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First Choice Acquires Combi Ovens Specialist Combico (UK) Ltd

28th March 2014

Combico (UK) Ltd, the specialist service training and spare parts provider for Rational combi ovens, has been acquired by First Choice Catering Spares Ltd. Stocks of spares will be transferred to the Cannock premises of First Choice to proudly recognise First Choice as the largest supplier of Rational spare parts, and now service training provider, in the UK.

The Combico name will live on however, becoming the specialist engineer training arm of First Choice. Steve Weston, founder of Combico (UK) Ltd, will continue to run the engineers training courses for Rational combi ovens already planned for this year with the venue relocating to Cannock.

Steve Weston says, ‘The amalgamation of Combico UK Ltd with First Choice Catering Equipment Spares Ltd is the inevitable consequence of two determined and committed companies striving to succeed in a similar market place. We are specialised businesses dedicated to supporting the commercial catering industry service companies.

“Each business has an individual focus and provides a unique service. Together we set a clear benchmark for service and quality in the commercial catering spares industry. When it comes to providing technical support and prompt spares service for Rational cooking appliances we are now clearly the best option.’

‘The two businesses have a natural synergy’, explains John Whitehouse, ‘and combining our resources is a win-win for the customers of both companies’.

The highly regarded Combico training courses will now find a new home at the well-equipped First Choice Training Centre at the heart of the country, close to the national motorway network. Customers of both companies will also gain access to an even larger stock of Rational OEM spares available for next day delivery when ordered by 5.00pm.

Combico UK is a business that has focussed on the lifetime service and maintenance of the range of SelfCooking Centres and combi ovens manufactured by Rational Ag of Landsberg Germany. The company has built a unique partnership with the manufacturer as an appointed Service Training and Spares Partner and has been approved as a National Technical Training Centre for service technicians.

First Choice plan to continue this close co-operation with Rational and Lee Norton, UK Managing Director of Rational says ‘Combico has been a very reliable partner to Rational over the years and provided excellent training to our customers and partners.

The acquisition by First Choice makes sense and the combination of the existing product knowledge coupled with the more central location for training can only be a benefit for our customers. First Choice already provide great service for the supply of spare parts and cleaning products to our customers and the additional benefit of training will further extend the level of support they give.’

First Choice is now in its’ 15th year and has steadily grown in size to become the leading independent supplier of spare parts to the UK catering market. The union between First Choice and Combico will hail the beginning of a new era, as First Choice expand their services into the engineer training sector.

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