CMJ sales rise by 35 percent in 2014/15 to £153m in record breaking year
BIRMINGHAM, August 9, 2015 – The CMJ (Company of Master Jewellers) reported another record breaking year, with sales through the group rising to over £150million and gross profit up by 12% to £2.29million.
The CMJ’s chief executive Willie Hamilton said: “It is gratifying to see another year of top line growth and the underlying figures also bring renewed confidence for the future of CMJ”.
Speaking to the CMJ membership at the Group’s AGM in Birmingham on August 9th, CMJ Finance Director Andrew Hirshman reported that CMJ group sales rose from £113m in 2013/14 to just shy of £153m in 2014/15, representing a rise of 35%.
CMJ’s gross profit has risen to £2.29m, up by 12%, from £2.04m last year with expenditure and investment rising by 15.7% to £1.92m.
“We have managed to ensure that the CMJ is in its strongest financial position in its 35 year history and well positioned to take advantage of potential future growth opportunities. We are, without doubt, the strongest cooperative jewellery buying-group in the country and remain focused and motivated on ensuring that this is never challenged,” said Hirshman.
The Bridal jewellery segment, which includes both diamond and wedding ring suppliers, has contributed £12.8m this year to core CMJ sales, up from £10.7m in the previous year and £11.9m the year before that. This represents a rise of just under 20%, reversing last year’s fall of 10%.
“This does indeed demonstrate that we have begun to refocus back onto this critical side of our business. Brown and Newirth, Domino, Corona and Bass Premier have in particular shown good growth this year,” Hirshman reported.
Watch sales have continued their impressive rise within CMJ, with sales through the group up from £9.7m to £12.0m.
“It’s encouraging that all segments have reported growth from last year, not only due to the steady increase in our membership but also to the focus and performance of our membership as a whole,” Hirshman added.
The total number of members at the end of 2015 stood at 155, up from 144 at the same time last year, representing steady manageable growth.
“We continue to receive a steady stream of new applications, which are all considered in a structured and time lined process. It is our desire to continue with this growth strategy, which we firmly believe is the correct path to ensure our continued success,” said Hirshman.
Breaking down some of the figures, HIrshman added that “59% of CMJ members’ spend within the CMJ was ahead of spend year on year. “This is up from 57% last year and 52% two years ago. This is a very encouraging trend which highlights that the UK economy has without doubt, started to move out of recession and into growth. It also shows that our members are feeling more bullish about their businesses and their future.
“It is through this collective and the ability to network and share ideas between us that gives us the confidence to try new things within our business and learn from each other.”
“During the growth of every successful business there comes a point where courage is required to invest for the future and not anticipate immediate return on that investment. To speculate to accumulate, is the well-used phrase,” said Willie Hamilton, at the Group’s AGM.
“The CMJ has shown that courage with investment in ventures such as Facets PR, Trade Events, Business Conferences and most importantly with investment in the lifeblood of our industry, our colleagues within CMJ and our growing and prospering membership of retailers and suppliers, is a formula that is working.”
“CMJ will continue to speculate to accumulate in 2015 but still remain focused on the core requirements of providing professional, ethical, collective support that can enable our membership to maximise their business potential, independently and collectively,” Hamilton added.