A chat with Marine Antikainen, Chief of Staff, on how Galton Voysey helps brand founders with the manufacturing process.
Marine: Did you – did you take that?
Kat: It’s recording so…
Kat: Hi, so today I’m sat here with Marine, our Chief of Staff, and I thought I would try to learn a bit more about the – um – the manufacturing process. So, I think something that’s really interesting is that we help the banks that we work with manufacturing some of the products if they come to us with an idea and then we can go and execute on that or help them to do that. So what’s the process like? How do we even choose manufacturers – how do we contact them? I wouldn’t even know where to go and find out a factory’s phone number, for example.
Marine: Yeah, like, so it really depends what wee are trying to achieve – for example – for example, like if we have a French brand and we wanted to make a perfume. So for me it was very obvious that we would – that we are going to go for a French manufacturer, and if possible based in Grasse, that is like a city that has a very long history –
Kat: In grass?
Marine: Yeah –
Kat: Oh, like, that’s the name of the city *laughter*; sorry – I thought you were talking about, like, a field or something.
Marine: No! Like Grasse is a very famous city that is – uh – very renowned for the perfume industry and they even have the international perfume museum there so I think it was very important for us to be based off there.
Marine: But then, of course, there are different type of products and we are doing quite a few different types of products in China for the product quality-wise. There is this famous video of Tim Cook, the CEO of Apple, that he says that if the iPhones are made in China, it’s not because of the fact that the price are cheaper, but it’s just that China is so good at making this quality phone.
Kat: Right. And we also help brands with suppliers, like, worldwide. Like you mentioned France and China – and also, like, Thailand has some great suppliers and other countries as well, right?
Marine: Yes, we also have manufacturing in Vietnam. At the moment we are looking for manufacturers in Portugal and Italy for leather goods.
Kat: Mmhm. So how do you make, like, a choice? Do you sit down with the brands and try to understand from their brand identity, or is it like a cost-focus? Like what’s right? Or is it, like, maybe very different per brand?
Marine: Yeah – I think it’s quite different according to each brand, like what we’re looking for. But what is very important for us, is like, to make an audit of all the factories we are working with. We are doing a compliance audit, we are making sure that they are respecting all the international regulations concerning the workers. This is very important for us. And also, what they can source, and the type of material.
Kat: So, I know a lot of the time, a founder will have – like a good idea, and so what does Galton Voysey help them do?
Marine: Yeah, so, what we help them do is to put together a mood board; what is your brand about, what is your brand not about? And once we have crystalized that then we can work on the color tone. So it depends – sometime the founder of the brand has a clear idea of what we’re going to do and we’re helping them out to find a supply chain. Or other times, they have a supply chain, but they don’t really know what the brand is about.
Kat: Right, right.
Marine: So it’s really by a case-by-case basis.
Kat: Right, some people are like, great designers and want to focus on the design aspect, so we help them with like, all the other admin, right? And so some people are the opposite – they have relationships with the people they might want to work with, and so we help them flesh out what the stories they want to tell are.
Marine: Yeah, you are summarising it very well.
Kat: So that’s really interesting – thank you today for joining the video.
Marine: Thanks to you!
Marine: I’m googling Grasse, because then you confused me.
Kat: *laughter* We can do it again!