Wednesday, 1 April 2009

"Wedgwood legacy is under threat"

Letter to the Financial Times Published online : April 1 2009 03:00 Last updated: April 1 2009 03:00

From Mr Josiah Francis Wedgwood.

Sir, KPS Capital Partners' plan to transfer the production of Wedgwood
china to factories in Indonesia threatens to destroy the tradition and
branding of a 250-year-old company, as well as an English Midlands
community ("Waterford's new owner to accelerate shift overseas", March
27). Even as an economic matter, it will work only if the craft skills
are available abroad among poorly paid workers, and if American
consumers are willing to accept deluxe English china that is marked
"Made in Indonesia".

The use of a "Wedgwood – England" trademark may disguise the new
source of production for sales in the UK and Europe. But for sales in
the US, source of origin is more stringently regulated, and each plate
will have to admit on its verso that it was "Made in Indonesia". The
first Josiah never travelled to Asia, and neither will his company's

Josiah Francis Wedgwood,
Potomac, MD, US

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2009

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