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Electronics Production |

Turning a Chinese brand into a European company

Earlier in January this year, Luxshare ICT (Europe) celebrated its tenth anniversary. Although the Luxshare name has a much longer history, its success in Europe necessitated reshaping its identity to conquer new frontiers.

Luxshare Europe was registered and commenced activities in 2014 with the initial goals of not only gaining business for Luxshare group within Europe, but also – and probably even more importantly – promoting the Luxshare name within the European electronics landscape.

The man tasked to pull this off was Colin Eckersley, the Managing Director of Luxshare ICT (Europe). Luxshare might be a household name within the electronics industry in Asia, but in Europe – few recognised the name, something Mr Eckersley became acutely aware of – To a case of “Who is Luxshare, never heard of them?”. Overcoming scepticism, building trust, and aligning with European norms, while emphasizing and promoting the company’s regional design capabilities where the initial challenges faced

Initially, Mr Eckersley's focus at the helm of the European entity was cables and connectors, as this was his working background. Over the years this has changed – and significantly at that – due to Luxshare Group’s growth via vertical integration and acquisitions which have exponentially increased its product range and active sectors.

Mr Eckersley went from working with market-leading companies who everyone knew, to working with a massive company that nobody knew – which meant that marketing became, and to some degree still is, crucial. Operating as an EMS provider you are essentially the “Giant behind the brand” – but the giant also needs to be on people's radar.

Luxshare-ICT Europe has been operating for 10 years now. What would you say are the main differences from when you started and where the company is now?

“Over the past 10 years, Luxshare-ICT Europe has undergone remarkable growth. While Luxshare was already an established manufacturer in China, the name carried little brand recognition in the European market when I first knocked on doors trying to promote our services. The main difference from when Luxshare-ICT Europe started 10 years ago is we've grown from a relatively unknown company to a world leader in electronics manufacture with a complex global manufacturing footprint and much broader, diverse product lines serving wider markets,” Mr Eckersley tells Evertiq.

The managing director continues to say that the company’s brand recognition and customer awareness has dramatically increased in Europe over the past decade.

Today Luxshare is a major EMS company, involved in many market sectors. And to be able to fully utilise these muscles Colin built a strong, diverse team to ensure that the European company was able to take advantage of the new opportunities presented by the group’s expansion.  

Luxshare, being an established Chinese company and brand trying to make a mark for itself in Europe, what would you say were the biggest challenges in this?

“The biggest initial challenges bringing our Chinese brand to Europe involved overcoming scepticism, building trust and name recognition from scratch, adapting our business workflows and materials to align with European norms, and convincing customers we offered extensive R&D/innovation beyond stereotypical contract manufacturing,” Mr Eckersley explains.

When Chinese companies seek to expand to Europe they often have to undergo a Europeanization to fully establish themselves on the market. Something that the managing director is fully aware of.

“As someone with deep European industry experience, I focused on modifying documentation, sales materials, and our web presence to cater to the local market, promoting our regional design capabilities, establishing competent Europe-based service/support operations, and hiring European executives who understood continental norms and requirements.”

However, that was not all, even such things as adapting Luxshare’s image, documentation processes and even aspects of the website to align better with European business norms and expectations proved essential in those “Europeanization” efforts – which were crucial for gaining an initial foothold.

“Reshoring” and “producing for the region in the region” are business philosophies and strategies that we here more and more of – how does this approach affect Luxshare ICT’s European business?

“Luxshare has responded proactively to reshoring trends and geopolitical tensions related to manufacturing localisation by expanding production across regions. Over time, Luxshare has expanded an enormous geographic manufacturing footprint across China, Southeast Asia, India and now South America to align production sites with customer proximity preferences that shift amid reshoring trends and geopolitical tensions,” Mr Eckersley explains to Evertiq.

Luxshare’s European company is now 10 years old and the managing director has his sights set on 2024 and beyond.

As a decade-old organisation, Luxshare-ICT Europe has built a robust foundation of loyal customers across the consumer electronics, automotive, medical, and industrial segments – the plan now high-growth product areas.

“Our aim moving forward is leveraging those client relationships and Luxshare’s manufacturing expertise to expand into emerging high-growth product areas where we can create a real competitive edge. The future remains bright for Luxshare within Europe and internationally as we enter this next chapter built upon the trust earned through our quality reputation during the past 10 pioneering years in the region,” Colin Eckersley concludes.

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July 23 2024 1:29 am V22.5.13-2