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Comfort To Boot (HKTDC Fashion - Footwear, Vol 01,2001)

Vol 1, 2001





PRODUCT FEATURES

Comfort To Boot
Fashion Boots

Setting The Pace
Pattern-Print Shoes

First Steps
Babies Shoes

Comfort To Boot

Fashion Boots

DESIGN remains the top priority for Hong Kong-based manufacturers of fashion boots, but they increasingly opt to add reassuring elements of comfort to their creations.

P&T Trading Co demonstrates to the world that it ranks comfort highly by manufacturing its own outer soles. "We began doing this because with our children's boots, the focus is on comfort, and we wanted every part of the boots as soft as possible," said the company's manager, Christina Wong.

Although P&T's product range also includes dress shoes, casual shoes and fashion boots for ladies and children, the 11-year-old enterprise targets children with model VIT-F005-1936, a red PU pair with Nylex inner linings and soles, which is FOB Hong Kong priced at US$6.50. The inch-high outer soles are made of TPR.

Also featured are: black PU model VIT-C79-2041, FOB Hong Kong priced at US$5.50; the red PU model VIT-DLB72-004, at US$5.50; and the yellow suede model VIT-C58-1896, at US$5.70.

Each year P&T launches 100 designs. Not merely the creations of a design team, these arise from input by every member of the company's staff and by representatives from an 800-worker, four-storey factory in Dongguan on the Chinese mainland. The factory produces 150,000 pairs per month.

P&T sources materials directly from Taiwan to enhance production control. Minimum order is 1,500 pairs, with shipment after 40 days to major markets in Japan, South Korea, France and Egypt.

Ten-year-old Ahead Footwear Mfr (HK) Co Ltd, while aiming for comfort on the inside, stresses outside looks. Aside from ladies' fashion boots, this company makes fashion shoes, sandals and comfort shoes for ladies, plus children's shoes.

"We have produced shoes for hospitals, which gives us experience creating comfortable shoes," says general manager Helena Chan.

Model SL-4002, FOB Hong Kong priced at US$17-18, is a checker-patterned leather creation with laser-print ABS heels. Each boot, 4-12 inches high, resembles a lady's leg in stockings inside an evening shoe.

Checker-patterned models SL-4000 and SL-4001, plus black cowhide model SL-4003, are each FOB priced at US$16-17.For inside linings,buyers can request materials of their choice.

Heels command special attention for Ahead's designers in Hong Kong. "You need good quality ABS that will not break or crack, so we source directly from Taiwan," says Chan.

Usual production at the company's 200-worker, 20,000-square-foot factory in Guangzhou on the Chinese mainland is 15,000 pairs per month, although full capacity is 24,000 pairs. Minimum order is 300 pairs per style, with 30-day delivery time to major markets in the US, the Middle East, South Africa and Australia.

Magna Marvin Ltd takes pride in using high-quality materials. "We always source leather with a smooth upper part. That shows it is high quality," says director Wendy Leung. The company secures cowhide, PU and cow suede through agents on the Chinese mainland who, in turn, source from the US and Argentina.

Model L2381 is a pair of 16-inch, cowhide fashion boots with 21/2-inch PVC heels topped with cowhide. This model, FOB priced at US$17-20, features Lycra inner lining. Another model, L2351, identical except in height, measures 61/2 inches and is FOB priced at US$11-13.

Sixteen-year-old Magna Marvin targets buyers in Japan, the US and the UK. Its monthly production of 10,000 pairs, at an 1,800-square-metre, 110-worker factory at Shenzhen on the Chinese mainland, involves 70% OEM work and 30% using the company's own designs.

Magna Marvin's designers in Hong Kong find inspiration in Japanese fashions. "We try to follow the trends," says Leung. The company applies the same philosophy to its casual shoes, sandals and pumps for ladies and children.

Top Sun Mfg Co Ltd, an eight-year-old maker of men's, ladies' and children's boots, focuses on design. Its team includes German and Italian designers. The German focuses on comfort and the Italian on fashion.

"European designers understand the European market better than anyone else," says Top Sun manager Dorothy Goh. The company's materials are from Italy.

Each year, Top Sun creates 5-10 groups of new designs, generating monthly production of 120,000 pairs at the company's 100,000-square-foot factory employing more than 1,000 workers in Dongguan.

