PGI Achieves 24% Sales Growth in India

Vaishali Banerjee

Mumbai: Platinum Guild International (PGI) today announced the result of its third annual Retail Barometer.  This research is conducted by a 3rd party agency, StratWon Business Consulting. The Retail Barometer gives a unique view of platinum demand from the retail sales perspective and trade sentiment for the forthcoming year.

The research survey covered over 21 retail companies, with approximately 310 retail outlets across the key platinum markets across India. The research was conducted between January and February 2016.

Key Highlights of the Report:

  • Platinum Jewellery was the bright spark for the industry with a retail sales growth of +24% in 2015. It was also the only category to consistently grow every quarter
  • PGI’s Strategic Partners have delivered a growth of 25% at an all India level
  • Platinum jewellery is on a growth curve with growing consumer acceptance, increasing distribution and successful branded programs
  • PGI Retail partners are optimistic about 2016 with all types of jewellery, but especially platinum and diamond jewellery. Forecasted a growth rate of 23% with Strategic Partners estimating a higher growth of 25% in 2016

The key findings of Retail Trade Barometer for India are:

Platinum Jewellery (PJ) trends 2015

  • Platinum rings and bands launched in 2009 on the back of Platinum Day of Love, is now considered a main stay category, though there is still potential to drive incremental volumes. There is a high acceptance of platinum in the category of Couple Bands due to the PDOL campaign
  • Platinum Evara the bridal jewellery brand was launched early last year, Evara provides the retailers with an opportunity to increase piece weight, margins and the size of their platinum business
  • The Evara advertising and marketing program has driven both consumer enquiry and sales for Evara and also had a positive effect on driving men’s jewellery sales
  • Although Evara is still in the nascent stage of the product life cycle it has seen great response from consumers. Retailers are of the opinion that it will typically take about 2 years to establish a brand
  • Increasing acceptance of platinum by men has ensured a high growth in Men’s Jewellery fuelling the growth of plain platinum sales which now contributes to 47% of sales
  • Platinum jewellery grew by 24%, out of this 53% was dominated by studded platinum jewellery

Overall Jewellery Category:

  • Jewellery demand rebounded in H2 CY15. Q4 pushed sales and improved consumer sentiment. However, sales for the heavy bridal sets, the mainstay of most retailers was much lower in 2015
  • The primary focus for retailer’s remained in the bridal segment which contributes to 60% of the overall jewellery market in India.
  • The retailers reported a gold jewellery growth of 8% while diamonds were flat

International Retail Barometer Findings:

  • The research survey covered over 400 jewellery retail companies with approximately 23,000 retail outlets in the four main international markets of China, India, Japan and the USA. The research was conducted between January and February 2016.
  • The low platinum price has created a buying opportunity for more consumers, as well as a margin opportunities for retailers
  • In China retailer chains and PGI’s strategic partners significantly outperforming the market
  • In Japan demand for platinum jewellery coupled with a shift in share of heavier product led to an overall growth of +2.7%
  • In the US market had an overall growth of +10%, owing to the low platinum prices

Huw Daniel, CEO of PGI, commented, “Despite manifold challenges in the luxury category and a difficult year for jewellery in general, jewellery retailers vested in platinum have weathered the storm ahead of their peers. The historically low platinum metal price has benefitted consumers and retailers alike, presenting a unique opportunity to acquire the most aspirational fine jewellery. India is a very exciting market and PGI is bullish about the prospects here, particularly in the light of the launch of the new bridal segment, Platinum Evara. Due to our constant efforts the Indian platinum jewellery market grew by 24%, outperforming the forecast. We look forward to strong growth numbers in 2016.”

Ms. Vaishali Banerjee, Country Manager India, PGI said, “Platinum has seen an excellent growth of 24%, despite it being a very challenging year. Insight based focused strategies has helped us deliver growth last year. We fuelled the desire for platinum, by creating new jewellery occasions and fulfilled unmet consumer demands through each of our brands. Through our communication we focused on establishing Evara as a wedding jewellery. And to enhance our reach further, we created a robust digital strategy in jewellery space which is crucial to engage with our core target group. And lastly, we established platinum as the most emotional jewellery metal that can drive higher margins for our trade making platinum both strategic and integral to their business.”

She further added, “The outlook for 2016 is optimistic given that young India resonates with platinum. Through our initiatives and strategies we will continue to build further momentum.”

Vijay Jain, CEO, ORRA said, “While there was an overall slowdown in gold and diamond jewellery sales in 2015, platinum sales saw a robust growth of 24%. Apart from the mainstay category of Love Bands, we have seen an excellent response for Evara, which had a positive rub off on Men’s Jewellery.  Although at a nascent stage, Platinum Evara provides great opportunity for retailers to increase their average unit price.”

Joy Alukkas, Chairman & MD, Joyalukkas Group, said, “Joyalukkas was one of the first brands in India to launch platinum jewellery. Rings, mainly wedding and engagement bands was popular when we introduced platinum jewellery, however at present, our stores are selling a wide range of platinum jewellery for both men and women. Post launch of Evara, in our stores last year, we have seen considerable growth in demand for platinum jewellery, especially from customers shopping for bridal jewellery. Evara is a fairly new brand, so we believe, with a wider awareness the brand has the potential to grow in a very big way in the long run. We saw a 30% growth in Platinum jewellery at our showrooms last year and we feel in 2016 the growth will be even better.”

Kalpanik Choksi, Managing Director, I H Jewellers, Ahmedabad said, “Modern designs combined with the subtle look of platinum have found appeal amongst young men which has helped increased demand for men’s jewellery at our stores. Evara has helped us increase the choice we offer our consumers in the bridal jewellery space.  We are very excited with the consumer response for Evara. With increase in sales of men’s jewellery and Evara, we have seen a growth of 50% in platinum sales.”

Pratap Madhukar Kamath, Managing Director, Abaran Timeless Jewellery Pvt Ltd said, “Platinum as a category has been growing YOY for us despite gold and diamonds having dropped. We have maintained an optimum stock level across our stores and good marketing support from PGI has helped us achieve good sales. We look forward to a great season of sales ahead.”

Suvankar Sen, Executive Director, Senco Gold & Diamonds said, “As we expanded our presence in Mumbai & Bangalore, we ensured we took platinum to these cities. Platinum jewellery sales has grown by over 25% across our stores. Rings are the fastest moving categories in platinum followed by earrings & pendant sets. We have also seen increase in men buying into platinum chains and bracelets. With the increasing awareness amongst consumers in tier 2 & 3 towns, we see opportunity this year to introduce platinum in our stores in these cities.”