Merchandising manager to set up supply base

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 17 March, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 17 March, 2007, 12:00am

A merchandiser who can share expertise with a team and maintain relationships with vendors is required for a managerial role at a family-run business.

Established in England in 1970, Baylis & Harding is a fast-growing independent personal care and gifts company. Its products are available in department stores and supermarkets in the United States, Britain, Europe and Asia.

'This is a good industry to be in - it is a consumable that everybody needs on a daily basis,' said Faye Man, human resources and administration manager for the company. 'We offer the magic touch to make time spent in the bathroom a lot more enjoyable.'

The company, which has an annual turnover of GBP25 million (HK$377.9 million), is expanding its sourcing activities in Asia and needs a merchandising manager with an extensive knowledge of Asian factories and vendors to join its Hong Kong buying office.

Applicants should have at least six years' relevant sourcing experience and a background in gifts, toiletries and personal-care products.

'We are interested in self-taught individuals who can resolve problems logically,' Ms Man said. 'Educational qualifications are not the keys to success; experience and being a team player are.'

The appointee will report to the global sourcing manager based in Britain (where the training is also conducted), and together they will head the company's product line strategies and directions.

He or she will work closely with the quality assurance manager to ensure factories and products reach quality standard, while co-operating on factory audits, evaluations and ensuring vigilance on product quality.

'This role will be very important to the company, which wants to bring the merchandising functions under one umbrella,' Ms Man said.

The manager will be responsible for managing product sourcing and developing a stable supplier base in Asia. He or she will do this by drawing on the company's previous experience in supplier selection.

The appointee, who will work closely with buying teams in Europe and the US, will also be responsible for new product development. A thorough understanding of the US and UK markets would therefore be an advantage. The appointee should be able to negotiate effectively with overseas buyers and vendors.

This leadership position involves guiding the six-person merchandising team in Hong Kong in sourcing, product development and cost negotiation. The manager would be expected to provide motivation, inspiration and training.

'The real highlight of the role is having the freedom to input ideas, mould the merchandising team and help establish the base in Hong Kong,' Ms Man said.

Set up in 2003, the local office is relatively new and still establishing itself. This is a position for someone who is innovative, spontaneous and looking for a challenge.