BYFORD BRIEFS

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BYFORD BRIEFS

Postby y-fronts on Thu Jun 05, 2008 6:07 pm

THERE HAS been recent mention of briefs by a company called byford

i checked out their website and after clicking on stockists for the uk it said COMING SOON

HAS any one any idea if they are available anywhere here in the uk or is it still just asia
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Postby Worldwide on Fri Jun 06, 2008 6:55 am

As the only one who I think has recently mentioned Byford (that's them I'm wearing in my current avatar), I can tell you everything I know, but not if they are available in the UK.

They're probably my favourite undies currently.

They are marketed as 'Byford of London' everywhere I have seen them in Asia, but I have not seen them in the UK (well London really, since that's the only place I've been semi-regularly).

I have a vague memory of someone saying that Byford has a UK 'history', but then sold the name to an Asian outfit. I think Byford's head office is now in Hong Kong.

The sale story may or may not be true, as many Asian fashion manufacturers (including undies) pretend to have European origins (generally British, French, or Italian) by giving their lines anglo/euro names. I suspect it allows them to charge a premium for the perceived quality.

I first found Byford in Singapore, where they are in all the major department stores. I recently found them in large numbers in Kuala Lumpur. They now have a large range, from classic white briefs to trunks and bikini briefs. They're quite cheap, esp given the high quality - less than US$10 for two briefs or one pair of trunks.

The web site does list some US outlets, but I wonder if they only carry their socks or other non-underwear ranges (perhaps someone in the US can check) ? If they are 'coming soon' to the UK, it may be the same there.

The sizes I've seen are always 'Asian' in scale. eg XL is about a 34. I have both L and XL, which by the time I blow dry them are around 31-33. As you can see in my avatar (and gallery), they're roughly a mid-rise brief. The butt is not overly 'generous', consistent with the tight little Asian variant. :-)

They're very soft and quite stretchy, which is why they are so comfortable. They have traditionally had a classic look, with a single blue stripe. The newer range I have seen in KL and Thailand has a wider range of dark solid colour briefs, and stripes on the white briefs. I picked up a box with one pair with a red stripe, and one with a green stripe.

I can't recall seeing them last time I was in Hong Kong, but I'm sure they were there. They are also in some of the upmarket department stores in Bangkok, but about 50% more expensive than Singapore or Malaysia.
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Postby y-fronts on Fri Jun 06, 2008 9:19 am

thanks a lot for the information you have posted

i will keep a check on the website about the uk stockist--coming soon---and hopefully wherever that is going to be[probably london] they will stock the underwear

thanks again
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Postby BUMbriefs on Fri Jun 06, 2008 1:26 pm

It's available in Malaysia. I used to have few designs. It's nice and comfortable. But the design is a bit conservative.
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Postby Worldwide on Sat Jun 07, 2008 1:53 am

Perhaps email their UK office ...
DONALD BYFORD & SONS LTD.
31-32 Market Place, Newark-on-Trent, Nottinghamshire, NG24 1EG, England
peterc.duncan@donaldbyford.com

or the Hong Kong office:
info@donaldbyford.com

They also turn up on ebay from time to time, usually from Singapore or Malaysia.

Also found this:
From South China Morning Post, Jul 09, 2004

"Roly International buys 51pc stake in Byford
Roly International Holdings acquired 51 per cent of underwear firm Byford International for $51 million on Monday.
Singapore-listed Roly said it planned to push Byford products into new markets such as the United States and Canada and expand its product range.
Byford produces men's underwear and socks, and its sales are concentrated in Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong. Last year, net profit for the Growth Enterprise Market-listed firm was $8.07 million on revenue of $51.7 million.
Roly bought 102 million Byford shares, including more than 100 million from Byford chairman Chai Sing Hong and his sister Chai Sing Fai, an executive director, at 50 cents apiece."

http://www.scmp.com/portal/site/SCMP/me ... &s=Archive
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Postby Manchesterbriefs on Sat Jun 07, 2008 3:32 am

Worldwide, the SCMP's web archives have been subscriber-only for about ten years so unfortunately the link will be unreadable to the majority of us. I don't ever recall seeing Byford underwear when I lived in HK, but then maybe that's because I only ever wore underwear from China Prods or, occasionally, Giordano/Crocodile/Baleno and stores of that type. I guess Byford must be stocked at places like Wing On?

I look forward to seeing it arrive in UK, although I'd equally like to see someone brave enough to import my favorite Hings.
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Postby Worldwide on Sat Jun 07, 2008 11:44 pm

If Byford are in HK, I would think they might be in up-market dept stores like Sogo.
[Postscript: Just checked the store locations on the website http://www.donaldbyford.com.
It indeed lists Sogo and some other dept stores on both sides of the harbour.]

I'm no Asian underwear anthropologist, but my guess is that the Byford demographic is perhaps similar to that of Jockey - a conservative classic brief that exists somewhere between the cheapest "working man's" briefs and the more expensive designer briefs. Like Jockey, Byford also has a range of bikini briefs and other styles.

Interestingly, Jockey classic briefs are not big in Asia in my experience, unlike in the western world. So Byford may partly fill that gap in parts of Asia, with other local brands covering the cheaper end of the market. The type of classic briefs we're talking about are often ones that a boy grows up wearing, and never changes if he wants to stick with the classic style (obviously rarer these days). And those type of briefs are often country-specific brands with distinct characteristics - M&S, FTL, Hanes, Hings - plus Jockey in many other markets. So if you grow up in a local classic brief, and you continue wearing classic briefs, you probably don't change brands. So a Hong Kong boy probably sticks with Hings or similar, a Brit with M&S, an American with Hanes / FTL, and perhaps a Singapore boy with Byford ?

Those type of briefs don't seem to have crossed cultural boundaries very often or successfully, with the exception of the iconic Jockey. Classic brief wearers are a dying breed in many markets, having moved to other styles or to designer brands. That may not bode well for Byford in other markets, unless perhaps they're marketed as more of a premium brief, or more in terms of their other styles.
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