Malaysian startup selling belts for travel and outdoor activities

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[Written in partnership with Nylon Belt, but the editorial team had full control over the content.]

Seasoned travelers are well aware of the difficulties encountered when it comes to planning a trip, and for this Melakan, the question of an everyday accessory has become a business idea.

Taking seat belts off at the airport has always been a problem for John, but when he made a trip to Russia once, that problem doubled as he had to remove his seatbelt in malls and even parks for some reason. of security.

“I went through at least 5 security checks a day, and it’s very inconvenient to have a metal belt,” John, founder of Nylon Belt, told Vulcan Post.

Of course, that wasn’t enough to stop him from wearing belts, but he wanted a better solution for his travels. So he turned to nylon belts.

For the more practical crowd

Before Nylon Belt, John ran a Facebook dropshipping business selling all kinds of products (mostly hardware), but it didn’t last long.

Facebook did not ban their business activity, but limited their maximum daily spending limit. This is a restriction encountered by non-US citizens when dropshipping on the site, making it a less lucrative option for people like John.

Seeing how unsustainable the dropshipping business was, John decided to turn to building an original brand, Nylon Belt, selling exactly what’s in the name – nylon belts – in 2017.

Nylon belts are versatile due to their durability, making them a practical benchmark for those who travel actively or engage in outdoor activities.

Practice on vanity / Image credit: Nylon belt

The material allows you to throw the belt in the wash when it gets dirty, and there are no hard holes you have to insert or remove the clasp in. As a frequent traveler, these belts were the answer to John’s problem.

They also have an advantage for those who are plus size, as the clasp can be tightened anywhere along the length of the belt due to the lack of drilled holes.

To clarify, nylon belts were by no means invented by John. A simple Google search can lead you to a variety of sellers on Shopee and Lazada who get their nylon belt stock from China.

John obtains the raw materials from China, but the assembly of the nylon belts is done in their warehouse in Melakan. This probably gives the team better control over the quality of the finished product, and they are also able to offer an unlimited warranty on the belts.

Their belts sell for between RM49.98 and RM64.98, prices much higher than what you can find on Shopee, where nylon belts can sell for just RM3.60, although the materials used and final quality may differ.

The team behind the brand / Image credit: Nylon belt

Focus on a foreign market

From the pictures alone, you can probably tell that nylon belts are not for vanity purposes, which is why the women’s section of the Nylon Belt website is lacking in designs.

The team is geared more towards men, but not quite in Malaysia. John clarified that most of their sales actually come from the United States, which has a higher demand for nylon belts.

In the United States there are already several brands producing nylon belts like Rogue Fitness and GRIP6. This puts the Nylon Belt team in direct competition with them, but the team is able to reduce its drawbacks through distribution centers.

They have centers in the United States, Australia, and Asia, which means that despite being headquartered in Melaka, they can still deliver the belts in a timely fashion to customers in remote areas, as long as the centers are stocked.

One of the trips that helped start the business / Image credit: Nylon belt

John revealed to Vulcan Post that to date, they have made over US $ 500,000 and are still making a decent profit. At one point in 2019, they were earning US $ 30,000 in income per day, but since the pandemic that number has declined.

This could be because pandemic closures have reduced the frequency of travel and outdoor activities, so potential customers still don’t see the purchase of a nylon belt as a necessity.

Nevertheless, the team is not discouraged. The next plan for the company is to expand further into the United States with an office and warehouse. While there is a lot of competition, the market may still be big enough for another player, and that’s what John hopes to capitalize on.

  • You can know more about nylon belt here.
  • You can read more about other Malaysian startups we’ve covered. here.

Image Credit Featured: John Tan, Founder of Nylon Belt


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