as the driver; we can start driving fast and competing once again”.

The event was held in the presence of the authorities, including the President of the Marche Region, the Councillor for Sport and Tourism of the Lombardy Region and the Marche Region, and the Mayors of Macerata and Civitanova Marche, as well as journalists and the top management of the main Eldom group partners. All the Gruppo LUBE stores in Italy and abroad also participated in the convention; the real stars of the strategy successfully introduced some years ago by the company, which focuses on a memorable purchasing experience and on quality combined with professionalism, winning strategies that are reflected in the BEING LUBE philosophy. This is much more than just two simple words, it is a way of experiencing and creating a kitchen, a home and a lifestyle. A set of shared and tangible values that take shape in the numerous stores distributed throughout the country.

Gruppo LUBE did, in fact, celebrate the end of 2020, despite the pandemic, by opening 500 single-brand stores in Italy, with a further 150 stores to be opened by the end of 2021. “We have an ambitious objective in mind for the next three years – says Fabio Giulianelli – we want to reach the milestone of Euro 300mln in revenues; but how? By focusing on the single-brand store”.

In order to guarantee excellence, the store, which was the central topic of the convention and will also be the central focus of the Group’s future strategies, needs to know how to evolve. In order to be best, to compete and to emerge, it is necessary to have a vision, to grow and to improve every day, to listen without ever losing sight of the starting point, the history, one that, in the case of LUBE, stretches back over fifty years.

The keyword is SPECIALISATION; the generic distribution model no longer has any reason to exist. In its place, there is a single-brand store that is distinctive and recognisable, thanks to precise positioning and a strong identity on the market.

In 2017, specialised stores accounted for 45% of company revenues. This figure had risen to 84% at the end of 2020 and, in the first seven months of 2021, specialised stores accounted for 89% of Gruppo LUBE revenues. “Focusing on single-brand stores is the only way to go to achieve market leadership,” adds Giulianelli. “The distinguishing trait of our strategy is being unique, opening a network of specialised, single-brand stores throughout the country that sell only kitchens, something we have been doing successfully for over fifty years”.

We emphasised this uniqueness and specialisation with the CREO Kitchens brand, which exists under the same umbrella of the Gruppo LUBE “parent company”, but also has its own identity and clear positioning on the market,” Giulianelli points out. “CREO Kitchens was created as a new distribution model and conquered its own market share, right from the very beginning, with a clear and recognisable identity; its path is clearly outlined. It is not a secondary brand, an offshoot of Cucine LUBE, but rather a competing brand that operates in a precise market segment”.

The most recent evolution to underscore the identity and recognisability of a LUBE and CREO Kitchens store is CERTIFICATION. Gruppo LUBE is, in fact, the first company that will start certifying its single-brand stores in 2021, a strong signal within the sector, but, first and foremost, a guarantee of quality, transparency, authenticity and safety for the final consumer, who is certain of purchasing an Italian-made product in a store that reflects all the essential features of a leading Group on its reference market.

The separation between CREO Kitchens and Cucine LUBE is the natural consequence of specialisation and the distinctive identity so strongly desired by the Group: in one word, it is EXCELLENCE, which evolves in the store and is firmly anchored to the concept of BEING LUBE.

The convention ended with an enthralling performance by Antonello Venditti, who gave the guests that carefree feeling of normality that has been missing for so long and the shot of energy needed to start over in the best possible way.

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