Shown here is model B409, a cowhide ankle boot for ladies, featuring textile and foam inside lining, nylon shoelaces and TPR outer soles, FOB Hong Kong priced at US$12. If buyers opt for synthetic leather, the price falls to US$7.50.

Also featured is embossed leather model B452, a high boot for ladies, FOB priced at US$19.50. Minimum order is 800-1,500 pairs. The main markets are Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand.

WRITTEN BY TAMARA CHEUNG

Contact Details

Ahead Footwear Mfr (HK) Co Ltd
14/F, Crawford Tower
99 Jervois St
Sheung Wan, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2410-9531
Fax: 852-2541-8418
E-mail: ahead@HKTRADE.com

Circle Shoes Co Ltd
G/F, 4 Pak Kung St, Hung Hom
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2362-3983
Fax: 852-2774-4206
E-mail: circleco@netvigator.com

Francas Enterprise
14/F, Unit A
Tsuen Tung Fty Bldg
38-40 Chai Wan Kok St
Tsuen Wan
New Territories, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2408-3303
Fax: 852-2408-3202
E-mail: francas@netvigator.com

Magna Marvin Ltd
12/F, Flat 1
Laurels Ind Centre
32 Tai Yau St, San Po Kong
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2603-0229
Fax: 852-2602-7170
E-mail: magna@i-cable.com

P & T Trading Co
2/F, 72 To Kwa Wan Rd
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2333-4777
Fax: 852-2764-6645
E-mail: pandt@netvigator.com

Top Sun Mfg Co Ltd
3/F, Units 13-14
Hong Leong Plaza
33 Lok Yip Rd
On Lok Tsuen, Fanling
New Territories, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2675-0702
Fax: 852-2675-0039
E-mail: topsun@netvigator.com

Welldone Shoes Co
Rm 601, Kincheng Comm Centre
412-420 Castle Peak Rd
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2370-0823
Fax: 852-2748-1326
E-mail: welldon@hkstar.com


Setting The Pace

Pattern-Print Shoes

PATTERN-print footwear made from synthetic materials, especially PU, is often seen as a reasonably priced way to make a fashion statement. For many years such shoes and boots have been manufactured and exported by Hong Kong companies. The range of patterns and styles shows no sign of diminishing.

A good example comes from Shui Cheong Hong Enterprise Ltd, which has made casual shoes, sports shoes, sandals and slippers under the Kanis brand since 1975, most recently hand-in-hand with a joint-venture partner on the Chinese mainland.

Shui Cheong Hong's main materials are PU and leather. The minimum order is 300 dozen pairs per model, with shipment 30-45 days after order confirmation. Major markets for the company's products are the US, South America, Europe and Japan.

Like many Hong Kong manufacturers, Manley Footwear Ltd works with a joint-venture partner, in this case located across the border in the Dongguan area of the Chinese mainland. Many Hong Kong enterprises have established partnerships with mainland counterparts in Dongguan or Shenzhen (both in neighbouring Guangdong Province) or in Xiamen (in nearby Fujian Province). Proximity to Hong Kong allows close supervision of the manufacturing process to achieve and ensure maximum quality.

Manley manager Lina Chan says the company's pattern-print sandals sell well in the US. "Our leopard-skin, backless, PU sandals are really popular among Americans. We hope to develop the US sandals market even more."

Each month, Manley produces about 300,000 pairs, mainly EVA sandals, canvas shoes, sports shoes and dress shoes. The minimum order is 2,000 pairs per model and style, with delivery 45-60 days after receipt of a letter of credit. Along with the US, the company's key markets are South America and Eastern Europe.

Create Earth Co Ltd finds its snakeskin-pattern PU and PVC boots and pump boots for ladies in strong demand. At its factory in Dongguan, the company makes shoes in PU, satin and leather for women, men, children and babies. The minimum order is one TEU (about 1,000 pairs per model). Delivery takes 40 days after order confirmation. The main markets are in Europe, North America and Asia.

Established in 1994, Sun Sang Kong Yuen Shoes Fty Co Ltd makes and exports shoes, sandals and boots in PU and leather from its Hong Kong and Shenzhen operations.

