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Thread: Contract Manufacturing (Shoes) in China, how?

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    Contract Manufacturing (Shoes) in China, how?

    Hi All

    I have been working on a unique design for sneakers that I would like to have Patented, but it would still need to be manufactured in China (Pricing). I have spoken to numerous people that currently deal with Chinese manufacturers and yes it can be tough at times. Because it is a special new design it will probably need a complete new production line, sampling etc. I was fortunate to visit a large shoe factory in Cape Town earlier this year, but they manufacture a different range. (My design is canvas based shoe - Converse type).
    Would there be any reputable company or organisation that could assist me in the project. There are plenty of companies on the web that promise to take you patent have it licensed and make a success of your design. They charge huge fees for applications etc. but of course we all now how they operate, they won't do nothing but will drain your account and keep on promising you how close they are to getting a contract. As long as you keep on paying.

    thanks in advance.

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    Diamond Member Blurock's Avatar
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    Well, it will cost you an arm and a leg to register your design in China. There will be no guarantees that they will honour your registration as they do not even honour patents. I doubt if you will be able to patent a shoe, because a shoe is not a new concept.

    Is there really no-one that can manufacture the shoes locally, even at a slightly higher cost? If the design is good, the shoe should sell. We are tired of cheap, useless imports and at least you will be contributing to the South African economy and also create a few very needed jobs. Please....
    Excellence is not a skill; its an attitude...

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    Email problem Phil Cooper's Avatar
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    Agreed - patents mean NOTHING in China - they just do their own thing!

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    Diamond Member Justloadit's Avatar
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    Just a rough idea on cost for a patent. Been halfway through one at the moment.

    If you file a PCT patent, which is the one that probably gives you the most time to get all the patents into order, the following

    Provisional, and first filing - PCT - this is not a patent yet, but gives you 18 months to finalise your patent in each country that you select +- R100,000.00.

    Once you filed, it can take up to a year, before examiners come back to you with a search, in which they send you other PCT's or patents that have similar wording or processes or similarities to your PCT filing. You have to then go through this and make sure that your final filing has nothing even similar to the findings of the examiners findings.

    You then patent in each country you wish to have protection. The main countries, excluding China, will set you back about 2 to 3 million Rand.
    After all this, there is no guarantee that you have a valid patent. Once you file in each country, then each country will immediately object, and then they do a search. If they find anything similar to what your patent is, then your patent is rejected.

    It is a very long road, and you have to be very sure that you are unique.

    Let me tell you something, you may think that your idea is unique, but there are 7 billion people on this planet, who are fed the same technological information, taught very similar subjects, and are exposed to the same articles you are. It is very natural that the solution you come with for a problem you experience, some one else has already thought of it.

    Another point, your patent may be rejected on even a brochure or an article which may have been exposed to the public which even remotely refers to what your patent is.
    Victor - Knowledge is a blessing or a curse, your current circumstances make you decide!
    Solar and LED lighting solutions - www.microsolve.co.za

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    Diamond Member adrianh's Avatar
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    Another thing to keep in mind is this: Ok, so you get your patent...what are you going to do if somebody infringes that patent?

    Having a patent doesn't give you protection unless you are willing to pay to enforce that patent...and as we all know, China couldn't care less about patents.

    I'm with you on the 7 billion people, the world is a big place filled with many many bright people.
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    Diamond Member Blurock's Avatar
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    So, are we back to local manufacturing and job creation?
    Excellence is not a skill; its an attitude...

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    Diamond Member adrianh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Blurock View Post
    So, are we back to local manufacturing and job creation?
    ...and unions striking and buggering it up as usual...
    How easily someone is offended is directly proportional to how stupid they are.
    ~GS Elevator

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    Diamond Member Justloadit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrianh View Post
    Another thing to keep in mind is this: Ok, so you get your patent...what are you going to do if somebody infringes that patent?

    Having a patent doesn't give you protection unless you are willing to pay to enforce that patent...and as we all know, China couldn't care less about patents.

    I'm with you on the 7 billion people, the world is a big place filled with many many bright people.
    Remember to get protection in a specific country, requires you to register the patent in that country. Having a patent registered in South Africa, does not protect you in the USA, all it does is that it protects you from the manufacturer in the USA from vending that product in RSA.

    So there is protection, even if manufactured in China, in the countries in which you have registered your patent in. It stops anyone selling your idea/product in that country, as you then attack the importer of the said product.
    Victor - Knowledge is a blessing or a curse, your current circumstances make you decide!
    Solar and LED lighting solutions - www.microsolve.co.za

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    Hi Justloadit, thanks for the very informative reply. Was really under the impression I could have shoe patented for way under 100k. I have spent hours upon hours on web to search for something close to my concept, but have not found anything. What scares me the most is that I am fully convinced my design is unique but to go to all the expense just to have some or other free lance designer having something remotely similar on a blog or design forum or just an article as you mentioned.
    I think the risk is to big and as mentioned I can spend days searching the web, but can not be guaranteeing to find a blog or article on the very big web.
    I wonder weather it would be possible to disclose my idea in confidentiality with an established sneaker manufacturer, without going the patent route? I think that would be safest route.
    Once again thanks for all the feedback from all on the Forum.

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    Diamond Member Blurock's Avatar
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    You may want to discuss your concept with a patent lawyer such as Adams & Adams. They employ engineers and other technical people who may be able to advise you or do a search as to what has been registered already.

    Just be weary of going offshore as you will have virtually no protection against the bigger boys.
    Excellence is not a skill; its an attitude...

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