1 Feb 2003
School Shoes(HKTDC Fashion - Footwear, Vol 01,2003)
Vol 1, 2003
Ladies' Fashion Shoes
A Class Of Their Own
Qualfoot Co Ltd applies delicate details such as Velcro (centre) and "cross-stitches" (top) to its school shoes
Fashionable enough for kids and tough enough for parents are two key qualities for school shoes. Hong Kong's footwear industry more than satisfies these and other important criteria to please even the most discerning customer.
Qualfoot Co Ltd, founded in 1989, manufactures a wide range of shoes including all kinds of children's footwear. "We generally tailor-make shoes to our customers' specifications, although we also have our own designs such as the Mary Jane range," says director Stanley Chu. "Prices are dependent on materials and quantity, although we are always very competitive."
Qualfoot manufactures on the Chinese mainland using leather, PVC, PU and EVA sourced locally and in Taiwan. The company has a minimum order requirement of 1,200 pairs per style and will deliver in 60-70 days after receipt of L/C at sight.
"Our main markets have traditionally been in the US but in recent years Europe and Australasia have been growing markets. Our customers have remained with us as we are very flexible and can accommodate new styles and designs very quickly," explains Chu.
Also established in 1989 is Hua Tai Industries (Far East) Co Ltd, which produces between 300,000-500,000 pairs of shoes per month. "All our shoes are produced to the specifications supplied by our customers," says the company's manager Jacky Ng. "Our biggest market is South Africa but we also export all over the world to Europe, the US, Israel and Japan."
As an indication of prices, boys' student shoes in a variety of designs with PU uppers and PVC soles cost US$2.30 per pair FOB Hong Kong, based on a minimum order of one TEU. Delivery is usually within 30 days on confirmation of order.
Hua Tai manufactures at a 20,000-square-metre factory with a workforce of 800 in Fujian Province on the mainland. "Our quality is always guaranteed as our customers wouldn't settle for less," says Ng. "Our reputation has spread by word of mouth and by regularly attending trade fairs in Germany and in the US."
A relative newcomer to the market, Welldone Shoes Co has focused particularly on children's shoes since its formation in 1997. "We offer a wide range of children's school shoes which are designed at our own development unit, which is separate to our factory," explains director Gordon Lui. "For school shoes, PU uppers and rubber outsoles tend to be the most popular materials as they are very durable and the price is cheaper than leather -prices are particularly important in this sector."
Welldone has a monthly production of 45,000 pairs and a minimum order of 1,000 pairs, promising delivery within 30 days on confirmation of order. The company manufactures in Guangdong Province on the mainland with sales and marketing based in Hong Kong.
"We regularly attend trade fairs in Germany and in Dubai," adds Lui. "The Middle East has always been a good market for us, with Europe close behind and growing."
General Merchandising Co Ltd is a manufacturer of children's and men's shoes and ladies' sandals and was established in 1996. "The shoe market is very competitive and it would be risky to focus purely on children's shoes so we offer a full range of styles for men and women," says sales manager Fender Law. "We have our own range of school shoes as well as meeting the individual needs of our customers," he adds.
General Merchandising has a factory in Dongguan with a workforce of 500, which deals with 75% of its annual production. "Our prices are very competitive and we have the flexibility to arrange for large orders at short notice," says Law. "Most importantly, our quality is controlled very tightly at all stages of production."
Law maintains that one of the most popular materials for school shoes is PU, which the company sources on the mainland. General Merchandising exports mainly to North America, has a negotiable minimum order and will deliver in 60 days on confirmation of order.
Hung Fat Co was set up in 1986 as a general manufacturer of shoes and has included school shoes since the beginning. It manufactures in PU and leather under its own Henbo brand name, as well as for its customers' own designs. Using locally sourced raw materials, Hung Fat manufactures in Guangdong Province on the mainland, with sales and marketing based in Hong Kong.
"The majority of our customers are in Europe and they all demand the highest quality as well as durability," says director Ng Hung Sang. "We ensure that their orders are always delivered on time."
The company asks for a minimum order of 500 pairs and will deliver within 30-45 days on confirmation of order.
Which all goes to show that for quality, fashion, durability and price, Hong Kong gets top marks for school shoes.
WRITTEN BY SIMON SAUNDERS
General Merchandising Co Ltd
Winfield Comm Bldg
6-8A Prat Avenue
Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
Hua Tai Industries (Far East) Co Ltd
Max Share Centre
367-373 King's Rd
Hung Fat Co
Rm B9, 11/F, Blk B
Tonic Ind Centre
19 Lam Hing St
Kowloon Bay, Kowloon
Qualfoot Co Ltd
Unit O, 6/F, Phase 3
11 Hok Yuen St
Hung Hom, Kowloon
Wearbest Shoes Fty Ltd
Mongkok Comm Centre
16 Argyle St
Welldone Shoes Co
700 Castle Peak Rd
Lai Chi Kok, Kowloon
|Hong Kong Buyers Request Form||Overseas Buyers Request Form||More Publications|