The webinar will take place at 11 am UK time on Tuesday, March 24, 2020.All those wishing to join the webinar must pre-register their attendance via this link: https://jewelleryoutlook.com/?wswebinars=outlook-with-helen-dimmick&page=register
Helen, you are planning the first of a series of webinars. What will the topics be?My webinars will be on diamonds, jewellery, selling jewellery and supporting jewellery businesses, most especially the independent retailers, but may extend to any other relevant industry sector. My talks will have global relevance and are open to trade participants from around the world.Whatever my skills and experience are, I want to share my expertise at this time and we hope to create a collective online community of support.The seminars will show that jewellers are not alone – we will provide support to help them during this difficult time, firstly to stabilise and regroup. If possible, we will then look at going beyond survival to flourish and thrive, whatever the new retail landscape looks like.During this time I'll look at providing education for sales staff, for example, via digital initiatives; virtual methods of communication, and new routes to market for when the social distancing and further lockdown measures take place.The focus will be on how to upskill your team.We also hope that more senior jewellery industry specialists will come on board and share their expertise by giving webinars too. We will also work alongside other organisations providing similar resources.Feedback and questions will be by far the most important element. Listeners need to tell us what advice and resources they need. This platform will be very interactive.
What messages does the jewellery industry need to give out to consumers?Understanding the importance of gemstones and jewellery. Jewellery plays a significant role in the representation of humanity.Since the dawn of time man has adorned himself for status, protection, symbolism and reassurance.Still today the most significant milestones in our lives are represented by the giving and receiving of pieces of jewellery.So too is the everyday message of love and sentiment.This will therefore take on an enhanced meaning and importance during and after the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.For example, working in a jewellery retailer in Bond Street just after the 9/11 attacks, I was surprised by the significant jump in sales in the months that followed.People started to “live for the moment” more and wanted to make important gestures to their nearest and dearest.Our state-backed UK health system, the NHS (National Health Service), and other front-line services are playing a significant role at this time, but we too have a part to play -- never will the giving and receiving of jewellery be more relevantThe word, meaning and embodiment of “precious” will take on enhanced significance.How to tell this story and the method by which it is communicated will be key…
When the crisis eventually ends, do you foresee pent-up global demand re-emerging for jewellery? Who will be the winners and losers?Given the situation above, then yes, but I would anticipate demand will increase at a time when the supply channels will be challenged.This will determine an interesting time in marketing forces and the associated costs.The winners will be those in the industry who hold their nerve, listen, learn, adapt, change, think out of the box and work with greater collaboration and understanding.Liquidating assets and stock, increasing stock turn, sourcing new routes to market, will be essential in the short to medium term.Longer term though it may be survival of the fittest. I anticipate an increased demand for greater authenticity will also subsequently emerge.The individual retailer needs to redefine and reshape his or her own identity.The trusting relationship the individual independent retailer has with clients, and the representation of their own brand (online and in store) as opposed to the brands they sell, will be paramount.Supporting and resourcing this change will be crucial.
JCK Las Vegas postponed due to coronavirus concernsLAS VEGAS, March 18, 2020 – JCK Las Vegas, one of the world’s leading jewellery trade fairs which was due to take place from June 2-5, 2020, will be postponed until later in the year due to concerns over coronavirus, organisers said.“After careful consideration and comprehensive discussions, we have decided that the JCK & Luxury shows will be postponed to later in the year due to the growing concerns over public health and safety and the escalation of COVID-19,” a press statement from JCK Las Vegas said.“As soon as we work out the details for a new date in 2020 for JCK & Luxury, we will immediately share them with all of you. We expect to be able to do so shortly.”
Andre Michael working closely with customers to overcome challenges created by coronavirusLONDON, March 18, 2020 - Hatton Garden-based diamond jewellery supplier Andre Michael is working closely with its customers to combat the challenges created by coronavirus and is open to delaying deliveries to reflect effects on trade.“Our main focus is the safety and wellbeing of all members of our community, our staff and customers. We are looking after our team, making sure they do not visit customers unnecessarily. We know our customers are in some distress, and we are speaking to them regularly. We will work together in order to smooth out any problems in the coming weeks,” said Andre Michael, a member of the UK’s National Association of Jewellers (NAJ) and a supplier to the Company of Master Jewellers (CMJ).“Our customers are equally playing fair, and are working well with us. Customers are not cancelling orders but are working with us to delay delivery of some orders. We are acting with respect, responsibility and resilience. We are being positive, compassionate and supportive.”
