11 Aug 2004
Hong Kong Enterprise
Winners of The 2003 Hong Kong Awards for Industry: Export Marketing
Hong Kong Awards for Industry:
The Hong Kong Awards for Industry: Export Marketing trophy is the ultimate recognition for any Hong Kong company working to promote itself in the global marketplace.
Organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (TDC), the Export Marketing Awards were established 11 years ago as part of the larger Hong Kong Awards for Industry scheme.
The Export Marketing segment of the awards aims to heighten awareness among Hong Kong manufacturers and traders of the importance of export marketing strategies, methods and techniques.
"Buyers will always be interested in learning about the skills displayed by the award winners and this, in turn, will help generate more confidence in Hong Kong exporters," says TDC senior publications manager Henry Ng.
He notes that it is appropriate for the TDC, with its worldwide network and experience in organising trade fairs and trade events, to be the organiser for this category.
There are three levels for the Hong Kong Awards for Industry: the Export Marketing Grand Award; Export Marketing Award and Export Marketing Certificate of Merit.
The number of entries in each category has increased dramatically in recent years, attesting to the award's increasing importance among all sectors of the local business community.
Beginning with just seven entrants in the first competition in 1992, the 2003 awards saw 21 Hong Kong companies competing to gain recognition of their export marketing skills. "This has also led to a healthy trend of some companies even honing their marketing skills with the specific aim of winning the award," Ng adds.
The performance of each entrant is judged according to:
- market research
- product planning and development
- branding strategies
- pricing strategies and market positioning
- promotional strategies
- distribution channels
- export sales performance
- marketing objectives
- staff motivation
Ng explains that the judges ensure they are scrupulously fair to all the participants from diverse industries by assessing sales performance according to two sets of criteria: sales growth within an industry and market share within that industry.
"The judging criteria in turn also helps companies to improve their export marketing strategies," Ng notes. "Added to this, as the TDC gives extensive publicity to the winners, the export sector as a whole can use these winning strategies to improve their own performance."
For the past decade, Mainland Headwear Holdings Ltd has been contributing to the growing popularity of Hollywood culture, as well as the casual and sporting lifestyle, with its wide range of quality headwear - baseball caps, bucket hats, knitted hats, Gatsby hats, headbands and sun visors.
First established in 1986 as a trading company dealing in gifts, promotional items and headwear products, founders Ngan Hei Keung and his wife Pauline noticed that their headwear products were always the most popular and decided to focus on this market.
Building on the huge success of its first licence in 1988, Mainland Headwear moved rapidly into the licensed headwear business, producing casual and promotional headwear in every shape and form for leading names such as Warner Brothers in the film industry and the NBA, MLB, NCAA, NHL, NASCAR, Manchester United, Nike, Reebok, Timberland, Ellesse and Titleist in the sporting world.
Other developments include uniform caps for fast-food giant Burger King as well as promotional caps for Star Wars III, Michael Jordan's NBA comeback and the exclusive licence for the American national motor sports league, Team Racing Auto Circuit (TRAC).
Today, producing in excess of 25 million hats in 5,000 designs a year for more than 80 of the world's best-known brands, Mainland Headwear is one of the world's leading producers in the licensed casual headwear market.
Mainland Headwear's growth literally took off in 1992 with the opening of its own manufacturing base and its focus on unique digitised embroidery techniques.
Its ability to offer its customers a total solution - from design through manufacture and export - enabled Mainland Headwear to build close and long-term partnerships with its customers.
Production facilities, located on the Chinese mainland in Shenzhen, consist of two adjacent industrial complexes boasting more than 55,000 square metres of production space, eight production lines and 150 digitised embroidery machines.
Together with initiatives such as a testing laboratory, which checks fabrics for possible health risk chemicals such as formaldehyde, and ISO 9001:2000 certification, the quality of Mainland Headwear's products is guaranteed.
The mainland's entry into the World Trade Organization, as well as the Beijing Olympics in 2008, offers many exciting opportunities ahead and Mainland Headwear will be diversifying its product range accordingly.
Baseball caps are still Mainland Headwear's most popular product but the company is now expanding into the golfing, hunting and fishing worlds and sees an increasing trend for fashion headwear.
These new lines will not only create synergies with Mainland Headwear's existing operations, they will also enhance its one-stop solutions by offering a range of new fashion items, as well as T-shirt and cap sets, gloves and scarves to its customers worldwide.
