Case Study

Sustainable Packaging

Sustainable Packaging

Sustainable packaging is an increasingly important trend within many markets, and ET2C has an established network of factories already working with sustainable materials.

Integrity and Accountability

ET2C is a comprehensive global sourcing company that is committed to providing businesses with access to low-cost country  manufacturing territories (China, India and Vietnam). We offer multi-industry sourcing services to startups, medium to large retailers and wholesalers that are seeking quality-assured products and sourcing strategies from Asia.

Services Used

About The Client

The US company is a leading supplier of both custom and standard packaging, including glass and plastic containers. The company is always looking for innovative packaging solutions for its clients. Operating across a range industry segments (beauty, pharmaceuticals, food & beverage, and household), the company can provide, source or create the container and closure that best satisfies the products’ requirements.

The Challenges

In line with global trends, the client received an increase in the number of enquiries for sustainable packaging alternatives. They wanted to understand what options of sustainable packaging were possible from the Asian manufacturing base but did not have the reach or network on the ground to identify the right suppliers. The aim was to provide their clients with options for alternative packaging for their products.

The Solution

The client reached out to ET2C to leverage our on-the-ground sourcing expertise in Asia. Having already established a network of factories that are using sustainable materials, we were well placed to offer them some ideas for their clients. We focused on the beauty/personal healthcare segment and presented jars, bottles, and caps that were made of bamboo.

Results

Using ET2C’s sourcing capability allowed our client to quickly meet customer demand and generate additional revenues with a sustainable packaging line that is both relevant and price competitive in the market. Having the ability to simultaneously access multiple sourcing markets was key in understanding which market and factory was the best fit, which ultimately aided the execution of the project.

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Virtual Factory Tours

Virtual Factory Tours

ET2C’s Virtual Factory Tours gives you visibility across your Supply Base at a time when international borders are closed due to the Pandemic.

Executive Summary

ET2C’s Virtual Factory Tours gives you visibility across your Supply Base

As a US Packaging company, the Client needed to have visibility of a recently onboarded supplier and was looking for options in the face of travel restrictions. Working with ET2C gave them the ability to virtually visit the manufacturer, gaining visibility of the management and the production process, which allowed them to promote the supplier both internally and externally.

Services Used

About The Client

The US company is a leading supplier of both custom and stock packaging of containers, closures and decorating. It serves a wide range of customers across the US and internationally as well in all the major consumer and industrial market segments. They source some components and packaging options from Asia as part of their packaging capability for their customers.

The Challenges

The Pandemic has reduced access to some of their key manufacturing markets. As part of their sourcing strategy, they would schedule visits out to Asian trade shows and to factory sites to meet with their suppliers, assess samples and look at any innovation coming into the market. With borders essentially shut, this was no longer possible and they felt that they were losing competitive advantage due to factory relationships becoming increasingly distant.

The Solution

The Client was looking for options to get closer to the factories and decided to use ET2C’s unique Virtual Factory Tours solution for a recently onboarded supplier. This allowed the client to set out some key questions to discuss with the factory management, as well as a broad run through of the factories production line (given the time difference it was not practical to have a live video stream). The pre-determined structure allowed ET2C to deliver visibility across the Supplier and the facility.

Results

The video provided the Client with the visibility they needed. This covered key questions from management, which gave insight into the factory’s plans for the future, their production process and capability with the machinery on site. The Client commented the virtual factory visit was very impressive, particularly the machines and how the products are being made. It also demonstrated how ET2C’s Quality Team inspect our products because our clients are always asking us how our suppliers manage the quality of the goods.

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Soluciones de proveeduría para una gran cadena de supermercados

Procurement solutions for a large supermarket chain

Executive Summary

Having the right ally to expand supply from Asia may not be so easy for a retail store chain despite having an office in China dedicated to developing products and suppliers. The challenge was to find transparency, quality and better proposals for footwear, all this was found thanks to the wide range of suppliers offered by ET2C International.

Services Used

Buying office

Quality assurance

About The Client

With a global supply office located in Asia and strict control and supervision of suppliers, one of the largest supermarket chains in the world continues to face the complexity of finding factories that not only have the capacity for high production volumes, but also present attractive proposals in the required price range and can become true business allies.

The Challenges

Due to its terms and conditions, as well as the lengthy processes and audits to become a supplier to this supermarket chain, it is very difficult for factories in Asia to start this process or to meet all the requirements.

