8 Feb 2005
Evening Shoes(HKTDC Fashion - Footwear, Vol 01,2005)
|Circle Shoes Co Ltd prefers traditional colours like black, silver and gold for its range of evening shoes|
Given the wealth of talent and experience inherent in the long-established local footwear industry, it's not surprising that Hong Kong shoe manufacturers such as Circle Shoes Co Ltd are renowned for stylish, high quality and competitively priced evening shoes.
Circle Shoes' latest line includes gold and silver lam?shoes and high fashion boots with gold embroidery, says director and general manager Frankie Chan. "Our shoes with long pointed toes and stiletto heels are in line with the latest models from Italy and France," he claims.
Chan says the 19-year-old company produces for several famous brand names, including Nine West, TCP, MCY Co and Mosdisco. "Our shoes are hand-decorated and of the highest quality," he insists.
The shoe and handbag manufacturer employs 2,500 workers at factories in Shenzhen and Huizhou on the southern Chinese mainland that cover more than 20,000 square metres.
They use leather and fabric from Italy, the US, the UK, Korea or the mainland to craft up to 200,000 pairs of shoes a month for export to the US, Europe and Southeast Asia, including Japan and the mainland.
"Our monthly production ranges from 150,000-200,000 pairs," Chan advises. "Minimum order is 100 pairs and delivery time varies between two weeks and two months."
Fine design is equally important to Ahead Footwear Mfr (HK) Ltd, whose team of in-house designers follows the latest trends but add their own innovations. "We are currently producing many evening shoe styles with stiletto heels and rounded toes - very avant-garde styling," says director Helena Chan.
She claims that the 10-year-old company has an extensive R&D department and many of its fabrics are new, combining beauty with strength. "Beading and embroidery add glamour to our evening shoes and we have new technology to decorate leather," Chan maintains.
She adds that Ahead prides itself that its shoes are both elegant and comfortable. "We work together with the customer to review their designs and deliver the best styles," Chan says.
Ahead produces a wide range of ladies' and children's footwear bearing its own Violet label, and also produces under customers' brand names.
These are manufactured at a 5,000-square-foot factory in Guangzhou on the mainland that employs 200 workers, who turn out 60,000 pairs of shoes a month using leather from India, Italy, Taiwan and the mainland. "Our minimum order is 500 pairs," Chan says. "We promise delivery in 45 days."
Ahead's main markets are in Europe, but the company is seeking to expand in Asia, including the mainland. "We strive to keep our prices competitive and at present our FOB Hong Kong prices for evening shoes range from US$12-20 per pair," Chan says.
Europe is also a key market for Hong-Tech Footwear Co Ltd, which, marketing executive Catherine Siu says, also exports to the US. "We hope to expand in Asia during 2005," she adds.
According to Siu, sandals featuring silver and gold leather and glitter are currently best-selling evening shoes for the nine-year-old firm. "Our designers create many new ideas, which customers often like, but we also carry out their designs if required," Siu notes.
Hong-Tech offers a wide range of shoes for men, women and children, specialising in hi-tech materials for the uppers. "We make children's shoes for the Disney label and have introduced many new materials, which add to the strength and durability of the shoes," Siu claims.
The company's 200-worker factory in Shenzhen on the mainland produces 200,000 pairs of shoes a month. "The minimum order is 500 pairs, which we promise to deliver within 30-45 days," Siu says. "FOB Hong Kong prices for our evening shoes range from US$3.50-3.80 per pair."
Keeping abreast of fashion is key to the success of Solidfirm (Asia) Int'l Ltd, which has been making ladies' fashion footwear for 12 years. "We have a team of designers who know the pulse of latest trends, creating styles for all tastes, using the finest quality leather uppers and synthetic materials," declares marketing executive Marco Tang.
He says Solidfirm has its own fashion brand, and also produces exclusive designs for customers. "Our main markets at the moment are Europe, South Africa and North America, and we are also seeking to expand our customer base in the US," Tang adds.
Solidfirm's 180,000-square-foot factory in Guangdong Province on the mainland houses three production lines and a workforce of 500 capable of 80,000-100,000 pairs of shoes a month.
"The minimum order is 1,000 pairs in any one style and we can promise delivery in 3-4 weeks," Tang pledges. "We produce very glamorous evening shoes, but we keep our prices competitive - our FOB Hong Kong price range is US$5-10 a pair."
Demonstrating yet again that no one can beat Hong Kong footwear manufacturers when it comes to making elegant, comfortable and high quality evening shoes at affordable prices.
WRITTEN BY WINSOME LANE
Circle Shoes Co Ltd
4 Pak Kung St
Hung Hom, Kowloon
Hong-Tech Footwear Co Ltd
Flat B, 6/F
Chou Chong Commercial Bldg
422-428 Castle Peak Rd
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