Industry pioneer Maurice Lay passes away

Maurice Lay

Maurice Lay, the founder and chairman of Maurice Lay Distributors Ltd and the Caple brand, has passed away.

He died peacefully at home aged 88, surrounded by his family.

In a statement announcing his passing, the company describes Lay as a giant of the appliance industry. Having left school at 14, Lay went on to work his way into senior roles at Dutch appliance company, Philips, before leaving to start his eponymous distribution business with his wife Jean.

Maurice Lay Distribution was initially formed, in 1976, to distribute Zanussi appliances which was, according to a statement, a relatively unknown entity at the time. Alongside Zanussi’s MD, George Dorman, Lay helped grow the Italian brand in the UK and became its largest customer.

After the acquisition of Zanussi by Electrolux, Lay and his family went on to create the Caple appliance brand, which is now run by Lay’s son Danny.

Lay played an active role in the company until age 85.

A tribute from the brand read: “His company and his proudest achievement remain in the safe hands of future generations of his family. He will be missed greatly by his family, his greater family in his company and friends and colleagues throughout the industry.”

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