New horizons for Hudsons of England

A Staffordshire-based fine bone china pottery firm has kicked off the New Year with a major sales and finance boost.

Hudsons of England, manufacturer of the international brand Hudson and Middleton, has gained ‘significant investment’ from the Annvita English Tea Company. This investment will allow all operations to continue from its Grade II listed building in Stoke-on-Trent, with production and processes guaranteed to remain 100% made in England.

Hudsons of England managing director Mike Shirley said: “This is an excellent opportunity for us to build on our core values as a traditional fine bone china manufacturer.

“The decision to progress with the Annvita Group will bring new horizons, allowing us to expand our product line and export links over the next two years, combined with the licensing of new designs, shapes and much improved marketability.”

Hudsons is looking to expand by 100% over the next few years. Mr Shirley said, New facilities and equipment will be needed to handle increased production plans including a long anticipated enamel colour spray facility.

The opportunity arose last autumn following an 18-month client relationship with the Annvita English Tea Company, which has been operating since 1996. The company is the biggest English tea and afternoon tea chain in China and is the sole distributor for Whittards Tea in China.

“The profile of Hudsons of England is a perfect match for our ideals,” explained Ann Chiang, brand founder of Annvita. “It is important for us to secure 100% English products in our offering and now our tea shops can serve out of quality fine bone china, made in England.”

Annvita English Tea Company runs more than 40 teashops in China and plans to increase the number of outlets to 100 by 2015. Hudsons will become Annvita’s sole designer, manufacturer and exporter of fine bone china teaware and giftware.

Hudsons is exhibiting at London trade show Top Drawer this month on the ‘Ceramics, Made in Stoke on Trent’ stand. New branding and marketing collateral has been developed along with a soft launch on social media channels in 2013, and an imminent new website.

Formerly Hudson and Middleton, Hudsons of England is one of the few remaining fine bone china manufacturers based in the heart of the Potteries in Stoke-on-Trent, England. Founded in 1875, the company is one of the oldest potteries in England. It works with popular, contemporary artists such as Tottering by Gently, The Robert Fuller Gallery, Scott Inness and Madeleine Floyd. Its fine bone china is also used to decorate brands including The National Trust, English Heritage and Aga.

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