14 Jan 2004
Personal Storage(HKTDC Fashion - Leather Goods & Bags, Vol 01,2004)
On The Case
A specialist in manicure sets, Gadar Enterprises Ltd offers different combinations for customers in the US and Europe
From toiletries and cosmetics to CDs and golf balls, must-have items change with every traveller and every trip and not all of them will fit easily or safely into a suitcase or laptop carrier. That's where personal storage comes in: whatever it is that needs to be carried, you can rest assured that you'll find a specially designed case or bag for it in Hong Kong.
Cosmetics and toiletries are, of course, the most obvious candidates for this type of personal storage, and Jetwin Houseware Co Ltd director Albert Luk says these bags and cases are one of his company's main product lines.
"Our cosmetic bags include carefully designed protective holders for items like lipsticks and mirrors, which make it easy to pick out what you need," he says, adding that Jetwin also produces belt-style bags for cameras and personal stereos as well as CD cases, shopping bags and holders for credit cards, passports, coins and keys.
Luk says Jetwin's in-house designers follow fashion trends closely, but a lot of new ideas come from customers themselves. "There is a growing tendency for customers to demand lightweight and fashionable products," he notes, highlighting the increased demand for reusable shopping bags that has been sparked by environmental concerns.
The firm's 300 workers at its factory in Shenzhen on the Chinese mainland produce 100,000 bags and cases every month. A recent development is a new soft green range, made of nylon mesh and sponge and lined with colourful fabrics, that is available at prices ranging from US$0.85-1.95 FOB Hong Kong. Minimum order size is 2,000 pieces, with delivery about 45 days after orders are confirmed.
Splendid Products Mfg Co also specialises in cosmetic bags, producing up to 156,000 every month at its ISO 9000-certified mainland factory for well-known brand names in Europe, Australia and Japan.
Marketing manager Cynthia Cheung says the company's in-house design team comes up with as many as 10 new styles every week. "Our designs make us competitive," she says, explaining that it is important to have a wide choice available, since the styles customers choose vary significantly from country to country.
Splendid's prices start at US$0.50 FOB Hong Kong for a minimum order of 1,200 cosmetic bags delivered 45-60 days after order confirmation. "We are always seeking to expand and are currently looking at the US," adds Cheung.
Chung Ngai Arts Handbag Co Ltd sells its range of personal storage items, including men's and women's travelling cases and suit covers and toiletry and cosmetic bags, to customers in North America, Europe and Scandinavia.
"We concentrate on pattern and quality," says Chung Ngai spokeswoman Gigi Sze. "We research the market thoroughly to see which patterns are most popular and then create new collections every two to three months, using new patterns and following seasonal trends."
Sze describes Chung Ngai's styles as simple, practical and classic. "All that changes with each new collection is the patterns," she adds.
The firm has 800 workers at its two factories in Shenzhen, which process PVC, PU, PVA and cotton sourced from Taiwan, Korea, the mainland and Japan. Chung Ngai requires a minimum order of 1,200 pieces at prices ranging from US$0.60-2.50 FOB Hong Kong, which is delivered 30-60 days after order confirmation.
J & P Industrial Ltd also produces some of its range in cotton and says it has recently noticed an increased demand for this fabric. "Our designers are always looking for new ideas and new materials, so our products will always have a fresh look for customers," says director Pansy Yuen.
"We produce four collections of new designs every season, as well as bags and cases tailor-made for individual customers."
J & P's range includes cosmetic bags and fashionable travelling bags, mainly produced as promotional gifts for well-known brands in the US, the UK, Spain, Sweden, the mainland and Russia.
"This market is becoming increasingly competitive, so we try to source materials on the mainland to keep prices low and delivery fast because that's what customers are looking for," adds Yuen.
J & P produces more than 300,000 bags and cases every month at its 400-worker, 8,000-square-metre factory. Prices range from US$0.20-5.00 FOB Hong Kong for minimum orders of 500 pieces delivered 45-60 days after order confirmation. "We are always looking to develop special materials - like our new PVC felt - and interesting designs," Yuen adds.
Proving that when it comes to personal storage, looks matter and local firms are committed to coming up with exciting new styles that keep their customers satisfied and their order books full.
WRITTEN BY SUZANNE MOORE
Chung Ngai Arts Handbag Co Ltd
Units A & B, 17/F, Sun Ying Ind Centre
9 Tin Wan Close
Tin Wan, Aberdeen
Farway Hi-Fi Leather Bag Co
Units 7-8, 5/F, Blk B, Hi-Tech Ind Centre
491-501 Castle Peak Rd
Tsuen Wan, New Territories
J & P Industrial Ltd
Flats A-C, 26/F, Kin Ga Ind Bldg
9 San On St
Tuen Mun, New Territories
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