Ask the Retailer: John Monk Trading Co.

John Monk, owner, John Monk Trading Co., one of New Zealand’s largest importers of houseware and giftware products, discusses his success with What More UK products

John Monk Trading Co. is one of New Zealand’s largest importers of houseware and giftware products supplying retailers with products from brands such as Tala Kitchenware, and What More plastics. Here, John discusses why he imports What More UK and how well he is doing with it.  

Why did you choose to distribute What More UK?

We first spoke to What More UK a decade ago at Ambiente as we had been enjoying good business with other strong UK suppliers, including Rayware, Tala, Henry and Watson Potteries, for many years. We liked the way What More conducted business, with their straight-up attitude and flair for developing new innovative products. We predicted correctly that this company was going places. From a relatively small operation on a worldwide scale we’ve seen this company grow and develop into a worldwide recognised brand with quality product.

What More is now considered a very recognised brand in New Zealand known for quality and good value. Over the last three years we’ve experienced turbulent times with currency fluctuations, raw material costs, and more recently Brexit uncertainty and shipping costs, however, What More sales have been maintained.

What collections do you stock?

We sell across the range, from plastic housewares to bakeware, with the exception of food storage.

How do you best communicate the story, design, functionality of the brand to retailers?

Made in England is a very strong selling point for us in New Zealand and our major retailer Briscoes has grasped this, so the What More UK range had grown to be a category winner. Large in-store displays and point of sale promotions has certainly pushed sales.

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