Jewelex Group
Innovating Success

Jewelex Group Innovating Success

A company with a holistic approach, a clear vision and some innovative thinking, the Jewelex Group has emerged as one of the frontrunners amongst jewellery suppliers to the world and to India, finds Nilan Singh.

That do the Wright Brothers’ aircraft, the Model ‘T’ Ford, the Taj Mahal and the Eiffel Tower have to do with diamonds or jewellery? Or for that matter with a company manufacturing those products? Think a little harder, a little differently and you might find the answers. No? Then we’ll let the Jewelex Group itself provide the answers. As their innovative website explains, the aircraft symbolises man’s dream to fly; the Ford, a car for the masses made luxury accessible; the Taj is the greatest monument to love, a jewel above all others; and the Eiffel Tower a colossal tribute to technique. Put all these thoughts and qualities together and you have an amalgam of what makes for a cracking good company. But understand the lateral thinking that has produced the symbolism and you can appreciate what makes Jewelex stand apart. It is the vision, the ability to innovate, the propensity to allow the imagination to soar unfettered.

Jewelex traces its inception back to 1966. It became a DTC sightholder in 1973 and has been one since then. It is one of the few groups in the country today which straddles the gems and jewellery industry from rough to retail; and through sheer drive, innovation and passion for excellence has created a presence and name for itself. Though its operations span the diamond and jewellery worlds it is in the latter that it has earned for itself accolades and admiration. The Jewelex Group’s jewellery enterprise began as an export oriented one, and over a decade back, it was again one of leading companies to recognise the immense potential of the Indian market and set up a division entirely oriented to the manufacture of jewellery for the domestic market.

International Operations

For its export oriented products, Jewelex has three dedicated manufacturing units with a workforce of over 1100 persons. Its manufacturing is divided into _ ve divisions: Wax Set Division, Machine Set Division, Special Order Division, Platinum Division and Bridal Division. Over the years, the company has penetrated most established and emerging markets across the globe. Starting with the leading consumer market USA, Jewelex has clients in Europe, Australia, Middle East, Russia, South Africa and India as well.

The company also has a focused strategy towards these markets. “We started penetrating different markets in the world and have a strong foothold in each of them by now,” explains Ashish (Bobby) Kothari of Jewelex. “We are a well balanced company successfully covering all the major markets of the world. Jewelex has built and thrived on a strong platform to be able to serve each of the customers in each of the territories successfully ensuring that we accomplish our target of being amongst the top three suppliers of each customer.”

It is a focus which is not just cystal clear, but also relentless in its belief in value addition which has helped build the organisation as one of the top _ ve jewellery exporters from India. As Kothari explains, “It is very important for us to believe that we would be able to improve the customers’ business and take it to a different level - if not we choose not to take the business up at all.” There is also an acute awareness of the changes taking place in the distribution system all over the world. “Going forward our target is to focus mainly on retailers,” says Kothari.

Apart from the core values of a company, the basis of building a strong customer base is about having an excellent product both in terms of design and quality.

The Jewelex product development division has a dedicated team of 11 skilled personnel with professional designers. “We hire designers from renowned institutes and groom them to become the top designers of tomorrow,” says Kothari. “The design, model making and trial stage is all under one head to make sure the same passion is transformed through every stage of product development.”

We are a well balanced company successfully covering all the major markets of the world. Jewelex has built and thrived on a strong platform to be able to serve each of the customers in each of the territories successfully ensuring that we accomplish our target of being amongst the top three suppliers of each customer.

But the jewellery also needs to be in sync with the times, the trends and the nuances of each market that it caters to. “In order to get the perfect merchandise product it is necessary to have market exposure and understand the customer needs,” spells out Kothari, explaining the management’s approach. “Hence our designers are sent to jewellery shows around the world to garner exposure, and understanding.”

There is a great level of confidence in its product which is reflected in Kothari’s words when he says, “We focus on themes, concepts and concentrate on designing a collection rather than designing individual pieces.”

The sensitivity to markets and the concerns of the consumer have led the company, for example to produce the Brand Ecoura. “Keeping the current environmental concerns in mind we have recently launched the Eco Friendly Brand Ecoura in the US,” expounds Kothari. Explaining further, he says, “It is an amalgamation of two thoughts: Eco – inspired from nature, Aura – a feeling of love.” This brand features exquisite bridal designs elegantly created from renewed gold. “You get engaged, we plant a tree. Live a greener life, naturally!” is how the company sees it.

For the future, the company’s aspirations on the international front are to “Maintain the balance of business throughout the world – grow the business in USA and grow in smaller markets where we can be the key player in each of these markets,” says Kothari.

Domestic Front

In 2002, Jewelex started operations of its jewellery manufacturing arm for the Indian market. What started as a small factory with a limited capacity, quickly established itself, and has grown to two facilities with a workforce of 300. These have different teams for casted, high end, machine-set and hollow products. There are also dedicated divisions to handle different product lines.

But unlike many others who were also making a bid to cater to the Indian consumer and in the process throwing up a lot of “me-too” products, Jewelex once again distinguished itself by identifying a special niche and cultivating it with dedication. Today it is the foremost name in the field of machine set bangles and gent’s rings.

On the technical front, its specialisation is in two areas: the hollow technique and machine setting (of bangles and rings).

The special hollow technique achieves a bigger and bolder look with lower gold weight. “Very few companies have a proper technique to manufacture diamond studded rings with hollow technique,” says Kothari.

On the other hand, rings and bangles are manufactured using precision set technology which meets the highest international quality standards. “The entire product is manufactured by machines employing a tubing process,” explains Kothari. “We are one of the first companies to implement this technology in India.”

Little wonder that Jewelex has established a pan-India presence. “We have now evolved into a company which caters to all the four zones (North, South, East, West) of India through either the individual large retailers or the corporates,” says Kothari.

Keeping the current environmental concerns in mind we have recently launched the Eco Friendly Brand Ecoura in the US. It is an amalgamation of two thoughts: Eco – inspired from nature, Aura – a feeling of love

Elaborating on Jewelex’s approach to its product development in India, Kothari says, “India is a growing market. It is also a fairly new market for branded jewellery and so we promote the major collections in the form of brands by giving marketing support to the customers. We ensure that the brand is well maintained throughout by periodically rejuvenating the look and feel of the brand.” As in everything else, Jewelex has a clearcut strategy for its further growth within India. “We would like to retain our position as the best supplier of machined bangles, hollow gent’s jewellery and grow our business with more casted product offerings,” says Kothari. “Understanding our DNA of innovation these casted products would also be special either by design, setting or techniques. We see high end, very finely crafted jewellery and platinum jewellery as key growth areas of the company.”

Needless to say, Jewelex has been an award winner several times over. It has not only won The Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council’s Annual Awards in several years, but was also the recipient of the Bharatiya Udyog Ratna Award for the Year 2002-2003.

Underlying the product excellence, marketing savvy and spread and a successful operation is a strong foundation of values. The management strongly believes that “Jewelex is a company with a soul which has strong family values – living and breathing the ethical values at all stages of the hierarchy, while respecting everyone at all levels.”

This includes a special focus and effort on nurturing its workforce. “We make sure everyone in the Jewelex family grows, for which necessary training is given to the employees,” says Kothari.

With a holistic approach to all it does, it’s little wonder that Jewelex has today achieved not only all-round success, but also earned the deep respect of all concerned – whether its employees, customers, or the fraternity of the gems and jewellery world it inhabits.


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