By David Brough
BIRMINGHAM, England – A record turnout by retailers powered busy enquiries at the March 5-6 Company of Master Jewellers (CMJ) Spring Trade Event.
The CMJ is the UK’s largest buying group, comprising independent jewellery retailers who typically gather together twice a year at trade meetings to order from their registered suppliers, across all segments of the trade from diamond to silver jewellery, watches, gemstones and packaging.
After a quieter edition last summer, there was a buzzy atmosphere around the March event with retailers reporting buoyant business in the upper and lower tiers of the market, while the middle segment was squeezed by a challenging economic backdrop in the UK, notably a climate of rising interest rates and inflation pressuring disposable incomes.
The mood was buoyant on the exhibition floor, translating also to the dance floor following the CMJ’s black tie networking dinner featuring entertainment by bands and a well-known magician.
The next round of trade events in the UK are expected to concentrate in September with the CMJ’s Autumn Trade Event, a Houlden Group trade gathering (another buying group); Autumn Fair; the UK Jewellery Festival, organised by Retail Jeweller magazine; and The Jewellery Show, at ExCeL, London.