NAJ urges UK government to support jewellery industryLONDON, March 17, 2020 – The National Association of Jewellers (NAJ) has sent an open letter to Prime Minister Boris Johnson calling for support for the UK jewellery industry due to the coronavirus pandemic.In the letter signed by Simon Forrester, NAJ Chief Executive, the Association underlines that liquidity issues could greatly affect Britain's jewellery businesses.The letter appeals to the government to consider support in cancelling business rates until the end of 2020, and to work with the tax authorities (HMRC) to create payment plans for deferring pay-as-you-earn tax (PAYE), VAT and corporation tax.It also urges the government to support banks to provide low-interest loans and extend credit terms as well as support the wages of those made redundant, or offer a universal basic income until the crisis is over.Furthermore, the letter calls for incentives to support UK businesses in driving consumers back to the High Street.Forrester said, "Urgent action from our government can make a difference to the jewellery industry. We are doing what we can to support each other but at this stage direct and pressing leadership is crucial. We now await consultation alongside other representatives of high street businesses on the decisions that will for a number mean their survival."NAJ continues to update its members and supporters via regular updates.The letter in full is published below:Rt Hon Boris Johnson MP Prime Minister10 Downing Street London SW1A 2AA17th March 2020Dear Prime MinisterUK Jewellery Industry in Crisis, urgent action requiredThe UK jewellery industry is already on its knees following significant economic challenges in recent years. Thousands of jobs are now at risk as the High street faces the greatest challenge in decades.We need clarity to support Britain’s jewellery businesses. Your clear financial commitment and support, direct advice and guidance, reassurance and empathy are vital at this time.Retail Jewellery businesses are a lynchpin of the UK high street, many of whom have been present for generations. But significant liquidity issues for retailers and their supply chain mean these businesses are finding it increasingly difficult to operate, thus impacting on one of the UK’s greatest creative industries, jewellery design and manufacture.Some retail and hospitality businesses are expecting to be able to claim on their insurances should you declare the High Street off limits. However, many more do not have business continuity insurance that covers them, and will likely fail as a result. We implore you to consider those businesses, and offer them support as part of a package to include:
- Cancellation of business rates until the end of 2020
- Work with HMRC to create payment plans for deferring PAYE, VAT and corporation tax until we are in a better position
- Support banks to provide low-interest loans and extend credit lines on favourable terms to UK business
- Support the wages of those made redundant, or offer a universal basic income until the crisis is over
- Provide incentives to support UK businesses, driving consumers back to the High Street.
De Beers Group Industry Services shortlisted for ‘Service Supplier of the Year’ at UK Jewellery Awards 2020March 13, 2020 - De Beers Group Industry Services has been shortlisted for a prestigious accolade in the United Kingdom’s most important trade-only awards, the UK Jewellery Awards.Numerous developments over the last year have led to this recognition, including reinvigorated support for retailers, diamond suppliers and industry groups across the UK, as well as collaborations with leading trade events such as International Jewellery London (IJL).De Beers Group Industry Services has focused on bolstering customer service in the UK market, specifically across after care sales, instrumentation troubleshooting and retail education.These services have been taken in-house, allowing De Beers Group Industry Services to stay closely connected to relevant customers, suppliers and retailers.The introduction of the award-winning SYNTHdetect XL has contributed to De Beers Group Industry Services’ position on the UK Jewellery Awards shortlist.This piece of technology allows retailers and suppliers to screen multiple finished jewellery pieces and larger single jewellery items for synthetic diamonds. As part of its service, De Beers Group Industry Services offers retailer-facing training courses and in-house educational initiatives to strengthen diamond knowledge, sales techniques and increase understanding of laboratory-grown diamonds and diamonds across the trade.In addition, its enhanced marketing to B2B press, in addition to consumer-facing events with the likes of Christie’s in London, have served to educate the jewellery buying public, as well as designers, sales associates and retail bosses, on the art of diamond grading.For more information, please visit www.debeersgroupservices.com.
