IJL 2009 records highest ever attendance
|LONDON, September 16, 2009 – International Jewellery London (IJL) received the highest number of visitors in its 53-year history, with visitors and exhibitors reporting consistently positive attitudes to the show.|
As the event closed, the number of visitors was 9,304 (unaudited), a 7% increase over 2008.
Event manager Syreeta Tranfield said, “2009 has been a tough year that ended with an excellent result and we are thrilled to record the highest ever attendance figure.”
She added, “I spoke to so many people who had noted the upbeat attitude at the event and this is very encouraging in the current climate. Following such a successful show, IJL 2009 remains unrivalled as the UK’s flagship jewellery industry event.”
Syreeta said the overwhelming optimism seen at the show indicates more positive times ahead.
“This is a very timely green shoot for the jewellery business ahead of the Christmas period,” she said.
VIP Diamond Club
IJL launched a VIP Diamond Club for the 2009 show.
Nominated by the IJL Advisory Board, 172 top buyers and retailers from leading retail jewellers throughout the UK attended the event as members of this new prestigious club.
There were many benefits, including the purpose built Diamond Club Lounge, situated in the heart of the show.
KickStart was a new initiative from IJL, supported by the British Jewellers’ Association (BJA). This bursary scheme created a commercial launch pad for fledgling jewellery designers and gave retailers a chance to see some fresh and interesting new designs.
Participating designers were showcased in the Design Gallery.
Designer Alexandra Simpson found that being a KickStarter has opened doors for her in this early stage of her career.
“I’ve had a wonderful show with an incredible amount of interest from shops, galleries and leading museums – some from as far afield as Japan,” she said.
“I have had some orders and sales. I have enjoyed being a Kickstarter as I have learnt so much and I found all the help in the lead-up to the show particularly useful. I also like the concept of sharing a stand at the show”.
Editor’s Choice was launched this year to recognise leading jewellery designers and producers who are setting the latest consumer and fashion trends.
Jewellery and luxury journalist Claire Adler selected designers with innovative and cutting-edge new pieces and collections.
Kaja Gjedebo, CEO of Kaja Gjedebo, described the impact of being selected for the Editor’s Choice.
“I’ve had lots of interest which has resulted in a considerable number of orders and sales of my more expensive pieces,” Kaja said.
The Design Gallery at IJL is the place to see some of the very best British and international designers showcasing inspired, original and unique contemporary jewellery collections.
Retailers commented that the quality of the jewellery was “exceptional this year” and the Gallery had an “attractive look and feel”.
Designer Fei Liu said the show had been a success for him.
“It’s been a wonderful show for us and so much better than last year. Our expectations were not that high given the current economy but the quality of buyers has been excellent and we’ve taken some good orders,“ he said.
Sarah Ho, director of SHO Fine Jewellery, noticed the international reach of the show.
“Against all odds this year, this IJL has been the most successful for us,” she said.
“Our new collections have been really well received and we have opened up new accounts across the UK and even as far away as New Zealand.”
Bright Young Gems
IJL Bright Young Gems was a highlight feature at the show, located in the Design Gallery.
The showcase attracted interest and business leads from both exhibitors and visitors.
The QVC Bar in the Design Gallery and Pandora Bar on the Central Boulevard provided an opportunity for visitors to network with friends and colleagues, and added to the upbeat mood at the show.
Sponsor Pandora also reported excellent results.
Peter Andersen, managing director of Pandora UK, revealed that Pandora took a larger stand to show their commitment to the UK market and to IJL. “We had a great show with phenomenal sales,” Peter said.
Lesley Moore, business development director of IJL sponsor Chamilia, said, “Sponsorship of the IJL Registration has really worked for us.
“This is the second year we’ve exhibited and it’s been a fantastic success for us – so much so that we’ve tripled orders from new accounts.”
The seminars at IJL were extremely popular this year, and there were more seminars than ever.
Matthew Jeatt, director of trends forecasting agency Promostyl UK, said of the IJL seminar programme after his well-attended seminar on trends for Winter 2010/2011: "It’s good to see the seminar series expanding and covering ever more topics and featuring a wider variety of specialist speakers.”
He added, “In today's market it is even more important for companies and designers to be aware of the trends that are continually evolving all around us.
We all need to be more forward thinking, more creative, more generous, and work smarter in order to meet the customer's demands.”
Over 50 key industry figures attended the Great Debate, staged by the Birmingham Assay Office at IJL.
The event encouraged people to work in partnership to deliver an ethical jewellery supply chain. Michael Allchin, Chief Executive of The Birmingham Assay Office, said, “We had a fantastic turnout and that itself is a good sign.
“The objective of the Debate is to keep things moving and encourage more partnerships by introducing different people with different experiences.”
Dates for the 2010 show: September 5-8, 2010, Earls Court Two