Hip British bag brand Zatchels says it plans to make inroads into Asia as its young brand gains international awareness.
Zatchels was established in April 2011 and has its manufacturing base in Leicester, UK. A multi-channel retailer, it has shops in York, Westfield London and now Bath.
Now it says it wants to enter Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia and Singapore to make the most of their young populations and a growing love of products made in Britain among southeast Asians.
The company manufactures and retails, with boutique stores in the UK. Overseas stores are usually operated as concessions in department stores.
The manufacturer already exports a third of the designer satchels and bags made at its factory near Leicester’s city centre to around 90 countries. It makes more than 25 styles of bags, turns over £3.5 million annually and employs 70 people in manufacturing and retail.
The business has just hosted a visit by Douglas Barnes, HM Consul General to Ho Chi Minh City and Director of Trade and Investment Vietnam, to discuss the opportunities available.
MD Dean Clarke, who founded Zatchels with business partner Brian Brady, said exports are a growing and vastly important part of the company’s business plan for 2015 onwards.
“We hope to include Vietnam in those plans, along with other important areas of South East Asia and the Pacific region,” Clarke said in an interview with the Leicester Mercury newspaper.
“Meeting with Mr Barnes gave us the opportunity to further investigate this emerging high growth country in more detail and potentially make influential contacts to help us grow our business in this exciting market.”
Barnes said Vietnam is one of the fastest-growing retail markets in the world and there is a huge demand for products as consumer spending power grows.
“It has a young and dynamic population – with 60 per cent under the age of 30. I am impressed with Zatchels’ hugely ambitious approach to exports which has placed them at the top of their game and I’m keen to help them develop their business in Vietnam.”
Zatchels focuses on making quality leather goods, with each bag made to order. Zatchels currently has 10 Collections designed for men, women and children as well as a range of accessories.