13 April 2007
Clever Collages(HKTDC Fashion - Leather Goods & Bags, Vol 02,2007)
Euro Pacific Development Ltd
|Euro Pacific Development Ltd aims to make the humble patchwork leather bag fashionable again|
Anyone who thinks patchwork leather bags are passm had better think again, as Euro Pacific Development Ltd has decided to give patchwork a facelift. "Patchwork leather bags may be considered old-fashioned, but there is always a demand in the market," says director Raymond Wu, adding that his company has been in the business for more than a decade, although the Euro Pacific name was only registered in 2005.
He believes that the patchwork leather bag has experienced a strong resurgence in the past two years, a trend best illustrated by Euro Pacific's record order of one million pieces placed by a European buyer in 2006.
Nevertheless, Wu is always careful to keep one step ahead of the competition, and a trade show last year inspired him to rejuvenate the traditional appeal of patchwork leather bags.
"I came across some PU fashion bags that were priced between US$6-12 FOB per piece, which was really expensive when compared to our genuine leather patchwork bags priced at US$3 each," he exclaims.
Wu reasoned that it was the bags' modern aspect which boosted the price, so he decided to try modernising the design of Euro Pacific's patchwork leather bags.
"Our design and product development teams have been working full steam over the last few months, striving to give our patchwork leather handbags an original twist by experimenting with new styling details and different material combinations," he explains.
Euro Pacific launched its new collection at the Asia Pacific Leather Fair in Hong Kong in March, offering them at around US$4-6 FOB Shanghai per piece.
Selections included large handbags enlivened with fashionable details, including a nouveau combination of leather patchwork in metallic colours and different finishing, to project a more vibrant and youthful image.
Wu is confident that the new collections will help maintain Euro Pacific's development as both an OEM and an ODM.
"We have a very resourceful design team which creates 500-600 designs annually for our products, including the patchwork leather handbags we produce, and a profusion of wallets, briefcases and luggage which we outsource to other manufacturers for production," he notes.
Euro Pacific also enjoys another edge in the competitive patchwork handbag business - its main supplier of scrap leather is situated in the same area as its factory in Zhejiang Province on the Chinese mainland.
"This means an abundant choice of scrap leather which our design team can explore," Wu says. "Since we are the biggest patchwork leather handbag factory in the area, we also enjoy the advantage of getting the best material at a very good price."
Measuring 12,000 square metres and equipped with newly-installed advanced machinery, Euro Pacific's factory employs 300 skilled workers who produce 200,000 patchwork handbags per month.
"The production management team in our factory is comprised mostly of experienced Hong Kong staff, which gives our buyers confidence that we offer leather bags of distinctive quality and on-time delivery," Wu insists.
Euro Pacific requires a minimum order of 3,000 pieces and 400 pieces per style for its patchwork leather handbags, which can be delivered in 60 days.
Wu points out that the firm has set its minimum order quantity "quite low" as Euro Pacific understands that some customers like to place trial orders to evaluate quality and service before establishing a long-term relationship.
Moreover, Euro Pacific has successfully expanded its market by placing advertisements in trade magazines and participating in international trade fairs.
Today, the company is shipping its products to more countries in Europe, as well as the US and Australia. "We hope that taking the patchwork bag to the fashion stage will help us to make a big noise in the business, as well as bring us new sales opportunities and more customers from different parts of the world," Wu concludes.
TEXT BY WINNIE HUI
Euro Pacific Development Ltd
Rm 702, Times Tower,
928 Cheung Sha Wan Rd,
Kowloon, Hong Kong