1 July 2003
Ladies' Leather Accessories(HKTDC Fashion - Leather Goods & Bags, Vol 03,2003)
Handy leather accessories from C-Corp (HK) Co Ltd include (from left) card/mirror pouches, key holders, card holders and coin purses
Quality rules when it comes to ladies' leather accessories and nobody knows it better than the world's most famous brands, many of whose products are manufactured by Hong Kong companies on the Chinese mainland.
For example, Austins Marmon Ltd manufactures top fashion dress gloves for the US retail giant GAP as well as Japanese designer Kenzo, who is based in Paris. "We make gloves to customers' designs, but we have a team of designers of our own and also an extensive research and development department constantly looking into new styles," says sales manager Juliana Lam. "Our design department advises the customers."
Austin Marmon's output is entirely OEM and its main market is the US, which takes 70% of the firm's production. "We produce about 600,000 leather dress gloves per month," adds Lam.
Founded in 1963, Austins Marmon requires a minimum order of 900 pairs in any style, size and colour. Delivery time is 90-120 days depending on the season. Skins come from a variety of animals including cows, pigs, goats, deer and sheep, while the company also utilises knitted and woven fabrics as well as plastic materials such as PU and rubber.
"Austins has its own tanneries which provide a constant supply of top quality leather to the factories," explains Lam. "The leathers can be customised to clients' requirements."
Austins Marmon, which also produces hats, scarves, gaiters and headbands, is headquartered in Hong Kong with 20 factories on the mainland and throughout Southeast Asia employing about 8,500 workers.
These factories include the Chong Ming glove factory in Panyu on the mainland, which was ISO 9002 certified in 1998.
"Prices for ladies' leather dress gloves are in the medium to high-end range, but some of our other gloves, especially fabric, are very competitive," claims Lam, noting that FOB Hong Kong prices for leather gloves range between US$3-14 per pair.
Equally famous names such as Valentino and Hugo Boss are key customers at Granda Industries Ltd, which has been making small leather products for illustrious clients such as these since it began operations 12 years ago.
"Many of our most famous clients keep their names confidential since they like the public to assume their goods are made in Europe," says director Sam Hon.
"Our machinery is some of the most advanced on the mainland and we have superior technical know-how, derived from international technicians."
Granda focuses on classically styled small leather goods and handbags at the medium-to-top end of the market. "Women executives who use wallets, name card cases or key cases like a classic design in fine quality leather," Hon believes. "We use leather from Italy, Korea, India, Pakistan, Germany and the mainland as well as faux leather for certain items."
Granda, which also produces under its own Mazinni label, has no minimum order and usually delivers within 30 days from a 15,000-square-foot factory in Shenzhen on the mainland.
"FOB Hong Kong prices will depend on the size of the order, but the current price of many of our single items is US$1," says Hon. "There is a bulk discount for orders between 10,000-50,000 units."
Women executives are also a major target audience for Manifolds Industrial Co Ltd, which produces an extensive selection of feminine handbags, briefcases and small leather goods such as wallets, coin purses and key holders.
"We find that career women like slim uncluttered lines and fine calf leather," explains marketing manager Rambo Chau.
"Experienced designers, skilled craftsmen and knowledgeable technicians contribute to the quality of our products."
The calf leather the five-year-old company uses comes mainly from the mainland, but the firm also uses cotton canvas, polyester and nylon fabric material for both OEM and ODM production.
Manifolds produces 100,000 small leather items and 50,000 bags per month at a 3,000-square-foot factory in Huizhou on the southern mainland that employs 300 workers.
The minimum order is 1,000 pieces delivered 45 days after order confirmation at typical FOB Hong Kong prices of US$3-4 for a single document case.
"We also feature attractive collections for women, including the Leisure Lady and Summer Lady in pastel colours," says Chau, adding that Manifolds' annually turns over in excess of US$3m per year.
Manifolds exports to major European markets such as Germany, which is also a key sales area for Well Leather Goods Fty Ltd. "German companies are our main customers," says Well Leather director Ng Chi Leung.
The company, which was established in 1992, makes ladies' wallets and coin purses. "Mainly we use calf leather from Italy, Japan and Korea but we also produce some products in synthetic fabrics including PVC and nylon, which is very strong," adds Ng.
Well Leather's 40,000-square-foot factory in Panyu on the mainland produces 80,000 items per month and a minimum order is 1,000 pieces delivered 45 days after order confirmation.
Ng says Well Leather charges FOB Hong Kong US$4-5 for its larger items, proving yet again that luxurious leather from Hong Kong looks good but doesn't cost a fortune.
WRITTEN BY WINSOME LANE
Manifolds Industrial Co Ltd
Units 1 & 2, 13/F
Million Fortune Ind Centre
34-36 Chai Wan Kok St
Tsuen Wan, New Territories
Well Leather Goods Fty Ltd
Unit 8, 16/F, Tower 2
21 Lam Hing St
Kowloon Bay, Kowloon
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