Istanbul Jewelry Show postponedISTANBUL, March 11, 2020 – The Istanbul Jewelry Show, which was due to take place from March 19-22, has been postponed due to concerns over coronavirus, organisers said.“In light of the recent global developments around the COVID-19 virus, our top priority is the health and safety of everyone involved in the Istanbul Jewelry Show; our employees, partners, customers and exhibitors,” the Istanbul Jewelry Show team said.“After careful consultation with industry stakeholders, and upon the official decision of the Republic of Turkey Ministry of Trade on 11 March 2020 regarding the postponement of international organisations, the event will now take place on 18-21 June 2020.”
First set of speakers published for NAJ Summit 2020
March 2020 - The National Association of Jewellers (NAJ) has revealed the first selection of speakers presenting at Valuer, Supplier and Designer events taking place at the NAJ Summit, and also announced the theme for the Retail Jewellers’ Congress, also part of the Summit.Taking place from Saturday 20th to Monday 22nd June at Northampton’s Staverton Park Estate, The Summit is home to the popular Retail Jewellers' Congress (hosted by the JET Business Network), long standing 3-day Valuers' Conference (hosted by the Insititute of Registered Valuers), SecurityWise, Better Business and Created in the UK seminars. A Valuers' Dinner takes place on the Saturday evening and a Gala dinner for all attendees takes place on the Sunday evening.From industry trends to wellbeing at work, data security to being wowed with mourning jewellery. The Summit features a broad range of presentations, workshops, case studies and networking opportunities, with the major benefit being the ability to move freely from one event to the other, enabling you set your own programme.Harriet Kelsall, NAJ Chair who will be attending the event said:“The Summit will reflect the range of communities that make up this wonderful industry to both learn from one another and network together. The NAJ membership is made up of Retailers, Valuers, Designers, Manufacturers and Suppliers, all of which play a crucial role in making our industry fit for the future, and we’ve found time and time again when we get together, good things happen.”The Valuers’ ConferenceThe Valuers’ Conference, hosted by the IRV, will take place over all three days and include an international speaker line up including Hayden Peters, Cidgem Lule and Richard Drucker. Hayden Peters is a Jewellery Historian, Lecturer and Experience Designer. Hayden’s talk takes the same name as the website he founded, The Art of Mourning; a teaching platform to share knowledge and educate about this important part of history between the years of 1517- 1920. The award-winning mineralogist and gemologist Cigdem Lule will be giving a workshop on Cultured Pearl Grading and Diamonds. Based on her scientific background, gem trade and market experience in Turkey, United Kingdom and the United States, delegates can expect an insightful and engaging experience from Cigdem. Richard Drucker, Director of Gemguide, has been active in the jewellery industry for over 35 years and will be sharing his wisdom during his talk ‘Pricing coloured gemstones’.From UK shores and sharing his insight on jewellery and auction houses will be Richard Winterton, Director of Richard Winterton Auctioneers. Dr Maria MacLennan, Lecturer at Edinburgh College of Art and Academic Research Lead for the Police Scotland is also joining the event to introduce us to the experimental field of forensic jewellery.Doing Better Business?Starting on the Sunday are the series of Better Business seminars. The idea behind Better Business is to support you, your business and your employees become aware of new ideas and actions to do 'better business'. Four themes will span two days, covering People and Planning, Sales and Marketing, Product and Procurement and Money and Operations. Opening speaker Marion Wilson, industry consultant will dive into consumer, retailer and trade insight to give attendees a welcome view of the current jewellery market.On Sunday's People and Planning session will be Cheryl Thallon, a leading name in ethical nutrition and beauty who will talk about how she incentivises and retains employees and teams across her wholesale and retail businesses. Also appealing to Operations and Store Managers is Rebecca Day’s talk on workplace wellbeing; mental, physical and cultural. Not to be missed! Apprenticeships are changing the face of entry into the workplace for many, and Marie Garnett, NAJ’s Head of Education will also feature to bring attendees up to speed on what is possible with Modern Apprenticeships.In parallel, the Better Business Sales and Marketing session is aimed principally at Suppliers and Designers and will kick off with the William Agency’s Sarah Jordan showcasing the art of storytelling in PR. Andrew Martyniuk and Rachael Taylor, founders of the popular boutique jewellery show The Jewellery Cut Live will also make a presentation titled ‘Long live events! How to get the most out of trade, networking and VIP events’ calling upon their experience as successful event organisers. Gordon Glenister, Chief Executive of the Branded Content Marketing Association (BCMA) will be speaking about the fastest growing advertising medium in the world: influencer marketing, in his talk ‘Influencers and brand promotion in luxury industries.’Taking place on Monday 22nd June, will be the Product and Procurement theme for Better Business, aimed at those in senior Supplier or Designer roles. David Brough, founder of Jewellery Outlook will be hosting a panel session with NAJ Chair and Founder of Harriet Kelsall Bespoke Jewellery, Philip Newman, Editor of Metals Focus Magazine, the publication for one of the world’s leading precious metals consultancies and finally, Jayant Raniga, owner of London retailer PureJewels.Money and Operations will complete this triad of sessions for Better Business also taking place on Monday 22nd June, with speakers to be announced very soon.Paola De Luca, co-founder and creative director of TRENDVISION Jewellery + Forecasting and founder of The Futurist Ltd will be speaking in the 'Creativity in the UK' seminar taking place on Sunday 21st June, along with a selection of UK designers and manufacturers. Paola leads design projects; educational programmes for buyers, government organisations; brands and manufacturers; she coordinates think tanks and market trends-focused projects. Paola’s session aims to advise those creating jewellery in the UK to understand likely trends from 2021 onwards. This will be supported by Vicenzaoro.
