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Timely Supplies(HKTDC Houseware, Vol 01,2009)

Success Story

Sourcing suppliers through different channels is of paramount importance in any business - none more so than the Swiss watch industry

Timepiece aficionados paying top prices for gold watches, wristwatches, stop watches and pocket watches demand the finest components anad parts.

This delicate point is definitely not lost on watch connoisseur Domenico Granito, who purchased 1923-founded Swiss watch maker ONSA in 1989 and took the helm of a company renowned for its avant-garde philosophy and eagerness to innovate new technology and product designs.

"We want to be ahead of the trend and therefore source new products, meet new suppliers and establish new contacts with newcomers through http://www.hktdc.com/," the ONSA Managing Director explains.

Acting as a 'middle man', http://www.hktdc.com/ allows Mr Granito to select suitable suppliers from an enormous pool. "Nowadays, the practice is to meet new suppliers in the cyber world first and then discuss details face-to-face later," he says. "The http://www.hktdc.com/ website is a very good, reliable and cost-effective place to establish first contact with potential suppliers."

Mr Granito believes http://www.hktdc.com/ fulfils his criteria for an ideal online sourcing platform, containing interesting new products and related detailed information and aiding easy communication between buyers and suppliers. "It is a good starting point for both parties to get to know each other and build contacts for the future," he adds.

The most effective and direct way is to preview potential suppliers at http://www.hktdc.com/ before meeting them in person at the HKTDC Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair.

"A preview of the suppliers and exhibitors at http://www.hktdc.com/ before the fair starts can help shorten the whole business to one week, because the whole sourcing exercise is more targeted," Mr Granito explains.

"If I couldn't conduct any online previews, I would need to stay in Hong Kong for at least 2-3 weeks, searching for and making appointments with possible suppliers."

Cost obviously plays an important part in running a business, and conducting online conferences with suppliers may eventually replace traditional face-to-face business negotiations in order to reduce expenses.

Mr Granito agrees that sourcing suitable suppliers through online platforms will become a big trend in the future. "Markets change every minute, therefore we have to accept new ways of doing business - simply following the old track is meaningless," he insists. "We should take one step forward, looking at new things to broaden our vision."

That's why he utilises HKTDC's comprehensive range of services, making use of product magazines to source new suppliers, attending the HKTDC Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair to meet suppliers and researching industry developments through http://www.hktdc.com/.

Recently, http://www.hktdc.com/ has been revamped into an even more powerful sourcing platform featuring very clean and clear interface design and excellent organisation of both content and functions.

Ultimately, http://www.hktdc.com/ closely reflects current market needs and simultaneously monitors the future development of online trading activities, thus offering users a new, efficient and extremely effective sourcing experience.

Sourcing hot products

Want to know the hottest products in the market? Check http://www.hktdc.com/, which gathers the most popular and up-to-date products from all over the world, allowing buyers to get fast first-hand information on the latest product trends. Buyers who are going to visit HKTDC trade fairs can even meet exhibitors and preview products online - saving time at the fair!

Precise product search

More than 5,000 product categories guarantee quick and accurate product searches at http://www.hktdc.com/. Searches can also be refined by multiple criteria such as materials, brands and certifications, taking the hassle out of finding the perfect product.

Verification guarantees confidence

Only http://www.hktdc.com/ offers verification by recognised third parties such as D&B, Panjiva and PIERS, which confirm the accuracy and validity of supplier information on the HKTDC website and thus enhance buyers' sourcing confidence.

Meet suppliers before HKTDC trade fairs

Buyers who use http://www.hktdc.com/ can enjoy a free matching service that helps them zero in on specific products, saving time in meeting relevant suppliers at the fair. Before or during the fair, buyers can get a list of matching exhibitors and suppliers that consists of supplier company information, booth numbers (if applicable), product names and photos.