1 June 2003
Pocket Watches(HKTDC Watch & Clock, Vol 02,2003)
A Pocket Full of Time
A series of stylish stainless steel pocket watches from Wing Root Ltd
Stylish, convenient and practical, pocket watches are still an essential accessory for many around the world. Hong Kong manufacturers produce a wide range of designs and styles to suit the tastes, and indeed the pockets, of all customers.
Jaunlet Industries Ltd, for example, was established in 1987 and has specialised in the manufacture of pocket watches from the beginning. Today it exports in excess of 100,000 pieces per month to customers in the US, Europe, Australasia and Russia.
"Our series of elegant pocket watches depicting wildlife scenes has been extremely popular now for more than 10 years. Like all our watches they are manufactured in durable zinc alloy and fitted with Japanese movements," says marketing manager Laura Wong.
Among the best sellers are: the mallard pocket watch with chain; eagle pocket watch and pocketknife with wooden box; and parrot clock with wood base. All these models are quartz analogue, but Wong promises that a range of mechanical pocket watches will be released by mid-2003.
She also says that prices are "very competitive" and available on request. Jaunlet has a minimum order requirement of 500 pieces per shipment and will deliver in 45-60 days.
"Our reputation is based on our strength in design and we have excellent in-house design and engineering departments to support our OEM and ODM developments," Wong says.
"We are very flexible and can work easily from simple sketches right through to detailed technical drawings. Our sales and marketing department in Hong Kong welcomes all enquiries."
Another pocket watch specialist is Tak Shing Hong Timepieces Ltd, which was set up in 2001 to produce bracelet watches and pocket watches. In a very short time the company has built up a business producing 100,000 quartz analogue timepieces per month, with a turnover in excess of US$3.5m.
"Our watches are all of the very high quality demanded by our customers in the US, Europe and Japan," says managing director Kenny Kwong. "They are all made from alloy with Japanese movements."
Tak Shing manufactures its own Swingy brand, which includes chrome or gold coloured cases with red agate, and chrome or gold coloured cases with turquoise. FOB Hong Kong prices for these models start at US$2 per piece for a minimum order of 300 pieces per model and 1,000 pieces per shipment, delivered within 45 days of confirmation of order.
"Our production is fairly evenly split between our designs and those of our customers. We can react very quickly to an order with our design department on the Chinese mainland ready to help wherever it can," says Kwong.
Equally experienced when it comes to pocket watches is Artalie Co Ltd, which has been manufacturing pocket watches for 16 years and is therefore ideally situated to spot changing market trends.
"In this industry you have to be flexible and be prepared to change fast. We offer more than 200 pocket watch styles in our own range alone and we also produce other designs as required," explains managing director Neddy Ho. "Our customers in the US are much more fashion conscious than those in Europe who tend to go for a more conservative and traditional look."
As with most of today's models, the watches are quartz analogue and made of alloy. Artalie's pocket watches start at US$2.80 per piece for a minimum order of 300 pieces per model. Delivery time is between 35-40 days on confirmation of order. The company manufactures at a 4,000-square-foot factory on the Chinese mainland and produces around 15,000 pieces per month.
"Artalie has built its reputation on high quality, competitive pricing and excellent service. And we also make sure we have a strong presence at the main trade fairs in Hong Kong," Ho adds.
Trade fairs are also important to Bonita Accessories Co, which is dedicated to meeting the needs of a niche market through its specialised range of sterling silver pocket watches. "We have been producing silver pocket watches for more than 10 years, and have built a reputation for quality and competitive pricing for upmarket pocket watches," says manager Danny Pang.
Through word of mouth, by regular attendance at Hong Kong trade fairs, and through a presence at overseas exhibitions such as the Basel Fair, Bonita has developed its business to a point where it now exports more than 30,000 pieces per month.
"We offer a wide variety of our own designs as well as the capability to produce those supplied by our customers," says Pang. Bonita's main markets are the US and increasingly Europe, notably Italy. Pang welcomes all enquiries regarding Bonita's quartz analogue pocket watches and will deal with pricing on an individual order basis. There is a minimum order requirement of just 100 pieces and delivery is within 45 days of confirmation of order.
WRITTEN BY SIMON SAUNDERS
Artalie Co Ltd
4/F, Blk B
Wah Yuen Fty Bldg
12 Elm St
Tai Kok Tsui, Kowloon
Aurora Time Enterprises Ltd
9/F, Blk A6
Mai Hing Ind Bldg
16-18 Hing Yip St
Kwun Tong, Kowloon
Bonita Accessories Co
Units 7-10, 12/F
Pacific Trade Centre
2 Kai Hing Rd
Kowloon Bay, Kowloon
Jaunlet Industries Ltd
Flats B-D, 25/F, Phase 2
Superluck Ind Centre,
57 Sha Tsui Rd
New Territories, Kowloon
Tak Shing Hong Timepieces Ltd
Rm 2, 24/F
Tak King Ind Bldg
27 Lee Chung St
Wing Root Ltd
Unit B, 4/F
Luen Tai Ind Bldg
76 Kwai Cheong Rd, Kwai Chung
New Territories, Kowloon
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