4 Jan 2005
Printing & Paper Products(HKTDC Enterprise, Vol 01,2005)
A Clear Message
At Advance Label Mfy, one of Asia's leading label manufacturers, the focus is on printing adhesive labels for toys, food, household products, consumer goods and electrical appliances.
The company also prints stickers, hang tags, stationery and promotional gifts and premiums, mainly for high-end markets in Japan, North America, Australia and Europe, says Vienna Law, business development manager at the 38-year-old firm.
Production covers the entire printing process from colour electronic pre-press, printing and laminating to embossing, hot foil stamping, die-cutting and binding.
"One advantage we have is that we do everything in-house," Law says, noting that the company utilises offset, silkscreen and letterpress technologies, with digital printing growing in importance.
Advance Label's scrapbook line, which was introduced two years ago, includes stickers, paper and borders used in decorating photo albums. This is a popular line in the US.
Scrapbook packets sell for US$0.40-1.50 FOB Hong Kong per pack (enough to decorate 8-12 pages of a photo album).
OEM orders account for 70% of business, with ODM and the company's own Aha Design brand representing the remainder. Minimum order is 5,000 pieces for branded and ODM items, while there is no minimum requirement for OEM.
After order confirmation, delivery time ranges from one week for simple labels to 3-4 weeks for branded goods.
Tissue maker Luck Tissue Mfy Ltd covers all bases with a product range that includes bathroom tissue, box tissues, pocket tissues, hand towels, kitchen towels and jumbo roll tissues. The company also manufactures plastic tissue dispensers.
"The colour we most use is white, but we can add printing to the paper for items such as company logos or even scents and perfumes. Scented tissue is a new development for us and we've only been offering it for a few months," says Annie Law, marketing manager of the 1989-established firm.
Luck Tissue operates three factories in Guangdong Province on the Chinese mainland, and exports to the US, Asia, Australia and Europe. The mainland is the firm's next target.
The ISO 9001-certified company has developed two brands - Luck and Beaulai - which together account for 10%-20% of its total sales. OEM and private label sales make up the remainder. "We're trying to build the brand and we already sell our branded products in supermarkets in Hong Kong. We're hoping to expand from there," says Law.
Customers can choose from wooden pulp or the more economical recycled paper. Minimum orders vary depending on the product: for example, the minimum is 10,000 pieces for boxed tissues or 100,000 pieces for pocket tissues.
Prices are negotiable depending on the specifications, and the lead time is about 14 days after order confirmation.
Max Fortune Industrial Ltd offers an extensive array of gift bags and gift wrap, while also producing greeting cards, stationery sets and paper plates, cups and napkins.
Gift bags alone account for more than 70% of total production, says senior marketing manager Movie Lau. "It's a growing part of our business. Unlike other printing factories, we create more than 100 designs per month. We have our own in-house designers and we also buy designs from design houses."
The firm's manufacturing operations are based in Foshan and Boluo on the mainland. A third mainland factory is expected to open in February 2005. Current production capacity is one million gift bags and 100,000 rolls of gift wrap per day, all exported mainly to the US and UK.
While the company concentrates on OEM and private label orders, a small percentage of its products bear the firm's Colormax brand. "We use our brand for more high-end goods," says Lau.
Max Fortune's FOB Hong Kong unit prices are US$0.17-0.80 for gift bags and US$0.20-1.50 for Christmas greeting cards. Prices for gift wrap depend on the length of the roll. Minimum order value is US$8,000, with delivery 30 days after order confirmation.
Another major gift bag and gift wrap firm is Samsam Productions Ltd, which turns out 200 million paper or polypropylene bags and 100 rolls of gift wrap annually.
"We focus on value-added gift bags," says general manager June Hui, adding that silk flowers, beaded handles, and the company's patented round handles and decorative cuffs on bags are popular extras.
Metallic embossing on gift wrap has also proved a hit in the company's major export markets in the US and Europe, along with holographic paper and paper with flocking.
Minimum order requirement is 3,000 pieces delivered 45 days after order confirmation. Samsam accepts OEM, ODM and OBM orders (its brand name is Samsam) and maintains an inventory of more than 2,000 designs for Valentine's Day, Easter, Halloween, Christmas, parties and birthdays.
The old refrain about greeting cards as "perfect for all occasions" is a more than apt description of Hong Kong's printing industry capabilities.
WRITTEN BY ANDREA PAWLYNA
Climax Paper Converters Ltd
Comfort Printing Products Co Ltd
Samsam Productions Ltd