"Since starting business, we have had the Karl Kani, Urban Trends, Pazzo and Bullhead brands among our customers. Now we find that fur-topped, PU, snakeskin-pattern boots (at US$6.80 per pair FOB Hong Kong) are popular in all our markets," says company representative Fenella Lau.

Sun Sang Kong Yuen can handle monthly production of about 400,000 pairs and soon will occupy a new 110,000-square-metre factory employing 1,800 workers in Shenzhen. The minimum order is 2,000 pairs per model. Shipment takes place 45-60 days after order confirmation. Major markets are the US, South America, the UK, Sweden, South Africa and Taiwan.

For General Merchandising Co, PVC-soled velvet sandals and PU print-pattern sandals for ladies, from its joint-venture factory in Dongguan, prove successful throughout its major export markets, namely South Africa, South America, Eastern Europe and the Middle East. The minimum order is 1,200-1,800 pairs per model, with shipment 45 days after order confirmation.

"Our velvet zebra-print sandals and snakeskin PU sandals sell well in the US, as do our PU, snakeskin-pattern, knee-length boots," says sales manager Fender Law.

Thancil Co Ltd does well with knee-length boots in snakeskin PVC, notably in its main market of Japan. Since 1979, Thancil has produced an array of junior-sized and ladies' fashion shoes, boots and sandals, plus men's casual shoes.

"We follow Italian fashions in designing our boots for the fashion-conscious Japanese market," says merchandiser Wendy Wan.

Monthly production depends on demand. The minimum order is about 2,000 pairs or one TEU. Delivery time for the finished products depends on the delivery time for raw materials. When materials are in stock, shipments can follow order confirmation by 10-21 days.

WRITTEN BY JAMES BULLEN

Contact Details

General Merchandising Co
Rm 708, Winfield Comm Bldg
6-8A Prat Ave, Tsim Sha Tsui
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2739-9088
Fax: 852-2739-7496
E-mail: gmlaw206@pacific.net.hk

Create Earth Co Ltd
3/F, Unit B
Wing Wong Comm Bldg
557-559 Nathan Rd
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2626-1008
Fax: 852-2626-1020
E-mail: cec122@netvigator.com

Manley Footwear Ltd
9/F, Flat D
Hong Kong Spinners Ind Bldg
818 Cheung Sha Wan Rd
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2370-2222
Fax: 852-2742-2352
E-mail: manshoes@manley.com.hk

Shui Cheong Hong Enterprise Ltd
15/F, Blk G-H
Wing Hong Ind Bldg
18-26 Kwai Fung Crescent
Kwai Chung
New Territories, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2426-0790
Fax: 852-2489-1193
E-mail: footwear@shuicheonghong.com.hk

Sun Sang Kong Yuen Shoes Fty Co Ltd
11/F, Unit 3, Wah Shing Centre
11-13 Shing Yip St, Kwun Tong
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2763-1128
Fax: 852-2797-9240
E-mail: sunsang@kongyuen.com.hk

Thancil Co Ltd
5/F, Amber Comm Bldg
70 Morrison Hill Rd
Wanchai, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2573-0628
Fax: 852-2838-1694
E-mail: thancil@netvigator.com


First Steps

Babies' Shoes

MAKING shoes for babies is no child's play, so Hong Kong manufacturers take impressive steps to ensure their products satisfy even the pickiest parents. The results are extra measures of stylish comfort for tiny tots taking their first, small steps.

Honest Enterprises Co Ltd offers a fancy collection of pull-on shoes for babies aged up to 12 months. Modeled on animals, the cotton twill range includes yellow-and-black tigers, red-and-black ladybirds and black-and-white cows. There are also polyester velour rabbits and acrylic furry dogs, which come in black and white. Each shoe has a whimsical animal's head on the front.

"These shoes are soft and fancy. Soft toys are popular, and the shoes resemble soft toys. Babies look cute in them," says Honest Enterprises director Jimmy Wong. Materials come from Taiwan and the Chinese mainland.

Honest Enterprises creates 25,000 dozen pairs of babies' shoes per month in different styles at two factories in Guangzhou on the Chinese mainland. Other materials include cotton interlock, tricot and imitation suede from the Chinese mainland, Japan, Taiwan and South Korea.