Mainland Headwear Holdings Ltd
Rms 1001-1005, 10/F, Tower 2,
9 Sheung Yuet Rd, Kowloon Bay,
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Established in 1979, Hang Fung Gold Technology Ltd is leading the way for jewellery designers and manufacturers worldwide. Offering designs, manufacturing, research and development, distribution and export of a wide range of gold and other precious metal jewellery, ornaments and giftware, its principal markets include Europe, the US, Southeast Asia, the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong.
"We believe the 21st century marks a golden era for Asia's jewellery industry," says Hang Fung Gold Technology Group president Kathy Ng, noting that Hong Kong Trade Development Council statistics show that Hong Kong's global total exports of jewellery amounted to more than US$9.48bn for the first six months of this year.
"The Hong Kong jewellery industry is anticipating a prosperous future," she believes. "Unique technological support, breathtaking designs and effective distribution channels are extremely crucial to strengthen and expand our global market share."
Committed to exploiting advanced technologies, Hang Fung has successfully developed six patented techniques for manipulating gold, silver and other precious metals.
The use of JewelCAD programs and advanced rapid prototyping machines have also made a significant contribution to the development of the hundreds of new and elegant products produced every month to meet the needs of different markets.
Vertical integration and own brand manufacturing (OBM) supported by constructive, targeted marketing research has seen Hang Fung penetrate the US market with its 3D-GOLD range of 24K gold products.
"We regard the US as a market offering diversified segments for various kinds of 24K gold products, but with little recognition of 24K gold products," Ng adds.
Hang Fung's tailor-made marketing strategy for the American audience involved collaboration with the US media giant CNBC, which deployed Shop NBC's direct TV sales, telephone, internet and mail ordering as multimedia distribution channels that conducted pure gold education, promoted 3D-GOLD brand products, triggered public interest and achieved US$250,000 in hourly revenues.
Hang Fung employs more than 3,000 staff, operates production facilities in Hong Kong and the Chinese mainland covering a total gross area of 200,000 square feet and produces almost eight million items a year.
Having acquired ISO 9001 certification and Hong Kong Q-Mark Service Scheme Certificates, Hang Fung aims to keep on providing excellent quality products to valuable customers around the world.
John Mfg Ltd has been established since 1965, developing unique and innovative electronics and electrical products under its registered Johnlite brand name for distribution to markets worldwide.
Since its founding more than 38 years ago, the company has developed a wide range of electronic, electrical household and lighting products, including powerful candle light power spotlights, radio lanterns, multifunction lanterns, TV lanterns, vacuum cleaners, air fresh ionisers, money detectors, personal security alarms, emergency power failure lights and night lights.
This experience, combined with flexible marketing skills, incentive marketing and innovative R&D teams and the 10-15 new items launched every year, has enabled John to flourish and penetrate a variety of different markets all over the world.
Key to John's marketing strategy are the two factories located on the Chinese mainland in Shenzhen since 1985, which employ more than 2,800 workers who produce the entire product range.
The implementation of quality control systems such as ISO 9002 and ISO 9001 certificates, as well as various quality awards, ensure quality products and customer satisfaction.
John will continue to build on these achievements by developing innovative products and providing excellent services and competitive prices that will ensure the continued success of the Johnlite brand worldwide.
John Mfg Ltd
6/F, Yau Lee Centre, 45 Hoi Yuen Rd,
Kwun Tong, Kowloon, Hong Kong
Founded in 1987, Samsam Productions Ltd has built an integrated operation by appreciating that gift wrapping enhances the recipient's perception of the value of the gift at all stages - when it is carried, when it is displayed with other gifts and when it is unwrapped.
One of the leading manufacturers of gift wrapping, Samsam spearheads a strong trend of innovative and sensory packaging with creative ideas, attractive design, surface treatments, state-of-the-art printing techniques and new product development.
For example, Samsam achieved a 35% increase in sales each year for the past three years by using type more creatively and introducing value-added paper gift bags, PP bags, gift wrap, tissue paper, rigid boxes and greeting cards to its product range in 1998.
Samsam has further extended this customer-first concept by adding 200-300 new designs or items annually and providing a one-stop shop service that includes precision design, printing, manufacturing and packaging utilising advanced equipment.
The company intends to expand its market share and build its reputation by offering a wide range of high-end products on an ODM basis under its own brand name, in line with its commitment to discovering the needs of potential customers.
A new 105,000-square-metre plant in Guangzhou on the Chinese mainland is expected to be in operation by the beginning of 2004, and the addition to the existing plant will allow Samsam to handle large volume printing assignments with fast turnaround times.
