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One Step Ahead(HKTDC Electronics, Vol 01,2006)

Zoltrix Int'l Ltd

Photo
Zoltrix Int'l Ltd's MP3 and MP4 players and recorders include the sophisticated Z-cyber MP4 Media Player (top)

Success in the fast-moving world of consumer electronics increasingly depends on staying one step ahead of the game - as Zoltrix Int'l Ltd well knows.

The 17-year-old company has produced a range of different data communications and storage products over the years, such as USB storage devices and computer peripherals, and currently specialises in MP3 and MP4 players and recorders.

Astute investment in R&D has ensured that Zoltrix has consistently developed the right product for the next generation as technology advances.

"The best-selling products are still MP3-based because MP4 is still new in the market, but you have to anticipate market trends so we've now moved on to MP4 as it also offers pictures," explains marketing executive Yolanda Leung.

Zoltrix products range from simple flash storage disks to sophisticated, multipurpose hard disk units such as the Grammy PMP, which will record movies, TV shows, music and pictures and store them in a compact hand-held unit with a built-in speaker and high quality 2.5 inch LCD screen. "If that isn't enough, there is also the option to add an FM radio to the package," Leung adds.

According to Leung, storage devices of higher power and sophistication are increasingly demanded by a market driven by advancing computer technology and the popularity of consumer products such as digital cameras.

For example, the Photo Wallet LC that the company claims is the world's smallest mobile digital photo storage system is ideal for the keen digital photographer on the move. "It has a one-inch mini 5GB hard disk that will store thousands of photos straight from memory cards without the need to first transfer them to a PC," Leung explains. "It will also store video clips and music."

Zoltrix's diverse range of products is manufactured at an ISO 9001-certified factory in Dongguan on the Chinese mainland that employs 200-300 workers.

Major product lines include USB flash drives, high performance MP3 and MP4 players, digital cameras, TV tuner products, and ISDN and 56K analogue modems. "Other products range from sound cards, radio cards, webcams and gamepads to card readers," Leung adds.

She estimates monthly production of MP3 storage devices to be around 50,000 units, with some 20,000 modems coming off production lines over the same period.

"The market is very competitive, so we have a product design house in Shenzhen because we have to make our products in many different designs," Leung explains.

Minimum orders of 1,000-2,000 units are accepted, depending on the product, and Hong Kong FOB unit prices start at US$21.50 with delivery generally taking 2-3 weeks.

Zoltrix also has arrangements with other factories on the mainland to manufacture essential accessories for its devices, which the company then markets under its own brands.

"We make loudspeakers by arrangement with other factories," Leung explains. "We also carry product lines such as MP3 speakers and headphones because we recognise the need for player accessories."

The company welcomes OEM/ODM business and has produced a variety of devices for such household names as Hitachi and Aiwa, but Leung says these orders account for only around 20% of total output.

"We're represented in most markets around the world - Pakistan, Iran and South Africa as well as Europe and the US," she says, adding that the company is strong in the Middle East and Europe and is now trying to enter the South American market. "We already have the Zoltrix brand, but are evolving to a more elegant style for which we are developing the Z-cyber brand."

The Z-cyber brand will be introduced in most international markets, but will be sold under the Zling trademark in the US via the company's dedicated sales office.

Leung notes that popular products in the US include the photo wallet, hard drive storage devices, MP3 players and the Grammy PMP.

"Our latest products include PMP devices with six-inch screens and cameras, which also offer games and many other features inside," Leung says, adding that future products will have even more features. "We have already made PMP units with DVD recording functions, and cameras will have more megapixels."

WRITTEN BY ROBERT PIERCE

Zoltrix Int'l Ltd

Rm 701, Po Hing Centre,
18 Wang Chiu Rd,
Kowloon Bay, Kowloon,
Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2753-6883
Fax: 852-22754-7915
Email:
wallace@zoltrix.com
Web: www.z-cyber.net