It was my first visit to Korea, and I was not quite sure what to expect.
On my arrival at Incheon Airport , Mr. Yoo of TRIANON CO.,LTD. was there to meet me, and after seeing me after a 16 hour flight from Malpensa (via Hong Kong), he decided that a good nights rest was required. In fact my flight with Cathay Pacific had in fact been excellent, but it does not matter how comfortable one is, or how well looked after, 16 hours in a plane is always 16 years.
I was staying at the Novotel Ambassador Hotel which is located in the financial quarter of Seoul. The service and rooms were great.
The sales system is different to that in Europe. The products are displayed so that potential clients can see and feel the products, but the sales goods that the client might buy are kept in a stock room, behind the sales point.
Cleanliness, order, and service are the by-words for Trianon. I was especially impressed with the sales staff. Very professional, and people who actually knew about the products that they were selling.
Although Seoul has a very vibrant business community, it is also a place to visit. The Royal Palace that can be found on the northern side of the river is a must to see. It also has a very interesting reconstruction of an old Korean village.
Before closing this very brief article, I would just like to thank Mr. and Mrs Yoo, their daughter Jeanne, and Kim, for making me feel so welcome in their Country.
If you would like to know more about our products in Korea, please contact:
The story of steel starts right back to around 4000BC , but the real production of steel did not start until 1300-1400BC; in Eastern Africa, and later by the Spartans who were known to have produced steel in large quantities.
How did the Ancient blacksmiths make their steel? Well, they started by heating an iron bar until it arrived at a specific colour, and then hammered the iron, forcing out the impurities (carbon). If you watch a blacksmith at work, you will see the impurities in the form of sparks.
In the ancient world, steel was a precious product, and could only be made by hand. The secrets of making swords and knives were passed down from generation to generation. A typical “recipe” for sword making would be as follows:
Heat the iron until the colour of the setting Sun.
Hammer the iron flat.
Heat the iron again, and make a cut half way down the length of iron.
Fold the iron (2 layers) and beat into shape.
Heat the iron again, and repeat (3) and (4) ten times.
Heat the steel and twist it.
Beat it once again into shape.
Heat it for the last time and “quench” it in urine.
The sword blade is ready!
You may be surprised that urine was used, but in one historical account only urine of a red headed boy could be used! And this process left the most incredible “etched” designs on the blade.
Up until the 19th century, the manufacture of steel relied almost exclusively on the skill of the blacksmith; meaning that it could not be used in engineering or construction, as it could not be massed produced.
This is why all the metal bridges of the 19th century were made from iron.
In 1879 the then longest bridge in the world collapsed (The Tay Bridge Disaster), causing the death of 75 people. It was later found that although iron resisted extremely well under compression, it was very bad under tension.
If you conduct a tension test on an iron bar, it will snap clean, and the snap being where there is the greatest concentration of carbon.
In the late 1800’s the production of steel could be massed produced by the invention of the Bessemer Converter. This was like a very large iron bucket full of molten iron. With air being pumped into the base of the bucket. The air (containing oxygen) would combine with the carbon in the iron and would produce carbon dioxide.
The idea was brilliant, but it failed for a very simple reason. To make good steel required a carbon content of 1%, and there was no accurate means of knowing when the Bessemer converter had obtained this value. However a metallurgist called Sidney Gilchrist Thomas came to the rescue with a very simple solution. He suggested that all the carbon should be extracted from the iron, and then the 1% carbon content added afterwards. It worked, and over night Great Britain became the worlds greatest producer of steel, which in turn fired the Industrial Revolution to even greater heights, and opened the door to the modern era.
Sometimes it is interesting to see how a new cutlery model takes it’s first steps to becoming a reality, from a simply hand drawing, to the final production model.
Below you can see the original hand drawing of the ferrule used on our model “Georgian”, the ferrule was created and the design registered by John L Aldridge. John L Aldridge has also created Eme models Aria, Iso, and Lace.
From this drawing we obtain the first 3D design using an Auto-Cad type computer program.
From the Auto-Cad drawing we obtain the “coordinates” required to create the tooling.
Checks are made so that we are quite sure that no errors have been made in the 3D coordinates. This is very import, as once the tooling is made, very few modifications can be made afterwards.
The tooling is made by using electrolysis, and becomes a reverse image of the finished product, similar to an engraving.
Once the tooling has been completed, we can begin production of the new ferrule.
This app has not had the official approval of Eme Posaterie Srl, and therefore will not be available in Italy (friends excluded), or any other country that does not fall within the jurisdiction of John L Aldridge.
A link for downloading the app will only be sent on receipt of a formal request, and only when such request has been approved.
All successful requests will be sent an email with the discount to be used in the app.
The App will be available for downloading as from 1st May 2013
Most web sites are created to communicate in a one way direction. That is, to present to potential clients, and clients new and old; items, products, or services that can be offered.
I would like to turn the whole situation on its head by requesting all my readers to send me any ideas, or ideas for products, that they may have that they feel could have a demand within their market place.
