Chief Client Officer & Founder, Robert Lockyer discusses Delta Global’s stance on sustainability and the importance of understanding today’s luxury consumer with Bloomberg Businessweek/Chinese Edition.
32 fashion brands such as GUCCI and Chanel signed the Fashion Pact in 2019, aiming to combat the climate crisis and reduce environmental pollution. Luxury environmentally friendly packaging solutions have become a new market development opportunity. Sustainable packaging solutions provider Delta Global recorded 55% year-on-year revenue growth in the fiscal year ended September last year and has partnered with a number of luxury brands such as Harvey Nichols, ZIMMERMANN, TOM FORD and others.
How is Delta Global seizing this growth opportunity? How to design packaging that is both luxurious and environmentally friendly? Robert Lockyer, Founder and Chief Client Officer of Delta Global, was interviewed by Bloomberg Businessweek/Chinese Edition, to introduce the company's history and business strategy. – Young Huang
How have you observed the luxury packaging market change since founding Delta Global in 2007?
In recent years, the company's core concepts of luxury design, sustainability, online shopping and innovation have provided innovative environmentally friendly packaging designs to reduce excess packaging in response to customer needs. But when I started the company in 2007, the concept of sustainability was not in the air, and the industry was not taking eco-friendly packaging seriously. But in the next 16 years, the issue of global warming and sustainable development became increasingly important, and the industry began to pay attention to this issue, which until two or three years ago, it became an unavoidable agenda for the industry. We are conducting a survey of the packaging market in Asia Pacific, which has found that brand sustainability influences consumer willingness and is a driving force behind the development of eco-friendly packaging. Today, everything we do is inextricably linked to sustainability.
What are the difficulties in designing eco-friendly packaging that reflects the value of a luxury brand?
We need to understand how packaging design meets the emotional needs of consumers, while embodying brand values and conveying information and stories to consumers. Therefore, we initially started from the purchase of luxury goods, substituted the perspective of consumers, and experienced the entire shopping process; Compare different packaging designs on the market, understand their design concepts, and then try to prototype packaging. Finally, our packaging uses a variety of environmentally friendly materials, such as paper and cardboard made of FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified wood, plant fibre ribbon made from eucalyptus sap, and no extra paper layers. The entire box is foldable, with a QR code printed inside the box, ribbons and magnets that can be removed separately (the new version of the V3 packaging will have a magnet-free design), all parts can be recycled, and customers can return the box to the store for design, environmental protection and user experience. This is the result of our continuous product development.
What are your advantages over other market competitors?
Delta Global is more focused on product design and innovation than other packaging suppliers, with 23% of the company's employees engaged in packaging design, in order to provide customers with tailor-made beautiful packaging and integrated production services in a short period of time. In addition, Delta Global Intelligence, an AI-driven supply chain management platform, can collaborate with customers to analyse and forecast product inventory and supply and demand data in different regions, remind customers to adjust logistics in a timely manner, save additional costs caused by wrong decisions, and ensure that the right quantity of goods is supplied at the right time. This supply chain management platform is unusual for a packaging company, but we believe that investing in a technology collaboration for business decisions is more critical and advantageous than producing packaging.
What opportunities do you see for Delta Global's future development as it expands from Hong Kong to Chinese mainland, South East Asia and Australia?
According to each of the research reports, Asia Pacific has the world's fastest-growing retail market, far ahead of the US and Europe. In our view, this growth trend implies a huge potential for the development of the eco-friendly packaging market. Compared to pre-pandemic levels, our customer base in Asia and Australia has grown, and these luxury brands are under pressure to be sustainable and share our commitment to eco-friendly packaging. The survey we are conducting shows that consumer awareness of sustainability issues is growing rapidly in the region, giving us more confidence to expand our business. Our Hong Kong office was established in 2017 and will be expanded in the future to accommodate future growth needs.