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Making The Case(HKTDC Optical,2003)



2003



Product Feature

Trendy Eye-Openers
Fashion Frames

Looking Cool
Sports Glasses

Making The Case
Optical Packaging

Making The Case

Optical Packaging

Lakco Packaging Ltd has a colourful range of metal and plastic optical cases in patterns that include multi-coloured spots (bottom).

SPECTACLES are high-volume selling items, and where there are spectacles, there are usually cases to put them in for safekeeping. Hong Kong is a major producer of spectacles and offers a huge variety from the colourfully sporting to the sober and smart.

Natpak Optical Ltd produces eyeglass cases in more than 100 different styles. These are usually aluminium, hinged boxes wrapped in fabric. Paper coverings are also common, as are leatherette.

"We have many designs," says Kinsen Au, marketing manager. "Usually reading glasses are physically smaller and utilize slimmer cases while fashionable sunglasses, with larger lenses, require much bigger cases."

The minimum order is around 5,000 cases while prices range from US$0.30 for a budget case to US$4-5 for a wooden case, FOB Hong Kong.

Asked about the more costly wooden cases, Au says, "They are handmade and usually designed to match more expensive glasses, such as those with gold frames or some other exotic material."

Apart from a wider range of materials being available, the actual manufacturing of eyeglass cases remains standardized. The US is the company's major market, while Italy, France and the UK are important markets in Europe.

Another firm offering a very colourful range of cases suitable for both regular spectacles and sunglasses is Lakco Packaging Ltd. "We also produce jumbo-size cases especially for fashionable sunglasses," says Elaine Lam, marketing executive.

"We use metal or plastic depending on the customer's requirements, while the covering is usually a PU or PVC material," she adds.

"It is difficult to discuss FOB prices in general because so much depends on the covering material. Some covers, such as real leather, can be quite costly and are usually ordered to go with high-end glasses," she says.

Noting that Lakco produces on demand, she says some customers provide their own designs but most select from the in-house range.

Production takes place at the company's 1,500-worker factory in Dongguan on the Chinese mainland. Minimum order is 2,400 cases and delivery is 30-40 days after order confirmation.

Italy and other European countries are major markets, Lam says demand for spectacles cases is both long-term and steady.

Intercom Packaging Co Ltd, a producer of eyeglass cases, pouches and a variety of other packaging items, has been in business since 1982. Its major markets are the US, Europe and Asia. The company has an office in the US.

"We have a large factory with 18 buildings and 1,300 employees in Daya Bay on the Chinese mainland," says a company representative.

Intercom produces up to one million optical cases per month in diverse styles featuring metal, plastic and wood. Soft leatherette is the most popular wrapping material. Flocked blister is a frequent lining. Customers always have their choice.

While offering standard items, Intercom is eager to develop according to customers' own designs. Minimum order quantities are 1,000-5,000 cases (depending on the model) for plastic cases, 1,000 pieces for metal cases and 500 pieces for wooden cases. Flexible pricing is available.

Materials are sourced from the Chinese mainland, South Korea, Japan, the US and parts of Europe.

Wimpsy Industrial Ltd also offers a wide range, including special designs with clear windows for displaying up to four pairs of frames at one time.

Managing director Laurence Chan says, "Our metal display cases are hot sellers. Usually, importers and retailers buy them but some manufacturers of optical goods also order from us."

Plastic cases are a relatively minor line and come in 10 styles, while dominant metal cases come in many styles. "We use PVC and PU for covers and different fibres depending on what is available on the market and what the customer wants," he says.

"Brushed aluminium cases, with no outer coverings, are most popular these days," says Chan. "Prices depend very much on the product and the design but typically a good metal case costs about US$3 while a plastic version costs about US$0.25, both prices FOB Hong Kong."

While some cases may have a satin lining, Chan says many customers prefer no lining at all.

According to Chan, customers usually choose from regular in-house designs. "To maintain a fresh look we change the cover materials and designs frequently and then take new products along to display at trade fairs," he says.

Wimpsy operates a factory in Dongguan on the Chinese mainland. Since beginning in 1998, the company has grown quickly thanks to buyers in Europe and Japan.

WRITTEN BY TONY HENDERSON

Contact Details

Goliyan Industries Co Ltd
Rm 821
1 Hung To Rd, Kwun Tong
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2372-0687
Fax: 852-2763-1411
E-mail: info@goliyan.com.hk

Intercom Packaging Co Ltd
11/F, Unit A
Kader Ind Bldg
22 Kai Cheung Rd, Kowloon Bay
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2545-0670
Fax: 852-2544-3574
E-mail: sales@intercomhk.com

Lakco Packaging Ltd
6/F, Units 11-16, Blk A
Hi-Tech Ind Centre
5-21 Pak Tin Par St, Tsuen Wan
New Territories, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2413-1330
Fax: 852-2411-5109
E-mail: lakcopkg@netvigator.com

Natpak Optical Ltd
9/F, Blk A
Goodview Ind Bldg
11 Kin Fat St, Tuen Mun
New Territories, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2462-4448
Fax: 852-2462-3804
E-mail: enquiry@natpak.com

Qualipak Mfg Ltd
7/F, China United Centre
28 Marble Rd
North Point, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2529-6196
Fax: 852-2529-6632
E-mail: qualipak@qualipakhk.com

Wimpsy Industrial Ltd
2/F, Rm 19, Metro Centre I
32 Lam Hing St, Kowloon Bay
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2494-8859
Fax: 852-2487-4138
E-mail: wimpsy@wimpsy.com