The NAJ will soon unveil speakers for the Retail Jewellers’ Congress, under the theme ‘Grow your people, Grow your business’. Delivered through a tried and tested format of insightful and relevant keynote speakers, supported by knowledge sharing in the room. Congress is the opportunity to experience the value and community the JET Business Network delivers year after year.The speaker line up will constantly be updated on the NAJ website (naj.co.uk/summit), where bookings are also being processed.About the NAJThe National Association of Jewellers is the trade body representing all sections of the UK jewellery industry. With over 130 years of history, and more than 2,000 members, we cover everything from bullion dealers to registered valuers, and all points in between. As an industry-leading education provider, we deliver internationally recognised qualifications, exciting short courses and bespoke business mentoring. The Association was formed in 2015 through the unification of the British Jewellers' Association (BJA) and National Association of Goldsmiths (NAG). The Institute of Registered Valuers is also part of the NAJ family, comprised of around 150 professional valuers with formal qualifications and substantial experience. Every NAJ member is required to abide by the NAJ's Code of Conduct - based on honesty, integrity and professionalism. Members proudly display the NAJ's Grant of Arms to signify commitment.
Lita and Mike Asscher take Royal Asscher forward after retirement of Edward AsscherAMSTERDAM, March 3, 2020 – Royal Asscher Diamond Company announced that Edward Asscher, the firm’s President, retired after 50 years working within the family diamond company. Edward’s daughter Lita Asscher and son Mike Asscher will serve as the firm’s co-presidents.Edward Asscher joined the family business in 1970 after completing his academic studies. He apprenticed with his father and uncle, working alongside some of the finest diamond craftsmen in the industry.Ten years later, he stepped into his father’s shoes as company president. During 36 years, he worked harmoniously with his brother Joop, who died in 2006.Upon taking the company’s helm, Edward expanded Royal Asscher’s reach in the international market, creating a presence and developing strategic partnerships on all continents.With Edward’s son Mike and daughter Lita, the family’s sixth generation, Royal Asscher began to focus on the manufacturing of fancy cut diamonds, investing in innovative technology, which led to the patenting of four proprietary diamond cuts based on much adored and popular existing shapes. The Royal Asscher Cut has achieved worldwide fame.Edward enjoyed an illustrious career outside of the family business. As a passionate campaigner for an ethical responsible diamond industry that respects human and environmental rights, he has held board positions across numerous charities and industry bodies.He served as president of the World Diamond Council (WDC) from 2014 to 2016 and will begin another two-year term in June of this year.As an NGO, the WDC represents the complete diamond supply pipeline, from mining to retail, in the Kimberley Process (KP).With Asscher’s focus on human rights, he will promote further changes in the global diamond supply chain.Edward Asscher’s other achievements include:
- Past president of the International Diamond Manufacturers Association (IDMA)
- Past President of the International Diamond Council.
- Past President of the Liberal Party in Amsterdam. He served as a Senator for the Liberal Party in the Dutch parliament from 2007 to 2011.
- He received a knighthood for his social and ethical work and was consequently named an Officer in the Order of Oranje-Nassau.
