European Cleaning & Hygiene Awards 2018 winner - Kenter

5th of April 2019
European Cleaning & Hygiene Awards 2018 winner - Kenter

Today’s distributors are increasingly being expected to go above and beyond the traditional role of supplier. Kenter does just that – which is why the company won the European Cleaning & Hygiene Award for Distributor Excellence in Added Value in Berlin, according to ceo Rainer Kenter.

There was once a time when distributors were simply expected to fulfil the traditional role of supplier. But today’s customers are demanding more and more from their distributor.

For example, they are increasingly seeking advice on which products to choose and which systems are deemed to be the most sustainable. They are also tapping into the distributor’s knowledge of topics such as cost-in-use, health and safety and supply chain efficiencies.

And on top of this, distributors are being expected to accurately identify their clients’ cleaning and building maintenance needs using a combination of modern technology and specialist knowledge.
Many suppliers have embraced this challenge and are excelling themselves in living up to their customers’ expectations. And Kenter is one such company.

Founded in Germany in 1975, the organisation has come up with the Kenter Next concept which seeks to bring together the solutions to four major issues that are currently facing the cleaning industry. The company then strives to incorporate these solutions into its working model.

“We identified the four key challenges of the future as being: the need to increase productivity; the importance of optimising workflow; the requirement to come up with digital working methods and the need to incorporate smart sustainable solutions,” said ceo and owner Rainer Kenter.

“We then devised the Kenter Next system which strives to come up with solutions to all these four challenges. And the result is a system that is designed to add value to both our customers and their contract cleaners.”

The aim of Kenter Next is to incorporate solutions to at least two of the four “future challenges” into every product, tool and system supplied by the company.

“For example, the iMop - which was invented by ourselves together with our business partner Rudolf Franke - combines increased productivity with the use of very little water and reduced chemical consumption,” said Kenter. “This leads to many thousands of litres of water and chemicals being saved per machine each year.

“Another example is the Comac Non-Stop-Cleaning machine. The idea was born nine years ago to construct a machine that would be capable of cleaning for a week at a time without having to change the water.

“We combine this technology with biotech cleaning products to challenge bad smells while also providing an excellent cleaning action, even though we are working with recycled water instead of fresh water.”

Kenter believes the changing face of the industry has led to the need for more innovative systems and working methods. “We believe it is no longer enough to simply offer our customers a choice of products plus a basic level of service as we go forward to face the challenges of the future,” he said. “Our customers need tailor-made solutions which will give them an advantage over the competition.”

The company was shortlisted for European Cleaning & Hygiene Awards in 2016 and 2017 but this is the first time it has actually won. “I think it was the fact that we combined multiple Innovations in an unusual way and which worked to our customers’ advantage that earned us the Distributors – Excellence in Added Value award,” said Kenter.

“Being shortlisted in 2016 and 2017 motivated us to carry on with our strategy, and winning in 2018 has made us very proud. It was a reward for the whole team.”

European Cleaning & Hygiene Awards judge and ECJ editor Michelle Marshall says she liked the way Kenter considered its customers’ practical needs and developed a package solution that took care of several key aspects. “It’s a holistic approach that seeks to meet tomorrow’s requirements while also taking advantage of today’s opportunities,” she said.

So, does Kenter believe that its business model provides a blueprint for distributors of the future? “Yes, absolutely – provided those distributors are ready to tackle tomorrow’s challenges and invest in systems, people, logistics and know-how,” he said.

The European Cleaning & Hygiene Awards 2019 will be held in London on October 17 and are now open for entry. Visit


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