14 Oct 2004
Quality Counts(HKTDC Electronic Components & Parts, Vol 04,2004)
Vol 4, 2004
Technical Crystal Ltd
Technical Crystal Ltd has developed a thriving business manufacturing quartz crystals, oscillators, ceramic and SAW filters and resonators
A components trader turned manufacturer has developed a thriving business in quartz crystals, oscillators, ceramic and SAW filters and resonators.
Set up in 1989, Technical Crystal Ltd began manufacturing in 1992 and has flourished by focusing on quality and service rather than concentrating solely on price.
Quality is of such concern to Technical Crystal, which sources its raw materials on the Chinese mainland, that it employs a professional team to check quality and only deals with established suppliers.
"All our suppliers are long-term partners," says senior marketing executive Abby Wong. "We won't consider new suppliers even if they offer a lower price as it would be difficult to monitor their quality."
This commitment to quality also extends to manufacturing and Technical Crystal now operates a 10,000-square-metre, ISO 9002-certified plant in Shanghai that produces 10 million items a month.
These are available under Technical's own TIC brand, which is as old as the company itself and has become increasingly well-known overseas since a determined market expansion programme began in 1997.
This overseas push has been driven by a careful combination of regular advertisements in magazines and exhibitions at trade fairs, though Wong thinks these avenues are not as effective as contacting clients direct.
"Our sales teams work very hard cold-calling clients and faxing them information," Wong explains. "This might be an old-fashioned method, but it is how we secure our clients - even our overseas customers."
As a result, 40% of Technical's products go to Europe and the US for use in toys, home electrical appliances, walkie-talkies and burglar alarms.
The company's order books also benefit from its flexible minimum order requirements and prompt delivery that normally takes 3-4 weeks after order confirmation.
Wong says there has also been rising demand from small home electrical appliance manufacturers as their products become increasingly multifunctional.
"Products like electric blenders and irons that traditionally don't have a lot of functions now have clocks or timers in them, so manufacturers need our products," Wong notes.
Good customer service is also a company trump card. "One colleague followed a client for more than a year before he secured an order," Wong recalls. "We have also catered for clients who asked for a few hundred samples when a couple of dozen would do, in order to secure an order."
Quality service means there is normally little need for after-sales service, but Technical maintains close contacts with customers to provide instant attention if its products are incompatible with the clients' production line.
Wong adds that this customer-first approach continues to pay dividends in increasingly competitive times. "There are so many competitors out there, but if our clients leave us they generally come back for our quality," Wong maintains. "We have also updated the website to include more detailed product specifications, which is another service we offer our customers."
The company's R&D team continues to refine and expand the product lines, and Technical has also applied for trademark registration on the Chinese mainland in order to protect its designs and intellectual property.
"It is a tough time for us," Wong reveals. "The market has narrowed because of intense competition and this is a time when the strong will stay and the weak will be eliminated."
Wong is determined that Technical Crystal Ltd will survive and thrive by stressing quality and service throughout its product range. "We are also exhibiting at the ElectronicAsia Fair in Hong Kong this month and the Electronica Fair in Munich, Germany in November in order to expand our client base," Wong adds.
WRITTEN BY CAM CHEUNG