The Korea Herald


Samsung, LG can’t be No. 1 in Europe: Miele

By Korea Herald

Published : April 22, 2013 - 19:52

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Reinhard Zinkann, head of Miele Reinhard Zinkann, head of Miele
SARDINIA, Italy ― Miele, a leading German high-end home appliance maker, finds it hard to believe that Samsung and LG will lead the markets in Europe by 2015.

“(Samsung and LG) have advantage of size, their knowledge in electronics, but we’ll see if they will make it to No. 1,” Miele head Reinhard Zinkann said at the IFA Global Conference, adding that he had “certain doubts.”

He also prodded the Korean brands to stop tooting their own horn and setting their standards too high, calling on them not to “shout out too loudly” about what they want to be.

Miele is one of Europe’s most premium brands in the home appliance market, known for its value and durability. The company is a family business, established by Zinkann’s great-grandfather more than 100 years ago.

Europe is where, traditionally, homegrown brands have a strong lead. For Miele, up to 90 percent of its sales come from Europe.

Samsung and LG, top players in the home appliance field globally, have vowed to buck this trend, but it won’t be easy, mainly because the two have a broad product spectrum and cannot offer truly distinguished goods.

“LG and Samsung are too broad to be an absolutely premium brand, and they are distributed very broadly. Miele is something special,” Zinkann said.

He did acknowledge, however, that the two had been competing fiercely and that Miele took them seriously.

“Everything is due to change,” he said. “But we are not afraid of them. We are not in fear because we know what we can be the best in and where we can be successful.” 

By Kim Ji-hyun, Korea Herald correspondent