Specifically, the vulcanized footwear category had an opportunity in its stores to grow with imported merchandise, where new and better proposals than national suppliers were shown, since production processes and costs are more competitive in the Asian market for this type. of footwear.

The challenge implied new vulcanized shoe options, with more stylized lasts, production with high quality standards and within the target price.

The Solution

After a long search for suppliers, our client found in ET2C a viable solution to grow, develop and produce this category of vulcanized casual sneakers in Asia. He worked hand in hand with his design team to present a collection with on-trend materials and prints, with the aim of achieving a family program that included footwear for women, men and children.

Results

This supermarket chain found the ideal business partner in Asia that it had been looking for so much despite having an office in that region, which left for granted the capabilities, reach and access that ET2C International has to a wide range of suppliers, as well as such as the flexibility to find a customized solution regardless of the size of the client, providing winning proposals thanks to its extensive knowledge of the market. Our client achieved sales growth year after year and satisfied a high demand for this type of footwear among its target market.In addition to taking care of each part of the production process, we know the importance of a satisfactory factory audit or the approval of a finished product inspection report. We know how to add value to your operations with Asia and be a true ally.

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The Benefits of ET2C’s Buying Office Solution

The Benefits of ET2C's Buying Office Solution

Accessing the Asian Industrial manufacturing sector to drive margin growth

Executive Summary

Leverage the benefits of Asian Sourcing

A large listed UK retailer with scale and a sourcing resource was looking to drive down product costs from China.   Even with its own Hong Kong base, they partnered with ET2C to quickly establish their own dedicated team, which delivered net product cost savings of 20% in year one compared with their incumbent sourcing partner.

Services Used

About The Client

A large UK listed retailer, with top line revenue of over £1,000 million and over 10,000 employees, which serves the high street and the travel sectors.

The Challenges

Even with an Asian Sourcing operation in Hong Kong, the company was reliant on a large trading house for its China sourcing.   The result was a lack of visibility with the factories across product as well as pricing.

This was at a time when the company were looking to improve margin and drive bottom line growth.   However, setting up an operation in China can be costly and prohibitive for the size of team that was needed to access the broader manufacturing sector.  They needed a cost-effective solution that provided an upstream capability and delivered the cost savings required.

The Solution

We were able to quickly identify their needs and help them set up a dedicated team in China. Our solution provided speed to market and gave them access to the resource and expertise they needed not only to identify new and more favourable suppliers but also drive down product costs without compromising quality. In fact, they also developed a quality resource that they could use regionally across China that was completely aligned to their needs.

As opportunities presented themselves in other markets (Vietnam & Turkey), the Sourcing Director leveraged ET2C’s wider footprint and used headcount in their markets to identify sourcing opportunities.

Results

ET2C helped our client access a market and drive significant benefits. The client is still with us almost ten years later!

The key benefits are:

Generated net savings of 20% of product cost in Year 1

Able to push forward their China Sourcing strategy with a dedicated ‘on the ground’ team

Flexible solution allowed access to other Asian sourcing markets, like Vietnam

By partnering with ET2C, they relied on our local operational expertise without having to establish their own entity

It is no wonder that the Sourcing Director still to this day says that ET2C is the lowest cost option for any China Sourcing strategy.

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Covid-Mask

Third Party Quality Control

Third Party Quality Control

Implementing an upstream quality control program to provide reassurance on product quality before shipping the products

Executive Summary

Upstream Third Party Quality Assurance Services to Manage a Complex Regulatory Environment!

A European Government Department identified the need for an at the source quality assurance capability to confirm the quality of PPE products being purchased from Chinese Suppliers.  There was significant risk around funds paid pre-shipment, local and domestic regulatory environment as well as general product quality. ET2C were very quickly able to provide visibility of product quality pre-shipment making sure that there were no costly mistakes.

Services Used

About The Client

A European Government Department with responsibility to procure PPE at the height of the Covid-19 Pandemic for the healthcare sector.

The Challenges

Global demand had far outstripped supply leading to considerable risk; there was a lack of transparency across the supplier base (no travel possible), funds required upfront and questions around product quality.  Having visibility of what was being purchased at the source was essential to ensure that the stock was to the correct quality standards required at a sector and product level.

The Solution

ET2C quickly mobilised an upstream quality assurance capability in China. This allowed Quality control inspectors to visit the various factory sites to conduct a detailed quality inspection of the PPE products, deliver a clear report and provide the information required to make a decision to pay the balance and ship the stock.

