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Festive Season Sales Cause to Celebrate for Diamond Retailers
A buoyant festive season in India is making diamond jewellery retailers hope for a good 2011. Roli Gupta checks the mood in the market.
By: Diamond World News Service
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Jan 13 2011 5:11PM
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Reference: 5648  

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It’s the season to be merry, or so a popular carol goes. For the Indian market in general, and the Indian jewellery industry in particular, the merriment is already well underway. A cracker of a Diwali season has given the diamond jewellery industry good reason to celebrate. Here’s a look at what was hot and what was not, what worked and what didn’t for a cross-section of retailers.

A huge increase from last year

Like the typical nightmare that is forgotten as soon as the sun rises, the recession which had 2008 and most of 2009 in its vice is almost gone. They may be characteristically (and understandably) tight-lipped about the actual sales figures, but on an average, diamond jewellers reported a massive 40% increase in sales from last year.

ANKIT KIMTEE
ANKIT KIMTEE
Says Ankit Kimtee, Director, Interstar Gems, Indore, “The consumer’s buying capacity in terms of volumes has definitely increased...so it does look like the recession is gone.” There is also a change in the buyer profile. Vijay Jain, CEO, Orra says, “Though we did not experience a sharp drop during the recession, there is a marked increase in the demand for diamond jewellery with younger buyers walking into the stores to purchase diamond jewellery.”

There is good reason why the customer is veering towards diamond jewellery...Mehul Choksi - Chairman & CEO, Gitanjali Group clarifies “The demand for jewellery in general increased because the festive season took place against the backdrop of a strong economic revival compared to the fears of a slowdown which dominated in the previous two years. Diamond jewellery segment did well for two reasons – the modern Indian consumer is showing a marked preference for well designed jewellery with a contemporary look, and opting for diamonds which are popular across the globe. The high price of gold has also made diamond jewellery (with lower total gold weight) a more attractive option.”

As Vinod Hayagriv, Managing Director, CKC, Bangalore explains, “The market is doing fairly well. The business this year was constant and of good quality. While the large impulse buys of 2007-2008 are missing, there is a healthy cash flow. This is definitely not a time for gimmicks, stability is the key word.”

Anil Talwar, Partner, Talwarsons Jewellers, Chandigarh offers yet another perspective...” The percentage growth in diamonds is more than that in gold. The prime reason is that diamond jewellery design is getting more and more innovative. More than 90% of the designs available are now very elite and diverse. The customer also looks for exclusivity.”

Vishal Doshi, Group Executive Director, Shrenuj and Company Ltd, Mumbai says, “The response has been overwhelming. Diamonds set in platinum, diamonds set in gold – both did exceedingly well.”

In fact, jewellers unanimously agree that while the mid range jewellery segment did well, the customer was truly out in droves buying high end jewellery with several jewellery sets worth more than 25 lakhs being hot sellers.

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