Once upon a time, it was easy to have an idea created locally, but with the advent of the global market, this has sadly become very difficult. BUT not impossible.
Any ideas received by me and accepted for further development, will be covered by contract, and will offer the “innovator” a royalty.
I have invented many products in my life (light fittings, bags, cutlery).
There was one particular bag (travel bag) that I had invented. I tried to get it made in Italy, but nobody was interested. Today that bag has sold in its millions! And I still kick myself for not looking further a field, and believing in my own product.
So come on. If you have half an idea, put it on paper, and lets see what we can do.
Eme Posaterie are at Macef and Ambiente 2013 Trade Fairs
Just to remind all our clients about the forthcoming trade fairs.
As you can see below, we will be present at both Macef and Ambiente.
We will be launching a number of innovative designs which I am sure will meet with your interest.
Trade Fairs are important as they allow you the possibility of physically seeing and feeling the products; and equally important, meeting the people that you may be doing business with in the future.
The role of the export manager is not only to sell but to advise. As the export manager of Eme (John L Aldridge), I have never sold a product to a client that I thought that they could not sell, and I have always made it a point to be available to my clients – their personal “back office”.
My aim has always been to create a long term, no pressure, business relationship with my clients. A philosophy that I have seen work so well over the years.
If you have never worked with Eme, and you are planning to visit one of the above fairs, please feel free to visit our stand, and ask for me in person. I will be more than pleased to share with you my product knowledge, as well as design and coordination experience. I will do my very best to help you arrive at the right decision.
Everybody knows who Amazon is; we also know that they have lately been in the news over their imaginative views on how taxes should be paid.
As a private individual, and also as a supplier to John Lewis, I would like to take the opportunity of explaining why Eme Posaterie will never work with Amazon.
To begin with, I completely agree with Mr. Andy Street, the Managing Director of John Lewis who stated in The Telegraph that multinational companies that do not pay their fair share of national taxes, will “out-invest and ultimately out-trade” their competitors within each respective nation.
As a private individual that has been an Amazon client; I would like to take this criticism a little further, and extend the above observation to include “total lack of transparency and trade ethics”.
Having recently bought a cover for a tablet. The cover was paid for, but the cover never arrived. I complained to Amazon, and found that not only was the product supplied directly from a company in Hong Kong, but Amazon also took the time to inform me of their position:
“Orders on the Marketplace platform are strictly between the buyer and the Seller and Amazon.co.uk isn’t directly involved in these orders and isn’t an agent on behalf of either the Seller or buyer. We can only confirm the delivery method of a Marketplace order by e-mail.”
However, on the Amazon website, it states something completely different:
“You can buy with confidence anytime you purchase products on the Amazon.com website. That is why we also guarantee purchases made within the Amazon.com Marketplace. Both the condition of the item you buy and its timely delivery are guaranteed under the Amazon A-to-z Guarantee.”
Either Amazon works as a charity, which I doubt; or receives a commission/royalty on the products sold, which I believe is closer to the truth.
But there is another point that I would like to make. From the above statements it would seem that Amazon is not legally bound to protect their clients interests when they buy products (from 3rd parties) through their web site. While John Lewis is!
In my case, I did not see the “Dispatched from and sold by” notice; I was more interested in the price and customer reviews. But this whole story did make me reflect on how major website operators work.
We have a company like John Lewis that pays taxes, creates jobs, and goes to great efforts in guaranteeing the source of their products, through the SEDEX organisation which has become an integral part of the John Lewis supply chain (*)
At this year’s trade fairs atAmbiente and Macef, we did have visits from Amazon. They were not interested to visit our factory, or for that matter a meeting of any kind. Their only interest was for Eme to complete a suppliers spread sheet, and to start work as soon as possible. After much reflection, I refused to comply. I cannot say how many companies Amazon representatives visited during the fairs, but speaking to my colleagues, I would say a lot. NOTHING TO LOSE, ALL TO GAIN.
Almost any company (if not every company) can sell through Amazon Marketplace or Pro-Merchant Seller, and it would seem that no controls are in place to check for infringements of human rights within the manufacturing chain of their suppliers (I leave it to Amazon to prove otherwise – I could find no information on this subject on their web site).
There is one other important point to be made. Eme Posaterie exports to 5 Continents. As export manager, I have the pleasure in dealing with some great people; some of which I have known for many years. The common denominator is that they are people, and not a computer web page; and as such, we communicate together, and work together. Working for a mutual common good. I would never put this arrangement at risk for an organisation like Amazon.
I have never been a great supporter or believer in the “global market”, and it seems that I may have been right. But Amazon is a global company operating within a global market, and writing the rules as they go. You cannot pretend to stay at the best hotel in town, and not pay for the services!
(*) Sedex, the Supplier Ethical Data Exchange, is a non profit membership organisation, dedicated to driving improvements in responsible and ethical business practices in global supply chains. Sedex’s core product is a secure, online database which allows members to store, share and report on information.