The coffee market is waking up after a challenging two-year period, and Rancilio Australia wants the industry to know that it’s open for business.
With the start of a new year and renewed optimism in the Australian coffee market for a return to business as usual, Rancilio Australasia General Manager Paul O’Brien is fuelled with excitement for what lies ahead.
“We know roasters and cafés have really struggled over the past two years, but the message we want to convey to them, is that we’re here to support them. Rancilio is open for business. We want to engage in conversations and already there’s a real buzz about the opportunities we can partner on,” Paul says.
Experiencing little to no supply chain delays over the past year, in what Paul describes as “an extremely vigilant production process” at the manufacturer’s Milan base in Italy, means Rancilio Australia is in a fortunate position to assist new and existing customers with available equipment.
“Milan was the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak, but even through the thick of it, our production has not stopped. We have managed with skeleton staff the whole way through. We had stock in our Melbourne warehouses the entire time, and have been ordering regular containers without delay,” Paul says.
“What this means, is that we have good stock of both machines and spare parts across Australia, including our range of premium grinders, homeline machines and specialty models. It’s all available today and we are open for business.”
Rancilio Australia has been busy building local capability to support its products and customers. Recently hiring a dedicated technical support manager based in Melbourne, to provide technical assistance for the range nationally. It also has a parts and labour warranty, meaning the manufacturer will cover each machine in its range for 12 months.
A large reason Paul says Rancilio has remained busy throughout the past year, is thanks to the backing of Moffat Group, which it joined in November 2020 and established Rancilio Group Australasia. Both companies belong to Ali Group, one of the largest leaders in the global foodservice equipment industry. Paul says the partnership with the “powerhouse company” has provided the brand with the capability to dream big.
“They’re an absolutely powerhouse which has helped Rancilio Group Australasia guarantee the highest customer care to support, distribute, and develop our portfolio of products across Australia and New Zealand,” Paul says.
This includes Rancilio Australia supporting the national rollout of Jack’s Café under the Hungry Jacks brand, installing more than 350 Classe 7 isteam machines across the country. Paul says this was no mean feat amid a two-year global pandemic.
The Rancilio Classe 7 continues to be the brand’s biggest seller globally. Paul says the model is “everything to everybody at the right price point” with the best balance of performance and reliability which the company is renowned for.
An updated Classe 7 model will be launched in Q3 of 2022 as part of a full range refresh coming later in the year. This includes a number of barista-focused features such as the RS1-style group handle from the Rancilio Specialty brand, which is being rolled out across Rancilio’s entire range.
For the Australian specialty market, Paul is excited to see the growth of the RS1 espresso machine, which now comes with an optional personalisation platform for customers to modify with wood panelling, powder coating and logo customisation right from the Rancilio factory in Milan.
“Most manufactures import the machine, unbox them, remove multiple panels and fittings before shipping to powder coating, while trying not to scratch the panels when reassembling. It can be a long and delicate process that takes anywhere from two to six weeks – and that’s on top of any supply chain delays,” Paul says. “So, to have an RS1 already customised with timber features, powder coating, company logos, straight out of the box when it arrives in Australia – all to ISO 9001 quality management standards – it’s definitely a time and money saver for local businsses.
All Rancilio single boiler commercial machines including the Classe 7 now come with Steady Brew technology at no additional cost. The Rancilio-patented thermal control system keeps water temperature stable during extraction and guarantees exact thermal precision, reliability, and maximum repeatability during work peaks and in low-usage conditions.
Another significant development is the RS1 passing the rigorous Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) testing standards, thereby obtaining the title of an SCA Certified Espresso Machine. Compliance testing was conducted in October 2021 at Fiera Milano in Italy and the Rancilio team is thrilled with the result.
“This is a big deal and not easily achieved. Talk is cheap, so for us to have SCA approval and meet its standards with the tick of approval on our specifications and test methods is a real badge of honour for Rancilio, and a nod to the quality and ability of the RS1,” Paul says.
Also excelling in the past year has been a massive demand for the Rancilio’s Silvia Pro X dual boiler Homeline machine since it was launched at Host Milan.
“This model is a big ticket item. Its popularity has completely blown me away. What’s impressive, is that Rancilio R&D has listened to lots of global feedback and market needs on the original Silvio Pro, and responded in the middle of the pandemic with the Pro X and a suite of functional changes,” he says.
Such modifications include a soft pre-infusion, allowing the user to program a soft pre-infusion between zero to three seconds to obtain the most flavour out of the extraction. Changes also include an automatic purge after extraction, the addition of a pressure gauge, bigger baskets, addition of the RS1-style group handle, and wider colour availability, including black, white, and hot pink.
The model has been in production since February, with shipment already on its way to Australia with scheduled Q2 arrival.
The model has also been recognised with World Barista Championship (WBC) compliant thermal stability. Paul says the fact that all Rancilio machines now have this tag to certify the thermal temperature process, including its high-end domestic model, is a real sign of the company’s commitment to innovation and achieving best performance standards.
“Rancilio has been committed to innovation in the middle of the pandemic, and I’m so excited to be sharing some next-level updates that are pushing the brand forward,” Paul says.
“All that’s left to do, is connect with the market, and engage with cafés and roasters who are seeking something different. I invite them to cease the opportunity of the industry opening back up and know that we’re here to work with them and offer local support and locally available stock with a brand that is growing on so many levels. We’re open for business.”
For more information, visit www.ranciliogroup.com.au
This article appears in the April 2022 edition of BeanScene. Subscribe HERE.