My name is Simon Bennett. My wife Meg and I are the directors of Astute New Zealand Ltd. Our company is one of this country’s many small businesses working hard to enrich our communities and raise our families. We are based in beautiful Mangawhai, Northland.
Our company, formed in 2010, is predominantly responsible for importing and distributing Reflections Splashback and Wall Panel, a glass splashback alternative first offered in Australia before coming to New Zealand.
I have been a professional, trade certified floor and wall tiler for the past 15 years. My work placed me in homes at the time when kitchens are being installed and hence I have tiled hundreds of splashbacks over the years. My impression was that the homeowner had the choice of tile, stainless steel, stone or glass. That was it. When I was introduced to the Reflection Splashback panel, I immediately thought a further choice for the homeowner had to have some merit. I knew the cost of tile and stone through first-hand experience. I also knew glass is very expensive, especially once you start requiring cutouts for power points and cutting around cabinetry. Stainless steel is also expensive.
As I looked at Reflection Splashbacks closely, I found that they could be measured and cut onsite to whatever shape was required, and that cut-outs could be achieved with a jigsaw. That they could be installed by a cabinetmaker or even DIYs. They looked amazing, durable and complied with the As/NZS codes to enable it to be used behind Gas Hobbs. And most cool of all, Reflection Splashbacks could be installed at just over half the price of glass.
I felt this was a no brainer and thought the New Zealand Consumer deserved to have another great option. The rest is history so to speak.