1 Feb 2002
Best Foot Forward(HKTDC Fashion - Footwear, Vol 02,2002)
Vol 2, 2002
Best Foot Forward
Casual Elegance Afoot
|The Strikers brand, from Crest Ltd, wins trust among buyers in the company's main markets, including Latin America, Europe and the Middle East.|
A VARIETY of footwear is always important so consumers can match shoes to occasions: opting for dressy, casual, or sporty, as circumstances require. Crest Ltd offers an array of footwear, including sports shoes, ladies' fashion sandals or casual thongs and men's dress shoes.
"Eventually, we want to make Crest a one-stop shop for footwear and have a full range available for customers," says marketing manager Vishal Sakhrani.
Founded in 1992, Crest began as a trading company and manufacturer. "For the past five years or so, we have concentrated on footwear. We began with sports shoes, then added ladies' shoes and are coming out with men's classic dress shoes later this year," says Sakhrani.
"We aim to expand into different types of footwear for our main markets in Latin America, Europe and the Middle East," he adds.
Crest also creates for chain stores in some markets and uses its own Strikers label. "We give our customers exclusivity for our brand name, if they want it, while we also produce for other brands," says Sakhrani.
"We have a joint venture with two factories on the Chinese mainland. One is in Fujian and produces our sports shoes. The other is in Guangdong Province and makes our ladies' shoes."
The Fujian site, with eight production lines, produces 500,000 pairs per month. Four lines in Guangdong can handle 400,000 pairs.
Crest's shoes are for the middle portion of the market. The average unit price for sports shoes with TPR soles is US$5 a pair FOB Hong Kong. Those with phylon soles are about US$7.50 per pair.
Raw materials come from the Chinese mainland and Taiwan. Finished products are ready for shipment within 45 days.
"Industry competition is very tough, and some people are really lowering prices. We don't want to do that, especially at the cost of quality. Our goal is to maintain quality while developing new products," Sakhrani says.
The company's business philosophy doesn't stop at quality and customer service is another priority.
"We are in a service industry and must take care of clients, which is one of our strong points. Our return rate is very high. Even apart from regular customers, almost every buyer re-orders at least twice," Sakhrani adds.
Crest is eager to become more active in South Africa and Eastern Europe. "We always look to expand, try something new and stay ahead because remaining competitive is very important," Sakhrani says.
"Trends constantly change, so we watch different markets and strive to ensure both high quality and suitable designs."
18/F, Eu Yan Sang Tower,
11-15 Chatham Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui,
Kowloon, Hong Kong
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