5 Jan 2006
Fashion Jewellery(HKTDC Enterprise, Vol 01,2006)
|Dragon Jewelry Hardware Fty Ltd's fashion jewellery line features a bold metal bangle, a metal ring with crystals and an epoxy-and-stone necklace with matching earrings|
For example, Hang Fung Jewellery Co Ltd produces 300 new styles every month using 14-24K gold, silver, semiprecious stones, crystals, enamel and acrylic.
"We use different metals, stones and materials to create a fashionable mix-and-match look," explains product development manager Don Wong.
This ISO 9001-certified producer manufactures 660,000 pieces of jewellery per month at its 4,000-worker, 200,000-square-foot facilities in Shenzhen, Tianjin and Beijing on the Chinese mainland.
Supplying retailers, wholesalers and department stores, the company offers virtually any jewellery item for OEM orders as well as its own designs. "Our key selling point is our strong product development team in Hong Kong and on the mainland," Wong claims.
Asia (including the mainland) is Hang Fung's biggest market, taking 50% of output, with the US and Europe accounting for 20% each. Another important market is the UAE.
FOB Hong Kong unit prices range from US$100-1,200 for gold items, and from US$10-500 for silver items for minimum order values of US$5,000 and 100 pieces per style delivered 45 days after order confirmation.
Silver is the specialty of Ma Kui Jewellery Ltd, which produces everything from elaborate necklaces to simple rings using semiprecious stones, glass, crystal, acrylic and even precious stones such as diamonds and aquamarine.
The 18-year-old company recently moved to a new 20,000-square-metre factory in Guangdong Province and will be increasing its 120-strong workforce in early 2006, says director Candy Ma.
She explains that concentrating on the trendy fashion market means keeping ahead of fashion colours and styles. "We produce more than 100 new designs per season and also accept OEM orders," Ma says.
Describing necklaces and earrings as the most popular pieces, Ma says, "very colourful stones are in demand, and we are using dyed white jade to create fashionable earthy green and blue tones".
FOB Hong Kong unit prices range from US$1 for a simple ring or pendant to US$20 for a necklace set, with an average product price of US$5 per piece for a minimum order of 200 pieces per style delivered four weeks after order confirmation.
The company sources silver from the US and Australia and semiprecious stones primarily from the mainland. "Europe, the US and Japan each account for 30% of our exports, and we have recently entered Eastern Europe," says Ma.
Focusing on a less traditional metal, Alfa Bracelets uses stainless steel and titanium to produce bracelets, necklaces, pendants, bangles and rings. "We have specialised in steel products for more than 30 years, and diversified into jewellery five years ago," explains sales and marketing manager Monesh Ahuja.
"We offer a range of more than 500 designs as well as undertaking OEM orders, which account for 15%-20% of our business."
The company markets its own Alfa brand - including quality packaging, displays and marketing and advertising support to its stockists - and supplies on a non-exclusive basis to general importers and wholesalers.
Catering to the 15-30 year old age group, bracelets form Alfa's most popular line and also account for its largest range of designs.
"Over the past five years, there has been a surge in the demand for stainless steel jewellery that we believe will eventually create for itself a market niche similar to that for silver jewellery," states Ahuja.
He claims Alfa jewellery appeals to a wide audience, citing the big, chunky jewellery popular with the fashionable hip-hop market in the US. "The US is our biggest market, along with Europe where more mixed and casual designs are also popular," he adds.
Ahuja says Alfa works closely with a 300-500-worker factory in Shenzhen, to produce designs starting from as little as US$0.40-25.00 per piece FOB Hong Kong using stainless steel sourced from Japan, Korea and the mainland. Minimum order values of US$3,000 and 300 pieces per model are delivered within 60 days of order confirmation.
The more traditional bridalwear market has proved a successful niche for 12-year-old Best Direction Ltd, taking some 50% of its output of primarily Austrian crystal and white metal fashion jewellery. "Crystal accounts for around 80% of our exports," explains trading manager Eric Lau.
Austrian crystal is perennially popular, he notes, as it is one of the traditional choices for bridal and evening wear. "Necklace and earring sets are our most popular items," Lau says, adding that Best Direction sources crystals from Austria, alloy and brass from the mainland and material findings from the US "to ensure quality".
The company offers 3,000-4,000 designs bearing its Charlestone brand name, producing 1.1 million jewellery pieces per month at its 1,400-worker, 14,900-square-metre factory in Shenzhen.
FOB Hong Kong unit prices range from US$1 up to US$30 for an elegant multi-crystal necklace and earrings set, while minimum order values of US$6,000 are delivered 6-8 weeks after order confirmation. Best Direction's biggest market is the US, taking 60% of its output, followed by Europe with 25%.
Wherever the market, and whatever its demands, Hong Kong's fashion jewellery companies continue to offer trendsetting, affordable designs with the quality, service and expertise expected of the industry's veteran manufacturers.
WRITTEN BY SANDRA JENNER
Best Direction Ltd
538 Castle Peak Rd
Lai Chi Kok, Kowloon
Dragon Jewelry Hardware Fty Ltd
Rm 1707, Vanta Ind Centre
21-33 Tai Lin Pai Rd
Kwai Chung, New Territories
Hang Fung Jewellery Co Ltd
2/F, Phase II
Kaiser Estate, 28 Man Lok St
Hung Hom, Kowloon
Kitty's Collection Ltd
Rm 7B, Ritz Plaza
122 Austin Rd
Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon