10 April 2007
Handy Helpers(HKTDC Electronics, Vol 01,2007)
|Chuzeng Electrical Products Ltd supplies a two-slice toaster featuring a crumb tray|
There's an enormous range of electrical appliances available today that not only makes life easier for the busy wife and mother, but also increases overall efficiency throughout the home.
Equally important for buyers is the fact that this ever-expanding range of home appliances is a steady seller in all markets, especially if it comes from Hong Kong.
Well-established local companies such as Tung Ngai Plastic Mfg Co Ltd produce a number of kitchen appliances, including juice extractors, blenders, food processors and citrus juicers.
"Juice extractors are our most popular product and the UK is our most successful market," says general manager John Chan, adding "we and Japan difficult to penetrate because Japanese companies are more conservative as well as protective of their market."
He believes that the industry is going through a "fashion" phase where the trend is to match the product with the interior design of the household. "Fashion changes seasonally, which is going to make a product's stock-keeping unit life cycle even shorter," Chan notes.
Twenty-nine-year-old Tung Ngai, which manufactures for such household names as Kenwood, Delonghi and Black & Decker, requires minimum order quantities of one TEU delivered 60-90 days after order confirrmation.
Steam irons are the specialty of Goodway Electrical Co Ltd, which exports to the US and Western Europe. "As far as other markets are concerned, we and South Africa very difficult to penetrate because of extreme price sensitivity," marketing director Simon Wong explains.
The 25-year-old company manufactures 600,000 steam irons a month at a 500,000-square-foot, 2,000-worker factory in Shenzhen on the Chinese mainland.
The iF Product Design 2007 award winner, which has its own Goodway brand, will also supply minimum orders of 3,000 units 30-45 days after order confirrmation.
Another firm that has unlocked the value of its own brand is Multi Prosperous Ltd, which manufactures several multifunction rice cookers and stew cookers that bear the Famous badge.
The 15-year-old company, which also manufactures under the Accurus, Excel, Noble and Sigma brands, numbers handy multifunction stew cookers and ultrasonic ionizers and humidifiers among its best sellers.
"Our most successful markets are the UK and Hong Kong," explains export manager William Fong, adding that minimum orders and delivery times are available on request. "We plan to enhance our R&D operations, as well as our merchandising and marketing."
Cooking up a storm in American, Canadian and Australian kitchens are the electric stoves, pizza ovens and toasters produced by Chuzeng Electrical Products Ltd.
The six-year-old firm's 200 workers at its 70,000-square-foot factory in Shenzhen produce 120,000 electrical items each month, explains manager Auyeung Wai.
"We have more than 20 stove models, ranging from a deluxe stainless steel body stove with double cast-iron elements to an entry-level single burner for budget-conscious buyers," he says.
Auyeung claims that Chuzeng Electrical was also one of the first manufacturers to introduce a household pizza oven to the kitchen appliance market. "We have a minimum order quantity of 5,000 pieces delivered approximately 45 days from confirrmation," Auyeung says.
Similarly focused is Sunny Electronic Co Ltd, which manufactures food processors, blenders, choppers, cookie presses, cheese graters and juice extractors.
However, marketing executive Frankie Chung says juice extractors are the 34-year-old company's most successful line in its main markets, Europe, the US and Japan. "The market trend is good design and high-quality products," Cheung observes, noting that Sunny has its own Multi brand.
Chung adds that Sunny can produce 100,000 units a month and requires minimum orders of one FEU delivered 45 days after order confirrmation.
Taking a more esoteric approach is Cheung Hing Int'l Electrical Products Ltd, which produces fan heaters and hair-dryers and also makes a popular foot massager that is its most successful product.
"Western Europe is by far our biggest market, but we plan to introduce between eight and 12 new items this year," says marketing manager Eric Ting. "Some are already under development and will be displayed at trade shows this month and in October."
All Cheung Hing's products are manufactured at its 70,000-square-metre factory in Shenzhen that is ISO 9001-certifed and also meets GS, CE and RoHS standards.
They are sold throughout Europe, Asia, the mainland, the Middle East, Australia and the US in minimum order quantities of 2,000 units delivered 45-50 days after confirrmation.
Despite this success, Ting says that the increasing exposure of mainland domestic manufacturers means many of Cheung Hing's current customers may consider similar items at a lower cost.
"We cannot avoid the strong competition from low-cost producers, but we must perform well and launch new products to achieve business growth," Ting concludes.
This could be the mantra of Hong Kong home appliance manufacturers, who have long specialised in providing high-quality, competitively-priced handy helpers for households worldwide.
Tung Ngai Plastic Mfg Co Ltd
Flats A & B, 9/F
City Ind Complex
116-122 Kwok Shui Rd
Kwai Chung, New Territories