Funzee starts Adult Onesie Manufacture in Europe

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Funzee, the leading online retailer of adult onesies has begun production of a new style in Europe for the first time and may look for a production partner in the USA.

Funzee, the leading online retailer of adult onesies has begun production in Europe for the first time. A new onesie design is being manufactured in facilities near Guimaraes in North Portugal. Funzee started designing and selling adult onesies back in 2008 and now sell extensively in Europe and USA. Until now they have used suppliers in the developing world such as India, Sri Lanka and China. Mark Heselgrave, director at Funzee, explained, “We have always been a low volume manufacturer and quality and reliability are more important to us than chasing the lowest cost.” He described how Funzee had mixed experiences in India but found good production partners in China. However Funzee’s main reason for looking to manufacture closer to their main markets is to reduce the time from initial design to having inventory ready to sell.

There has been much talk lately of “re-shoring”, bringing production back to developed countries as wage rates and costs generally are rising in China. But Funzee are clear this is not about costs. When making garments to your own design, lead times are long as the fabric has to be approved and produced before cutting and sewing can start. You then have to fit into the factory’s production schedule and, once completed, the goods have to be transported to warehouses in Europe and USA. So when Funzee were contacted by a new potential supplier in Portugal they were interested to explore how they work and whether they could reduce those lead times. After initial meetings, Funzee decided to try out the facilities by making their new Zooland design in Portugal. This is a 100% cotton design of penguin print on pale blue, a tribute to Ben Stiller in the film Zoolander.

From their experience to date, Funzee are happy with the quality and professionalism of all involved. It turns out that overall costs are not much higher than professional manufacturing in China but delivery to UK or Germany takes a couple of days by road instead of six weeks by sea. A spokesman for their Portuguese partner said “The area around Guimaraes has a long history of clothing and shoe manufacture so there is a skilled workforce available.”

As always, Funzee say they will monitor sales, returns and customer feedback but assuming that customers are happy with the quality of the product they expect to be moving more of their production to Portugal in the future. When asked about producing in the USA, Heselgrave said they keep an open mind. They would like to find a small, high quality supplier at a sensible price to partner with them as the USA is currently Funzee’s best market.

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mark heselgrave

Meghan Ferrin
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