6 July 2007
Perseverance Pays(HKTDC Gifts, Premium & Stationery, Vol 03,2007)
|One of Asia's leading manufacturers of labels and paper products, Advance Label Ltd exports to the US, Europe and Japan|
Persistence has certainly paid off for Advance Label Ltd, which has grown from a minor print shop in 1967 to become one of Asia's leading manufacturers of labels and paper products.
Head of export sales development Christy Wong says the two Law brothers, who started the business 40 years ago, balanced each other perfectly as one was very astute in salesmanship and marketing while the other was an unusually capable engineer and technician.
"Because of their persistence, the company grew into a major exporter with an international client base," she explains. "Our philosophy has always remained the same - to deliver the best quality products in the fastest possible time at competitive prices."
Advance Label's product range includes printing adhesive labels for toys, food, household products, consumer goods, electrical appliances and licensed sticker products.
However, Advance Label has successfully expanded its export business by including craft and DIY items in its product catalogue. "The majority of our products is distributed to the US, Europe and Japan markets," Wong adds.
The company's factory in Shenzhen covers 250,000 square feet and employs 800 staff, a number which swells to 1,000-plus at peak times. "We also house the latest-state-of the-art equipment," Wong claims.
She maintains that Advance Label's key competitive advantage is that the company does "everything in-house" and utilises offset, silkscreen and letterpress technologies.
"Our sophisticated machines cover the entire spectrum of the printing process from colour electronic pre-press, printing, laminating, embossing and hot foil stamping to die-cutting and binding," Wong explains.
Advance Label's other competitive advantages include professional trading services, prompt delivery and an experienced R&D department. "We also provide good service and reputation, international approvals and a large product line that uses brand-name components," Wong adds.
Advance Label, which has its own AHA! and Craft Lover brands, is also happy to accept OEM and ODM orders. "We produce more than 300,000 items a month," Wong notes, adding that the company exports 45% of its products in minimum order quantities of 1,000-5,000 units.
The company prides itself on using high-quality components from North America, Western Europe, Japan and Taiwan in its OEM products, which it can tailor-make from scratch. "We offer design services and can design and manufacture new models," Wong says. "We can even design and manufacture a buyer's logo."
Clearly, the 40-year-old company has come a long way since it first started operations by specialising in adhesive labels.
"Now we mass-produce a wide range of label and paper products such as stickers, labels, luggage tags, hang tags, tattoos, epoxy stickers, holographic stickers, memo pads, airline boarding passes, transfers and decals, puffy stickers, notebooks, children playing/matching cards, puzzles, lenticulars, membrane switch panels, UL labels and static cling vinyl products," Wong says.
Advance Label also creates various kinds of OBM items like scrapbook kits, photo albums, DIY card kits and many craft products for nimble-fingered children and housewives.
"In addition to our core sticker and label business, our craft items are very popular and have received many enquiries," Wong says. "We developed scrapbook kits a few years ago and our designs reflect the tastes of major markets worldwide."
Other popular lines include ODM craft items. "One of our latest and hottest items is die-cut chipboard, which are cardboard alphabets that are popular for DIY photo album decoration and home decoration," Wong explains.
Advance Label will even develop and supply samples at buyer's request. "We also offer export documents, customs, insurance for CIF, quality inspection and shipping services," Wong adds.
Seeking out new trends and concepts is one of Advance Label's top priorities, and its design and marketing staff travel overseas often in search of inspiration.
"We are long-time exhibitors at Hong Kong Trade Development Council exhibitions such as the Hong Kong Gifts and Premium Fair and the Hong Kong International Printing and Packaging Fair, and are also represented at trade fairs and hobby shows such as the National Stationery Show in New York and the Spring Fair in Birmingham," says Wong.
She adds that Advance Label always strives for the best and keeps moving forward. "We focus on total customer satisfaction and aim to grow together with our customers by anticipating and capitalising on market trends," Wong concludes. "We are always well-equipped and equally well-prepared to meet every new challenge."
TEXT BY GEOFFREY SOMERS
Advance Label Ltd