Spear and Yips – Pioneers of the HK Shirt Industry

York Lo: Spear and Yips – Pioneers of the HK Shirt Industry Before the war, shirts in Hong Kong were dominated by imported brands from overseas (e.g. Arrow Shirt from America) or the mainland (e.g. Smart Shirt and 555 Shirt from Shanghai).  The first two domestic shirt brands to emerge in the post War period were Spear Shirt (槍牌恤) and […]

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Union (V-Tex) Shirts (伊人恤) – the Rise and Fall of an Iconic Hong Kong Brand

York Lo: Union (V-Tex) Shirts (伊人恤) – the Rise and Fall of an Iconic Hong Kong Brand Left: Close up view of the Union V-Tex booth at the 23rd HK Products Expo in 1966. Right: Governor David Trench (lower right with the hat and glasses) walking by the booths of Union V-Tex (left) and Pak Fah Yeow (right) at the same […]

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K. Y. Shang, the China Can Company and the Development of the Can Industry in Asia

York Lo: K. Y. Shang, the China Can Company and the Development of the Can Industry in Asia In 2010, a 62 year old abandoned mansion and its grounds located at 20 Peak Road on the Peak was sold for HK$750 million. The mansion was the former residence of Kiang-Yuen Shang (項康原, 1895-1968, hereafter referred to as “K.Y. Shang”), the […]

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Lee Yat-Ngok, the Local Printing Press Company and the Development of the Hong Kong Printing Industry

York Lo: Lee Yat-Ngok, the Local Printing Press Company and the Development of the Hong Kong Printing Industry Passengers on the upper deck of westbound trams passing by Wanchai would recall that the first floor of 48-50 Johnston Road was the home to both the Hong Kong Printers Association (香港印刷業商會,  hereafter referred to as “HKPA”) and the Hong Kong Hok Shan […]

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Chi-Chung Yin (尹致中) – King of Needles

York Lo: Chi-Chung Yin (C. C. Yin, 尹致中, 1902-1988) – King of Needles Born into a poor family in the farming village of Laiyang (萊陽) in Shandong Province in 1902, C. C. Yin started working at the age of 13 in nearby Japanese occupied Tsingtao (which was occupied by the Japanese between 1914 and 1922) as an office boy at a […]

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Fung Keong (馮强, 1891-1973) – King of Rubber Shoes

By York Lo For almost half a century stretching from the 1920s to the 1960s, the most popular casual footwear brand in Asia was Fung Keong (馮強). First manufactured in Canton in 1920, and later in Hong Kong and Malaysia, Fung Keong rubber sole canvas shoes had massive appeal during those years of economic hardship due to its affordability and are permanently etched […]

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Ping-Ling Seng (沈炳麟, 1913-2009) – founder of Gloria Weaving & Knitting Co

York Lo: Gloria Weaving & Knitting (大業織造廠) was founded by Ningbonese businessman Ping Ling SENG (沈炳麟, 1913-2009) who first made his fortune exporting straw hats in Shanghai and moved to Hong Kong in 1948. Seng started his philanthropy in Shanghai in the 1930s but instead of using his own name, over the years he has donated hundreds of millions to charities […]

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John Tung (董之英, 1914-1986) of I-Feng Enamelling

York Lo: I-Feng and Freezinhot first caught my attention when I stared up at the third floor exterior of the infamous Chung King Mansion on Nathan Road and spotted the corporate signages. It turns out that I-Feng, which dissolved in 2001 according to Companies Registry record did have its head office in Chung King Mansion. And then I got even […]

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There was something about “Hong Kong Old Mary” – A Transpacific Fortune Built on Trust

Centenarian Mary Wong presenting a lace handkerchief to Princess Margaret and her then husband the Earl of Snowdon in March 1966 when they visited her shop. Her son and daughter in law Mr & Mrs Jimmy Tse were by her side. Source: Wah Kiu Yat Po, 1966-3-4.  York Lo: Mention the Japanese name Oshin, (“Ah Shun” or 阿信 in Cantonese), […]

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Ng Jim Kai (吳東啓) – Financier of the Chinese Revolution and Pioneer of the Garment and Shipping Industries in Hong Kong

York Lo: In 2013, the Ford Motor Company released a 1924 letter which Sun Yat-sen sent to Henry Ford inviting him to open up a plant in south China – the bearer of the letter was a Chinese American merchant named Ng Jim Kai (a.k.a. Ng Tung Kai 吳東啟, 1859-1935). [1] A major financial backer of Sun Yat-sen for over […]

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