As well as conducting final inspection checks, we were also able to check raw material deliveries to assess the suppliers’ ability to produce the quantities within the lead time and also to the quality standards.

In addition, ET2C’s quality team also validated the necessary product and supplier certifications as part of the Third Party Quality Assurance Services to provide an additional layer of confidence on both export of the products out of China and import into the European Union.

Results

The client was able to pay in advance of shipment with the knowledge that the products were on specification and the certifications were valid.   Ultimately, this protected taxpayer’s money and made sure that there were no costly quality issues.

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Sourcing Services for a Young Growth Company

Sourcing Services for a Young Growth Company

Helping a Young Company grow their business by providing our local Asian resource to manage their suppliers

Executive Summary

Make your Supply Chain Transformational for your Business!

A young growth company that was having issues managing China suppliers at arm’s length.  Having identified the need for an upstream resource and by partnering with ET2C, the Founders were able to transform their business and focus on giving their customers what they wanted.

About The Client

Kapow Meggings is a young e-commerce disrupter bringing ‘Meggings’ (Men’s Leggings) to the mainstream.  The founders, two Australian brothers (Jordan & Ben) identified an opportunity to make men’s leggings and market them across the US, UK, EU and Australia.

The Challenges

As with any young company, there always going to be limited resource.   Marketeers by background, and without a presence in Asia, their China sourcing strategy relied upon platforms like Alibaba.  Although they managed to get stock to market, there was a lack of visibility around production, lead times and product quality.Having done all the hard work developing their customer base, this was having a detrimental impact on their business with stock not arriving for peak seasons and returns becoming more common.

The Solution

We were immediately able to help them on the ground with our product knowledge and supply base. As a first step, we provided visibility on their incumbent supplier with visits to check on production and quality inspections. We were also able to address production times, implement quality standards relevant for the product and the markets that they were selling into and identify new suppliers that would support their growth over the medium term.

“I’m not sure where our business would be right now without ET2C. When we decided we needed a Sourcing Company to handle factory liaisons, production, and quality control for us, they stood head and shoulders above the other companies we interviewed.” Ben, founder, Kapow Meggings

As well as continuing with a China sourcing strategy, we are now looking further afield for other markets across Asia to support their ranges and their growth.

Results

ET2C helped Kapow control their supply chain and this has had a transformational impact on their business. They can now focus on developing their ranges and ensuing that they are delivering the products that their customers are asking for.

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Leveraging Benefits of Asian Sourcing

Leveraging Benefits of Asian Sourcing

Accessing the Asian Industrial manufacturing sector to drive margin growth

Executive Summary

Low Cost Country Industrial Manufacturing Made Easy

As a UK OEM of industrial food processing machinery, Baker Perkins needed to increase capacity without increasing capital spend on new machinery and overhead.   Working with ET2C gave them an ability to fully leverage the benefits of the Asian manufacturing without repeating past mistakes.

About The Client

Baker Perkins is a medium-sized industrial manufacturing business, with an established supply base both in the U.K. and Eastern Europe. They needed to look for additional manufacturing bases to enhance their manufacturing capability. This included high pressure Aluminium die cast moulds, injection moulded plastic parts, rubber moulds, machined items, along with large scale fabricated stainless steel industrial ovens.

The Challenges

Although they had previously tried to source from the Far East on an ad-hoc basis, it had not generated any results due to a lack of local knowledge and having the resource to manage the suppliers at source.  As a result, the Board had many reservations at looking again for industrial manufacturing in the Far East but it was seen as strategically necessary to leverage the benefits of the Asian supply base.

The Solution

With our local expertise with industrial manufacturing,  we were very quickly able to provide them visibility across the critical path; from walking them through onboarding suppliers, establishing quality standards, price negotiations through to the shipping.   Communication has been integral to quickly establishing a collaborative partnership over the past 18 months making sure that we provide a high service level whether it be response times for quotation, a willingness to proactively help with the manufacturing process or addressing lead times.  We have made it our business to understand their business to allow us to act in our client’s best interest. The Function that ET2C provides in terms of the liason between us and the suppliers, finance and processing orders, expediting shipping and supplier sourcing has been absolutely key to the success we have enjoyed so far Alan Woodbridge, Procurement Manager.

Results

Low cost country sourcing has provided Baker Perkins with various advantages:

Increased sales opportunities through cost leadership opportunities

Margin growth

Additional Capacity without increasing overhead

Reduced workload in our own manufacturing facility to save on local overhead

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