We hope you are enjoying this wonderful summer, and maybe some of you are out on a break. Hopefully you can re-group your energies and go head strong towards the next upcoming season. But first: coffee & diamonds! Some latest news of what is happening in our industry.
Tiffany & Co., which has stores in many cities around the globe, decided it will open some stores in India as well. They see the growing luxury market in India as an opportunity to grow even more. First they will open a store in Delhi, afterwards one in Mumbai. Such news can only be positively received; some still believe in a prosperous jewelry market!
De Beers has shown reports where their mining numbers went down. Less rough being pulled out of the earth. They point to challenges from within the industry, instead of challenges from outside (decline of sales). The trend, that started after the 2008 financial crisis, where retailers started to change their approach towards stock keeping, has been the main challenge. Retailers are buying less goods for stock, and keeping more goods on consignment, which puts stress on the midstream, who needs to stock-up. As a consequence they buy less rough, which in turn pushes the mining companies to mine less rough diamonds. So far so good, now we only need the official numbers where we see increased numbers of (retail)sales, and we are all set!
Unfortunately, in the US they have seen a drop of jewelry sales in over-the-counter retail shops. Other retail shops are doing better. It seems the American consumer is hesitant to spend on luxury goods. On the other hand the sales of watches has gone up...clearly the spending habits of consumers have been very volatile in the past...and shall probably remain like that in the future.
A merge has happened in the business of pre-owned jewelry. The companies Circa and Mondiamo have decided to join their forces to better tap into what they say is a "$1 trillion business of jewelry that is not worn, and the owners are willing to sell". Mondiamo is an online company, and Circa is an enterprise with 12 locations worldwide. By combining their forces they want to become the best global proposition for sellers of high-end jewelry and watches. One of the board members is also part owner of the gigantic online web shop Blue-Nile. Let's see where this will lead to...
Let's end with some great news! Citibank's Citi Retail Services has surveyed some 1000 people about online versus in-shop buying habits. It seems people still prefer to shop in-store. Wow, that's good! Let's bring in the numbers: 40% of jewelry bought in-store has been $1000+. The maximum amount spent in-store was about $2269 (versus online $1099). People like to inspect physically the rings before buying them. Also 2/3 of people who have bought jewelry did most (or all) of their buying in-store, while 12% did so (only) online. Many more figures were shown in favor of the shops versus online stores, so let's not get too much into details: the brick-and-mortar store is far from being neglected and abandoned!
With this positive note I would like to wish you all a nice second half of this wonderful summer. And as usual: we are here for all your inquiries!