Baselworld postponed to January 2021For health safety reasons and in accordance with the precautionary principle issued today by the Swiss authorities, Baselworld announces that it has taken the decision to postpone the show.BASEL, February 28, 2020 - For health safety reasons and in accordance with the precautionary principle following the bans of large-scale public and private events issued today by the Swiss federal and cantonal authorities, Baselworld announces that it has taken the decision to postpone the show to Thursday 28th January 2021 to Tuesday 2nd February 2021 (Press Day on Wednesday 27th January), due to concerns related to Covid-19.Baselworld, which was to be held from April 30th to May 5th, 2020, has taken this difficult decision in close consultation with its partners and the health authorities in charge, in whom Baselworld has full confidence for their expertise and recommendations for the benefit of exhibitors, visitors and collaborators. Following today’s official ban on large public gatherings which meant direct repercussions for the show, Baselworld had no other option than to make a decision as all preparations, in particular, construction in the halls and of the stands was scheduled to commence next week (start March).Michel Loris-Melikoff, Managing Director of Baselworld said: “We deeply regret having had to postpone the event as planned due to the coronavirus, in full consideration of the needs of the watch and jewellery industry to be able to benefit from the platform to develop their business. This decision has been all the more difficult in view of all the positives that have been achieved through listening and dialogue over the last few months, which resulted in new concepts and new solutions, that have attracted exhibitors to return and new ones to sign on. We registered encouraging growth in all sectors; watchmaking, jewellery, the gemstone and pearl trade, as well as in the technical branch.By postponing the show to January 2021, we have found a solution that enables the industry and all our customers to avoid losing a full year and at the same time reset their calendars for the beginning of the year, a period that is conductive to the presentation of their new products, new trends and order taking. This postponing will also allow Baselworld to continue developing and bringing new formats and solutions as well as improvements to the new concept we propose.”Bernd Stadlwieser, Group CEO of MCH said: "Within the process of the last weeks, I was very impressed by the involvement and trust of all our customers, partners, stakeholders and team, to pro-actively find the very best solution in the interests of the industries. By communicating intensively all together,we were able to work on different scenarios and to jointly decide on the very best one. I would like to thank everybody for their belief in and commitment to our platform.”Baselworld is not only the largest watch and jewellery event in the world, but is also destined to become the industry's largest global community platform, active all year round. In the coming weeks, we will be presenting a new digital service that is essential and useful to our entire community, and which we trust will meet the needs of the brands that have become even more important in these difficult and turbulent times.”
WEBINAR - Customer service key as jewellers regroup in response to coronavirus
By David BroughMarch 24, 2020 - Delivering exemplary customer service will be at the heart of rebuilding and rebranding jewellery businesses around the world in response to coronavirus, consultant Helen Dimmick said in a Jewellery Outlook webinar.Link to Webinar replay: Outlook with Helen DimmickAddressing ways for the jewellery industry to tackle the lockdown and move forward as businesses, Helen, a former retailer and former interim business leader of the Company of Master Jewellers (CMJ), a buying group, said delivering an authentic, demonstratively different, customer-focused identity was crucial.Helen’s message was part of a media-driven digital effort to support the global jewellery industry, with Jeweller Outlook in the vanguard.In the first of a series of webinars on Jewellery Outlook, this taster session celebrated the need to make bold business decisions in the face of adversity triggered by the pandemic.As jewellery stores are shuttered, how to positively utilise what feels like a new surplus of time, will be at the forefront of jewellers’ minds.“Isolation should not spell the end of innovation,” Helen said.“Virtual and digital technologies can facilitate collective communications and opportunities to ‘think out of the box’ in addressing the fundamental changes ahead, in preparation for a return of footfall to the high street amidst a potential burst of pent-up demand.”Helen addressed an audience of almost 200 people from the global jewellery trade in the Jewellery Outlook webinar, presenting a UK branding case study to encourage dialogue and innovation, ideas and hope, as many retailers switch immediately from an in-store to an online drive.“Crucially this is just the beginning. The platform has sought and received feedback to direct future content strategically,” Helen said.Jewellery Outlook will be staging more webinars on specific themes relating to the industry’s response to the coronavirus pandemic in the coming weeks from Helen and other industry leaders.Here is a link to the recorded webinar:https://jewelleryoutlook.com/?wswebinars=outlook-with-helen-dimmick