Bethlehem Knitting (百利恒織造廠) and Hing’s Underwear (興士牌)

York Lo: Bethlehem Knitting (百利恒織造廠) and Hing’s Underwear (興士牌)

Bethlehem Knitting Image 1 York Lo

Left: Hing’s print ad from the early 1970s. Right: actual package of Hing’s underwear

From the 1950s to the 1970s, Hing’s was a popular local brand of cotton underwear manufactured by Bethlehem Knitting Factory.  Founded in 1950 by C.T. Shiu (邵之道), the firm moved into its current location at 483 Castle Peak Road in Cheung Sha Wan in 1961. Aside from the local market, Hing’s underwear were also exported to Southeast Asia in markets such as Singapore and Malaysia in the 1960s. By its 20th anniversary in 1970, the firm had 400 workers. In addition to underwear, the firm also made T-shirts. The next year, the firm was incorporated.

Bethlehem Knitting Image 2 York Lo

News article about CT Shiu and his wife visiting the US and Canada in 1967. 香港工商日報 1967-8-20

From the beginning, Bethlehem focused on product quality rather than low prices. In 1975, Bethlehem acquired new machines which made its undershirts shrink-resistant. The new and improved line of underwear were sold with the “Shringaniz” trademark. At the time, the factory occupied five floors totaling 30,000 sq ft and employed 250 workers.

Bethlehem Knitting Image 3 York Lo

Article about Bethlehem’s new Shringaniz technology in 1975 (華僑日報, 1975-04-15)

Bethlehem Knitting Image 4 York Lo

Wedding notice of Alan Siu in 1980 (華僑日報, 1980-08-4)

In the 1970s, CT Shiu’s son Alan Siu Kwok-wei (邵國維) who was graduated from UC Berkeley and Stanford joined the family business and became executive director of Bethlehem. The firm is still alive although it appear to have shifted its focus to the overseas markets such as Indonesia.

Sources (other than the ones listed above):

  1. 香港工商日報, 1970-05-29, 1961-05-27
  2. http://eresources.nlb.gov.sg/newspapers/Digitised/Article/nysp19650316-1.2.32.8
  3. http://eresources.nlb.gov.sg/newspapers/Digitised/Article/nysp19641230-1.2.24.4

This article was first posted on 6th November 2017.

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