Crane Cast Iron Cookware
We are bringing to market a collection of design led cast iron cookware by British product designer Barnaby Tuke.
The cast ironware range has been designed to be as visually comfortable on the table as on the cooker, whilst retaining a paired back aesthetic that will not date, combined with carefully considered functionality, appropriate to the manufacturing processes involved. Central to their design is that the pans are serious tools for cooking with the professional cook and home cook in mind.Throughout the design process we have continually consulted home cooks and professional chefs and have responded to their advice where appropriate.
The handles have been ergonomically designed providing a very firm hand hold. We think this USP makes the collection standout to customers, where concerns over handling heavy cookware are important to making a purchase decision. The diameter of the frying pan, low casserole and large casserole are the same, enabling one lid to fit all. This unique feature provides added functionality in the kitchen, together with reducing manufacturing costs.
We have sought to address the changing demographic of consumers who cook for the love of food, as opposed to as a chore. We feel our cast iron collection will stand out not only in terms of design but this approach to brand positioning, which is a stark difference to leaders in this field such as Le Creuset and Staub, where the pitch still rests within the sphere of domestic life circa 1970’s.
Our brand name, Crane, comes from the Crane that was used as the arm over the fireplace to heat pots. Referred to by Hannah Glasse in The Art of Cookery 1747.
Our products' design and branding reflect on a pure passion for cooking and eating great food. We recognise changes in domestic life, where more men lead the cooking, combined with an increase in single occupancy households. For instance in 41% of US households men are the primary cooks. We have found that when men cook, they spend an average of 41 minutes prep time and look to cook with more complex and varied ingredients. In a poll taken of 2,000 men, by Hotpoint, they found that half of the 2,000 men surveyed have spent an average of £498 on kitchen appliances in a bid to improve their cooking. Almost half of which said they would rather invest in kitchen appliances than new gadgets, such as tablets and e-readers. Topping their kitchen appliance wish list is a new oven, followed by pots and pans and professional knives.
Our collection is non gender specific and we hope to see a non prescribed approach to the way people cook and entertain when using our products. Without a determined style it gives the consumer a freedom to design their own style in both their cooking and environment. We hope we contribute to aligning the cooking and sharing food and cultural art form, accessible to everyone, taking this wholly out of the realm of the domestic chore.
Substantial accomplishments to date
Charmain has written feature profile pieces on food for publications such as Fork magazine and is founder of the app London on a Plate.
We have established a partnership with a French foundry to lay down the tooling for the collection, and we have also arranged a partnership based on equity for the branding services of Studio Small. Studio Small have an established track record with brands we are similar to such as AnglePoise, Dunhill and Margaret Howell.
We plan to work with Salter for distribution purposes who feel the range has some strong potential:
"We were looking for a contemporary range of cast iron cookware and Crane really met our criteria for design and function. We look forward to working with them once the range is in production. Our distribution business works through the UK and parts of Europe and we see some exciting potential with this design led cookware." Simon Bluring Managing Director Salter Housewares
We have received some incredible feedback on our designs and intent so far:
"A brilliant professional pot, for any enthusiast, cool, elegant and hardy at the same time" Margot Henderson
"Great British thoughtful design, both robust and elegant with beautiful functionality - can't wait to get some" Sebastian Conran
"I love to cook delicious, unfussy food for my friends and family. The solid looking design of Crane cast iron cookware is both purposeful and seductive. I can't wait to get them in my hands and on my hob!" Tom Herbert, The Baker Brothers.
"Cast iron cookware is unrivalled when cooking on top of a wood burning stove but rarely do you find such well designed and perfectly proportioned pans as Crane’s offering. The low casserole is a particular favourite and the smart use of vitreous enamel across the range makes this collection technically brilliant." Ced Wells, Charnwood.
Adam Handling, Head Chef at the Caxton Grill at St Ermin’s Hotel in Westminster and UK Chef of the Year always uses cast iron cookware at home. “It’s the best material you can use, there’s no question, and it’s perfect for the domestic kitchen.” Having seen the Crane Cookware designs, Adam also said that the range is so practical and lends itself to many uses, as well as being simple and stylish.
Through the following;
1) Cookware Distributor Salter, who distribute throughout the UK and parts of Europe.
2) Through design shops such as Twenty Twenty One whom the designer of this collection already sells through.
3) Online through our own site and we are an accepted retailer for Not on The High Street.
4) We would also attend design and related trade shows, with a view to sell to key export markets such as the USA, Japan, China and Australia.
Use of proceeds
Funds raised will be used on the following areas:
1) Tooling & stock of the castings & the phenolic knob
3) Enameling of the product
4) packaging, website, trade shows,
ABC 1 – Professional men and women, who are focused on good quality kitchenware and take pride in their kitchen and cooking. Research by Saatchi & Saatchi identifies this group as the major demographic who purchase le Creuset products.
ABC 1- Those individuals that may not cook on a regular basis but look to purchase products that stand out from the mainstream, and something they can show to their friends/families. We intend to engage with this group through competitions to win a set of the pans, pop up events at farm shops, book shops such as Foyles, so they can win the associated cookbook we are partnering with.
Overseas Luxury Market
The top 20% of US Households by income of 100K and over equates to 24.2 million households in the US. During the recession it was largely down to this groups’ spending that drove the good economic news. A key group for us within this bracket, are the ‘luxury cocooners’, they according to the Luxury Report 2013 spend most of their money on home-related purchases.
One in four luxury goods customers are Chinese. China has bypassed Japan as second largest market for luxury goods after the USA. Customers in China are increasingly sophisticated and there is a shift from over exposed logo led brands to quality products.
Whilst the global economic contraction has impacted the Japanese consumer goods market in the last two years, there are still good market opportunities that are important particularly in kitchenware and cookery related products. Japanese consumers are increasingly conscious of both health and cost savings, which has led to the popularity of home cooked meals. Consumers are looking for unique and convenient housewares and high quality imports with distinguished design and heritage credentials.
Characteristics of target market
The Global Houseware and Specialty market has a total revenue of $49.3 billion dollars of which cookware was its most lucrative reflecting 36.6% of total market value. In 2016 the global housewares and specialty market is forecast to have a value of $67.4 billion dollars
Through a mixture of wholesaling and direct sales. This would be achieved via the following planned methods;
1) Existing retail contact in the design sector.
2) Working with Salter the Cookware Distributor.
3) Partnership with the foundry and their sales team.
5) All of the above supported by a marketing and press strategy with trade show attendance.
Through the quality of the product, its design and branding.
These three ingredients we feel certain based upon our research and development period, will create disruption against our leading competitors.