The company has its own brand, Heco, and also produces to buyers' designs or specifications. "If a customer supplies the artwork, we can produce a three-dimensional design," Wong says.

Prices range from US$1-1.60 per pair FOB Hong Kong. Minimum order is 1,000 pairs per item. Delivery takes 4-8 weeks after order confirmation.

Founded in 1967, Honest Enterprises sells mainly to the US, Europe and Asia. The firm has an annual turnover of HK$30m (US$3.8m).

Lap Ko Shoes Mfrs Ltd makes T-bar style shoes with navy-and-white plaid uppers and embroidered detailing. Another pair features light brown canvas uppers with white PVC toecaps and Velcro fasteners. The cost is US$1.60 per pair FOB Hong Kong.

Similarly, a beige canvas pair embellished with floral accessories and a pink, PVC suede model each cost US$1.80 FOB Hong Kong.

Tiny shoes with black-and-white, animal-print fabric uppers sell for US$2.30 per pair. A dark green pair in patterned fabric costs US$2.50. A pair featuring light brown, cow-suede uppers is US$3. All prices are FOB Hong Kong.

Made using raw materials from South Korea and Taiwan, these products fit toddlers aged up to three years. "They are cute, trendy and comfortable - and suitable for babies," says Lap Ko director Katherine Wong.

Each month, the company makes about 100,000 pairs of shoes for babies and children. Minimum order per style and colour is about 1,200 pairs for those with synthetic materials, or 2,000 pairs for leather. Regular lead time is 60 days.

Lap Ko designs some products and also tailor-makes to customers' designs. Major markets include the Netherlands, Germany, Canada, the US, Australia and Japan. Established in 1989, the company has a 200-worker factory at Huidong on the Chinese mainland.

Kam Lee Yun Kwok Co Ltd creates a range of infants' footwear using synthetic materials from Taiwan. "Our designs are very close to Italian designs. Colour schemes depend on market trends," says sales manager Francis Yip.

Babies' shoes, including boots, cost US$3.50-4 per pair FOB Hong Kong. Minimum order is 1,000 pairs per style. Delivery time is 45-60 days. Key markets include Europe and the US.

Created in 1994, the company makes 100,000 pairs per month, including infants', sporting and casual footwear, at its factory in Dongguan on the Chinese mainland. The 400-worker production facility has a floor area of 20,000 square metres.

Article Shoes Fty Ltd produces for babies aged 3-18 months. Its collections, ranging from white sandals to dark sneakers, are made from cowhide, suede leather, PU nubuck and synthetic materials. "The sources are Italy, South Korea and Taiwan," says sales manager Bassanio To.

Prices range from US$1.60-2.60 per pair FOB Hong Kong. Minimum order is 1,800 pairs per style, with lead time of 45-60 days, for export mainly to Asia, the US, Europe and South America.

The 10-year-old firm makes about 200,000 pairs per month at its 450-worker factory in Shenzhen on the Chinese mainland. The company engages in both OEM and ODM work.

WRITTEN BY LIZA LEE

Contact Details

Article Shoes Fty Ltd
Suite 607, Tower A
Hunghom Commercial Centre
37-39 Ma Tau Wai Rd
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2362-9832
Fax: 852-2330-1770
E-mail: artdc@hkstar.com

Capital Shoes Fty Ltd
1/F, Timely Fty Bldg
29 Hing Yip St, Kwun Tong
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2343-6730
Fax: 852-2797-8272
E-mail: capitals@hk.super.net

Honest Enterprises Co Ltd
3/F, Blk D1, Eldex Ind Bldg
21 Ma Tau Wei Rd, Hung Hom
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2363-7719
Fax: 852-2362-7130
E-mail: heco@netvigator.com

Kam Lee Yun Kwok Co Ltd
3/F, Rm 15, Blk B
Veristrong Ind Centre
34-36 Au Pui Wan St
Fo Tan, Sha Tin
New Territories, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2693-6355
Fax: 852-2693-6387
E-mail: kamleesu@netvigator.com

Lap Ko Shoes Mfrs Ltd
10/F, Unit 11, Blk A
Hoi Luen Ind Centre
55 Hoi Luen Rd, Kwun Tong
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2389-3375
Fax: 852-2389-3513
E-mail: lapko@hknet.com

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