Samsam Productions Ltd
3, 4, 7 & 13/F,
Koon Wah Mirror Fty (III) Bldg,
5-9 Ka Hing Rd, Kwai Chung
New Territories, Hong Kong
Founded in Hong Kong in 1970, Starlite Holdings Ltd is a publicly-listed multinational company with a staff of 7,500 and a customer base in Asia, Europe, Africa, Australia and North America.
Wholly-owned subsidiary Starlite Development (China) Ltd was formed in 1998 and has since grown into an internationally recognised supplier of paper products, children's novelty books and art and craft products that meet the needs of international publishers and multinational clients.
Major product lines produced at manufacturing facilities in Shanghai, Shenzhen, Guangzhou and Singapore include photo albums and scrapbook accessories, desktop and wall calendars, greeting cards, children's novelty and picture books, art and craft kits and social stationery.
Starlite Development recently established a highly successful export sales business in the international publishing industry and other mass market/direct selling channels, boosting growth by 450% in the past five years.
This success flows largely from the Starlite Innovation Centre, which provides unique turnkey services that offer customers a one-stop shop solution for the development of new product concepts that meet ever-changing market conditions.
The turnkey services include such key product development elements as structural and paper engineering, material research and sourcing, costing analysis, packaging concept, quality assurance and establishing quality and safety standards.
The aim is to assist customers to accomplish their goals and objectives by providing high quality and innovative product design and cost-effective manufacturing processes to develop outstanding products at the right target price for the market.
These services have enabled Starlite to successfully penetrate the global market and establish strong relationships with leading distributors in different channels, further reinforcing the company's participation in major trade shows and book fairs.
In addition, Starlite has established intimate working relationships with overseas customers through regular visits, brainstorming workshops, videoconferences and exchange of data through electronic media such as the Internet.
Starlite Development has also entered into strategic alliances with selected customers to penetrate new markets with innovative products.
Starlite Development (China) Ltd
3/F, Perfect Ind Bldg, 31 Tai Yau St,
San Po Kong, Kowloon, Hong Kong
A member of the Cheung Kong Group, CK Life Sciences Int'l (Holdings) Inc is the largest listed company on the Growth Enterprise Market of the stock exchange of Hong Kong by market capitalisation (as at September 2003).
CK Life Sciences is engaged in identifying needs and developing revolutionary biotechnology solutions for the improvement of human health and environmental sustainability.
The company focuses on developing patent-protected products that provide new and improved solutions in five market areas:
CK Life Sciences' work primarily involves the application of scientifically advanced methods and processes by which selected microbes with undiscovered potential, particularly yeasts, are activated and acclimatised to perform specific functions in either the human body or the natural environment.
More than 100 product applications have been developed to date, several of which have been launched:
- Eco-fertiliser - NutriSmart
NutriSmart is a range of fertilisers which matches and in many instances outperforms chemical fertilisers in terms of yield, crop quality and cost-efficiency, but has none of the harmful environmental effects of chemical fertilisers.
Unlike traditional chemical fertilisers, NutriSmart contains no soluble nitrogen (N), phosphorous (P) or potassium (K). NutriSmart manufactures N, P or K in the soil, and can provide a "smart" phased interaction with the root system to give the appropriate quantity of nutrients to the crops when nutrients are needed.
- Bioremediation Products - WonderTreat
The WonderTreat range of bioremediation products provides effective, economical and environmentally friendly solutions for organic waste management and water pollution.
WonderTreat contains microbes with specific functions, custom-balanced to meet desired needs and act on different pollutants:
- the removal of bio-available nitrogen and phosphorus
- removal of odours
- reduction of environmental toxins
- reduction of polymeric compounds
- suppression of algal growth
- suppression of pathogen growth
- Nutraceutical Product - VitaGain
VitaGain, a series of immuno-enhancing products, is designed to strengthen and regulate the human immune system, helping the body defend itself against the different challenges of everyday life while also maintaining optimal health.
CK Life Sciences is providing solutions to problems that have either not yet been addressed, or where existing products are unsatisfactory in terms of effectiveness and economics.
Within the product development pipeline are a series of human health-related products such as those dealing with life-threatening diseases like HIV/AIDS and cancers. Research and development of these products has been accelerated and more product launches are expected in the near future.
CK Life Sciences Int'l (Holdings) Inc
2 Dai Fu St, Tai Po Industrial Estate,
Tai Po, New Territories, Hong Kong
MultiVision Systems and Networks Ltd began operations in 1986, focusing on the development of closed circuit television and analogue surveillance equipment while also providing consulting and project management services.
The late 1990s saw MultiVision's business strategy change when chief executive officer and chief technology officer Louis Mak realised digitalisation was the future of the surveillance industry and accordingly shifted the company's focus from analogue to digital video surveillance.
