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HKD’s $35 mn investment to boost tent manufacturing in Bangladesh

South Korean company HKD International Limited is the largest tent manufacturer in the world. HKD Bangladesh Limited—located in Chittagong—is going to establish tents, tent accessories, camping furniture and camping equipment manufacturing industry in the Bepza Economic Zone.

It will invest $35.03 million where 6,650 Bangladeshi nationals will get employment opportunities, according to a recent press release by the Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (Bepza).

Figure: HKD Bangladesh Limited is going to establish tents, tent accessories, camping furniture and camping equipment manufacturing industry in the Bepza Economic Zone. Courtesy: HKD Bangladesh Limited

Ali Reza Mazid, member (Investment Promotion) of Bepza, and Chul Hee Kim, chief operating officer (COO) of HKD Bangladesh Limited, signed an agreement on behalf of their respective organizations on 26 May at the Bepza Complex in Dhaka.

Bepza Executive Chairman Major General Abul Kalam Mohammad Ziaur Rahman was present at the agreement signing ceremony.

The company will produce annually 18.8 million pcs of tents, backpacks, bags, steel poles, fiber glass poles, travelers’ bags, gazebos, screen houses, cots, pet carriers, camping furniture, chair, tables, float tube bag, wagons, tarp, trolley, purse, steel wire, walking stick, steel accessories, steel ferrule, steel peg, O-ring, D-ring, steel trips, revert, screw, washer, steel bracket, nut with washer, tent accessory, cotton blinder, wallet/purse, bag accessory and sleeping bag.

HKD is a fully foreign owned company that started its operation in 1990 in Chattogram Export Processing Zone. HKD Bangladesh Limited would be the 5th venture of HKD Group with Bepza.

The group has four operational enterprises in Chattogram and Karnaphuli export processing zones which invested about $100 million. These four enterprises are producing tents, camping equipment and readymade garments. Around 10,000 Bangladeshi nationals are working in those factories.

Mentionable, including HKD Bangladesh Limited, Bepza approved a total of eight companies to set up industries in the Bepza Economic Zone.

The proposed investment of the other seven companies which have already signed the lease agreement is $120.11 million where 35,000 Bangladeshis are working.

Among others, Member (Engineering) Mohammad Faruque Alam, Member (Finance) Nafisa Banu, Executive Director (Public Relations) Nazma Binte Alamgir, Executive Director (Investment Promotion) Md Tanvir Hossain, Executive Director (Enterprise Services) Md Khorshid Alam and Project Director of Bepza EZ Md Hafizur Rahman were present during the signing ceremony.

Bangladesh poses immense opportunity to surge tent manufacturing and export share in the global market. In 2019, Bangladesh was the second biggest exporter of camping tent equipment ($205 million).

In the 2020-21 financial year, Bangladesh tent export earned $420.6 million. According to the newest figures from January, tent equipment exports are expected to exceed $513 million this year.

Tent entrepreneurs think that there is big prospect for Bangladesh to increase share in the world market. Tent manufacturers think that in the next few years, Bangladesh’s tent equipment export position will grow significantly.

According to BEPZA sources, 14 tent companies are currently in production in Chittagong and Karnafuli EPZs. In addition, another is under implementation. EPZ’s leading tent exporters include HKD Group, Campbell Global, Campex (BD), Eusebio Sporting (BD), Jessinha Outdoor and others.

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