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Evening Elegance(HKTDC Fashion - Leather Goods & Bags, Vol 03,2004)



Vol. 3, 2004



Company Profiles

Moving Up
Mainland Handbag Mfy Ltd

Evening Elegance
Wing Shing Enterprise Int'l Co Ltd

Evening Elegance

Wing Shing Enterprise Int'l Co Ltd

Metal bags for evening wear are a hallmark of Wing Shing Enterprise Int'l Co Ltd, which has been manufacturing elegant ladies' accessories since 1983

Elegant accessories for evening wear have long been a specialty of Wing Shing Enterprise Int'l Co Ltd, which has been manufacturing dress evening bags and fashionable ladies' handbags since it was established in 1983.

Originally Wing Shing made bags and accessories in Hong Kong, but, like many local companies, made the decision to transfer production to the Chinese mainland in 1988 in order to lower costs and boost competitiveness.

Four years ago, the company opened a new plant in Dongguan on the southern mainland that covers 80,000 square feet and employs more than 600 people.

"We have professional designers creating numerous styles of various products, skilled technology managers supervising production and advanced equipment for top quality results," explains managing director Tang Fong Chiu. "We also have a metal factory so we can make metal accessories."

Metal bags intended primarily for evening use are a company hallmark, and an unusual market niche Tang spotted while travelling to research different markets.

"I noticed that very few companies were doing this and thought it would be a profitable area - now our company exports worldwide," Tang notes proudly. "Our main markets are Europe, the US, East Asia, Japan and Taiwan."

He explains that FOB Hong Kong prices vary considerably according to the cost of the material and the level of intricacy of the workmanship required.

"For example, brass is very expensive while PVC products are much cheaper than leather," Tang says. "We're doing mostly mid-price goods, and we don't do very cheap work."

According to Tang, monthly production is about 60,000 handbags and 30,000-50,000 wallets in various stylish permutations of leather, metal, synthetic leather and PVC.

He adds that the leather comes from Italy, Korea and the mainland and the brass is imported from Japan, while various other metals are sourced on the mainland to keep costs down.

"We do OEM business and also have our own Cawens brand name for export," says Tang. "The brand has been established for 15 years, and we have another three brands for products destined for the mainland market."

He reveals that Wing Shing's current production consists of "about 50% OEM products" and 50% of the company's own designs that are produced by its in-house creative team.

"New designs are necessary for every season, but our metal bags are not as subject to changes in fashion as many other items," Tang admits. "They are only for evening use and special events, so they are not so seasonal."

The design of the bags ranges from the playful - cast metal bags in the shapes of hearts or animals - to classic evening elegance. Some are encrusted with rhinestones - an expensive process since the stones have to be glued on by hand - and are particularly popular in the Middle East, where Dubai is a major market.

The company's five full-time designers are constantly generating new ideas, often in response to market information picked up from customers or from Tang, who conducts market research when travelling and who also has extensive contacts in the fashion accessories area.

"Clients usually come on the recommendation of other clients - they've seen our work and know that it's good," says Tang. "Exhibitions and advertising also help to spread awareness, and we have a website that further raises our international profile."

As a result of all these activities, Cawens brand items can be found in department stores all over the world, and the company works closely with major retailing names in Taiwan and the US.

"It usually takes about 45 days to turn around an order, but it can be as little as 30 days for some small orders," Tang says, adding Wing Shing's minimum order is 120 pieces per style and colour.

With order books swelling in 2004, it is little wonder that Tang is confident his company is facing a bright future. "There will always be a demand for quality design and workmanship," he says.

WRITTEN BY ROBERT PIERCE

Wing Shing Enterprise Int'l Co Ltd

Unit 702, Win Century Centre,
2A Mongkok Rd, Mong Kok,
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2726-2663
Fax: 852-2352-3154
Email: wshing@hknet.com
Web: www.cawens.com

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