MultiVision has not looked back since, and has gone from strength to strength as a leading provider of digital video surveillance products and solutions.
"While it was a very difficult decision for us to give up our analogue business, we were aware that digital solutions were the way to go in this hi-tech age," Mak says.
He admits that prior to the shift in strategy the company was often unable to meet customers' requirements due to the limitations of the analogue systems.
"With digitalisation, however, we have been able to develop new, innovative surveillance solutions that have been widely accepted in many vertical industries," Mak claims.
"For example, our products have enabled security personnel to remotely monitor premises via the Internet without being physically in the control room. This would not have been possible without a digital platform."
The timing was perfect for MultiVision, which launched its first NetServer product when Hong Kong's Chek Lap Kok International Airport was in the midst of reviewing its security plans.
MultiVision won over the airport authorities with its unique priority pan/tilt/zoom features and integrated management capabilities and today has an extensive client base across the world and different vertical industries.
Past and present customers include the State Rail Authority of New South Wales in Australia, the St Louis School Board in the US, Sociedade de Jogos de Macau in Macau and the Bangkok Transit Rail Authority in Thailand.
MultiVision recently listed its shares on the stock exchange of Singapore, established offices on the Chinese mainland, Macau, the US and Singapore and plans to set up two more offices in Europe and the Middle East by the end of this financial year.
"While we recognise the importance of developing good working relationships with our business partners, we believe our success hinges on the strength and competitiveness of our product and solution offerings," president and chief operations officer Dennis Li insists.
"To this end, we have set up a Product and Solutions Centre in Shenzhen on the mainland, working together with the University of Hong Kong, focusing on the development of new products and solutions such as hardware compression chipsets, advanced compression algorithms, motion detection capabilities and vertical industry enhancements."
Moving forward, MultiVision is confident it will continue to create waves in the international market. "Demand for digital video surveillance products and solutions is expected to remain robust amid continuing advancement in the technology sector and prevailing concerns over security measures," adds Li. "With a good head start in this business, and backed by excellent big customer references, we are confident of maintaining our growth and establishing a strong brand name globally."
Contact DetailsMultiVision Systems and Networks Ltd
26/F, Aitken Vanson Centre,
61 Hoi Yuen Rd, Kwun Tong,
Kowloon, Hong Kong
Neil Pryde Ltd's key business objective for the past five years has been one of revenue growth through diversification. The company's core business for the past 20 years has centred on the sport of windsurfing, where the Neil Pryde brand has established a formidable performance record and enjoys a dominant market share.
Unfortunately, the sport of windsurfing has been in decline over the past five to six years and the company has begun a strategy of diversification involving both the acquisition and creation of several new brands and product lines.
All these new brands and product lines share certain common traits:
- they are all sold through board sport/adventure sports retailers
- they are all high performance, leadership brands in their market segments
- they all occupy premium price points
- each brand requires an "authentic" and compelling brand image and identity
Much of the market research required for the successful implementation of these initiatives came from the market intelligence provided by the distribution partners Neil Pryde established during the successful development of the windsurfing business.
In addition, the Neil Pryde brand name is well known and well respected in windsurfing dealerships around the world; most of which now sell year-round action-sport products and therefore provided a suitable focus for the company's diversification efforts.
As a result of these efforts, Neil Pryde has successfully diversified into the following brands during the past seven years:
- Flow - high performance snowboard bindings, boots and boards
- JPA - custom performance windsurfing boards
- Cabrinha - high performance kiteboarding equipment (kites, boards, bindings and accessories)
Having established Neil Pryde as the number one brand in the sport of windsurfing, the company was determined to match this positioning with all the new brands it introduced over the past few years.
Flow is now the leading independent brand of bindings in snowboarding and JPA boards have established a keen following among windsurfers.
The latter is generally regarded as the one of the most desirable brands among freestyle and wave sailors, particularly in Germany, the world's leading windsurfing market, where JPA has been voted the Most Desired Board Brand in the influential Surf Magazine consumer survey.
The Cabrinha brand was a late entry into the fast-growing world of kiteboarding, yet after less than two seasons it has a top-three position in most leading kiteboarding markets.
This acknowledged leadership position in the branded products sector is matched by an equally determined pricing strategy that has seen Neil Pryde products occupy the higher end of the market scale.
Neil Pryde has also significantly expanded its export business over the years by establishing wholly-owned distribution subsidiaries in the US, France and Germany, its three most important markets.
These companies have provided a vehicle to develop the company's main markets and provide direct communication with consumers while also being responsible for promotional and advertising activities using marketing materials produced both in-house and by external agencies.