10 Jan 2008
Competitive Containers(HKTDC Enterprise, Vol 01,2008)
|Intercom Packaging Co Ltd delivers a comprehensive range of competitive containers for watches and jewellery and use as gift boxes|
As technology advances and brings new and improved consumer goods, so too does the demand for both ergonomic and attractive ways to pack them. Bearing this in mind, Intercom Packaging Co Ltd delivers a comprehensive range of competitive containers.
"We started out in the packaging industry in 1979, catering mainly to the watches, clocks and jewellery sectors," says Sales Manager Sharon Ho. "Demand for appropriate boxes for these items continues strongly today, but now we also supply firms on the Chinese mainland."
Intercom established a US sales office in Oregon in 1993. "This was in the form of a large stock warehouse complete with offices for our staff to handle US sales and marketing operations," Ms Ho says.
"We achieved ISO certification in December 2002, by which time we were bringing out a multitude of boxes and containers in many shapes and sizes," she adds, noting that, unsurprisingly, there is also a diverse list of required raw materials. "Up until now, our main materials are wood, metal, plastic and paper, and a variety of coverings that includes paper and fabric, PU and paint."
Many of the wood boxes supplied are spray-painted. "Our wood boxes are high-end packaging products and usually supplied either spray-painted with a high-gloss or matt finish," Ms Ho notes. "We also do PU wrappings, usually in the form of imitation leather, and we can use real leather if the buyer wishes."
More complex boxes, such as jewellery organizers, may come in wood with brass fittings and fine interior fabrics. "The piano finish is popular for high-end goods," Ms Ho asserts.
While Intercom generally puts the focus on simple, elegant boxes that are suitable as gift boxes, it also offers a range of display items for shop windows and counters. "We introduced a new line of neck stands at Basel in 2007," Ms Ho says. "These neck stands are elegant, lightweight and easy for exhibitors to carry to their booths at shows in addition to their usefulness as window and counter displays in shops and stores."
Neck stands come in different sizes and usually in a black or white finish, while several other colours can also be ordered. "One design comes in gold and silver, for example, and this set is popular with people involved with high-end products and outlets," Ms Ho says.
A line of 'rubber touch' neck stands in matt black also attracts attention. "These versions are especially appreciated at trade fairs, where buyers handling, say, a necklace will incidentally also feel the soft touch of the stand," she adds, noting that these models can be custom-made in any colour.
Ms Ho notes that packaging is a very competitive industry, and that Intercom must chase the market with better service and more consistent and reliable quality. "Our goal is the repeat order, which says that the buyer is satisfied with our products," she points out.
"It is pointless to try and compete on price alone and keeping to production and delivery deadlines is just as important, as is giving good service from the sample stage right through to the end product," says Ms Ho. "We also try to help solve a client's problems, rather than giving them new ones."
Raw material price increases are affecting business. "Price increases impact this industry a lot and we have to think really hard about how to accommodate more expensive materials," Ms Ho laments.
Despite these hiccups, jewellery and watch cases continue as best-selling items. "Apart from Hong Kong's substantial watch and jewellery industry, we enjoy excellent demand from overseas for boxes for watches, rings, earrings, bangles, pendants, bracelets and jewellery sets," says Ms Ho.
"We export worldwide, and have extensive business in Europe, the US, Japan, the Middle East and Southeast Asia. While it is true that we do a lot of OEM/ODM work, we also design according to our customers' wishes," she adds.
An in-house R&D team comes up with new suggestions on a monthly basis. "Apart from that, our travelling sales teams come back with market news and ideas for us to consider."
Intercom identifies Russia and Eastern Europe as coming markets. "We meet lots of potential customers from these areas when attending fairs," says Ms Ho. "Compared with other markets, these places are growing fast. We are planning to work more closely there."
It is clear that Intercom Packaging Co Ltd has its business interests well packaged and intends to continue its winning ways.
TEXT BY TONY HENDERSON
|Intercom Packaging Co Ltd
Chevalier Commercial Centre
8 Wang Hoi Rd
Kowloon Bay, Kowloon
|Year Established: 1982|
Major Product Categories: display, items, jewellery packaging, watch boxes, optical cases, coin boxes and packaging for pens
Brands & Certificates: ISO 9001
Minimum Order: -
Monthly Production Capacity: -
Delivery Time: 45 days
Factory Size & Location: 100,000 square metres; Huizhou