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Leveraging Faberware: Syratech adds turf.

EAST BOSTON, Mass. -- Using the Farberware brand name as an engine, Syratech will move aggressively into five new categories of housewares at the January International Housewares Show.

Under a new Farberware Home Products label, Syratech will launch stainless steel barware, stainless steel kitchen accessories, white ceramic serveware, terra-cotta serveware and woodenware at the show, according to executive vice president, Alan Kanter. With more than 100 total SKUs, the introduction will be the largest for housewares products in Syratech's history, he said.

"Through all of this, we are trying to capitalize on the Farberware name," he continued.

"This is a major, major blitz for us," Kanter added. "It ties in with the direction we're going in housewares; it broadens our product line offerings."

Syratech paid an estimated $42 million for Farberware in April, according to industry executives. Syratech executives have never confirmed the amount of the purchase price.

At the time of the purchase, Syratech's chairman and chief executive, Leonard Florence, said the reputation of the Farberware name would enable Syratech to expand its housewares lines.

Florence struck a deal with Meyer Corp. in June to license the Farberware name for cookware and bakeware for an estimated $25 million. He retains the rights to the name for other categories.

Florence said he expected that Syratech would earn a profit this year from Farberware, although he declined to say how much.

Syratech rolled out its first Farberware brand products at the Gourmet Products Show in April, shortly after it acquired the primary assets of the manufacturer of stainless steel cookware and small electric appliances. The new offerings at that time included the repackaged Glacier Pure by Farberware, a line of water filtration pitchers; an electric jewelry cleaner, and a pressure cooker.

The new lines, which represent the first major launch of new products under the Farberware name since the company was sold, will put Syratech into a new part of the housewares business.

Housewares companies owned by Syratech are the Farberware small electrics and cookware division; Elements, a glassware company; and Carvel Hall, a cutlery maker. The license for Farberware dinnerware, glassware and flatware is owned by Retroneu/Excel, and Lifetime Hoan holds the Farberware license for gadgets and cutlery.

Targeted to housewares departments and better specialty stores, all Farberware Home Products items will be priced along key price points, in the $10 to $50 retail range, Kanter said. Farberware tabletop products currently marketed by other licensees fall within that range as well, such as Retroneu/ Excel's Farberware-brand basic dinnerware, with 20-piece sets retailing for $39.99 and $49.99.

The two stainless steel lines will cover kitchenware and barware accessories, Kanter said. Items will include towel racks, dish racks and napkin holders for the kitchen program, and cocktail trays, shakers and ice buckets for the barware line.

The ceramic whiteware line and terra-cotta line will include serveware such as platters and bowls, he said.

Additionally, the firm will feature 30 to 40 SKUs of basic and fashion woodenware, an "extensive" collection ranging from salad bowls to spice racks, Kanter noted.

Each collection will stand on its own, but the products can be coordinated across all the different lines, Kanter added. All Farberware Home Products will be sold in four-color photo boxes.

The firm will begin shipping in March and April, Kanter reported.

In recent years, the firm has focused its attention on expanding its business through broadening its distribution in housewares and tabletop and acquiring other companies that fit with that plan. It has sought to expand its distribution to mass merchants and beef up its core department store business.

Syratech's subsidiaries now fall under one of three categories --tabletop, housewares and holiday. As the country's largest supplier of silver flatware and giftware, commanding an estimated 45 percent of the U.S. silver flatware market, the firm owns four tabletop divisions: Wallace Silversmiths, Towle Silversmiths, International Silver and C.J. Vander, a high-end sterling flatware manufacturer bought earlier this year.

Syratech's holiday product holdings include Holiday Workshop, a marketer of seasonal accessories, giftware and plush; Rauch Industries, the leading domestic manufacturer of Christmas; and Silvestri, an upscale Christmas decor supplier. The firm reported plans earlier this month to purchase Potpourri Press, a Greensboro, N.C.-based supplier of Christmas collectibles, ornaments and trim, as well as non-seasonal giftware and decorative accessories.
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Title Annotation:plans new products for January International Housewares Show
Author:Raffaele, Martha
Publication:HFN The Weekly Newspaper for the Home Furnishing Network
Date:Nov 25, 1996
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