Unlike metros, the relationship that people in smaller cities have with jewellery is indestructible. The sanctimoniousness of buying jewellery for special occasions is still prevalent and gold is seen as a solid investment. No chain store can replace the personal, one-on-one attention that these family jewellers have been giving their customers for generations, let alone their sound policies built on honesty and trust. Make no mistake, though they are located in smaller cities, their vision is as big as any corporate behemoth in a swanky metro. Vijetha Rangabashyam talks to 10 family jewellers from smaller cities across India to find out what has made them the best amidst their customers, even through this debilitating pandemic
As metros like Mumbai and Delhi are saturated, trying to compete with each other as well as corporate jewellers, these smaller cities are showing plenty of promise, thanks to family jewellers who have been serving several generations of consumers with utmost dedication.
Abharan Jewellers, Udupi, Karnataka – Appealing to the Modest Middleclass Mindset with Rock Solid Policies
Abharan Jewellers’ history dates back to 1935. Late Sri Burde Sadananda Kamath, the founder, was a tobacco merchant. From Udupi he would go to a place called Thirthahalli (Malnad area) to source tobacco leaves.People from Thirthahalli requested him to get jewellery made in Udupi. So, he started carrying jewellery along with him and that gave him the idea to start his own jewellery business. “In those days jewellery was all made-to-order. My grandfather had an older brother, so he handed over the tobacco business to his older brother to start his jewellery business in Udupi. He started keeping some ready-made pieces of jewellery way back in 1935. His USP was to give only 22-carat jewellery. Someone who bought a gold chain from him during those days came back to sell it at our store. I still have the 80-gm chain with me – I have checked it – it is pure 22-carat gold. So that is the example of his honesty in business practices,” says Subhas Kamath, a third generation jeweller, who successfully manages the brand with his father Madhukar S. Kamath and brother Mahesh M. Kamath.
In 1961, during the Gold Control Act, the business closed down because during those days 14-carat and 18-carat gold was introduced in the market and the family was not interested in selling jewellery in lower puity. The business recommenced in the year 1979 by Madhukar. Today, in Northern Karnataka, Abharan Jewellers is a household name, with 15 stores under its umbrella. The flagship store is around 13,000 sq-ft, housing both gold and silver jewellery.
We were the first to bring X-ray Caratometer in India in 1997 from Kleve, Germany. We have also introduced RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) tag, which has inventory management and antitheft features. I don’t think many in this field are using this technology Subhas Kamath, Partner
Nothing but Purity & Strong Policies
85 years in the business, there have been several accomplishments along the way. “We were the first to bring X-ray Caratometer in India in 1997 from Kleve, Germany. We have also introduced RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) tag, which has inventory management and anti-theft features. I don’t think many in this field are using this technology.” Today, Abharan’s turnover from all its stores is approximately Rs 1000 Cr. One of the brand’s cornerstones is a very strong policy, be it quality of jewellery or hallmarking. “Even during the conventional soldering period we used to buyback our jewellery at an affordable rate of reduction. To anyone who wants to re-sell our jewellery for cash, we have given them instant cash – even during demonetisation or Covid19 crisis. At all points of time we have tried to keep our word – when it comes to buyback policy. Today, we buyback– whether exchange or for cash – for exchange we don’t deduct anything – there is no reduction in value. For cash we deduct only Rs 15 per gm - Rs 20 per gm,” says Subhas.
Udupi – A Strong Middleclass Segment
Primarily, Abharan’s customers cater to middle class and lower middle class. Their preferences vary from wedding jewellery, depending upon their budget, their requirement, the store has a stock of heavy bridal jewellery to tiny earrings, finger rings and everything in between. The budget on advertising is Rs 5 cr, which is allocated towards both traditional and digital advertising. “A strong customer relation plays a major role to build customer loyalty towards our brand. We offer every customer a unique buying experience so that the customer prefers our brand whenever they want to buy jewellery. We strive hard to give them the best level of customer satisfaction and we usually get them to write about their experience – this feedback helps us build testimonials. At times, we give some gifts to select customers as well.”
10 years ago, Abharan Jewellers was the only prominent name in Udupi. With the opening of several stores, the business quadrupled. “But now it has stagnated. This means that a small share of the pie is going to rest of the stores in Udupi. Today, we have a customer base coming from a radius of 200 km, but earlier customers had to go all the way to Mangalore to buy jewellery. We see to it that we stay two steps ahead of our competition,” adds Subhas.
Ploughing through the Pandemic
From Dussehra, business has picked up, but it is not back to normal. “We have achieved about 75 percent of pre-Covid days. Even during lockdown, we have not laid off people and we have paid salaries regularly. We have given bonuses as well and at present we have only kept the increments on hold,” says Subhas. The brand is relying heavily on digital – from staff meetings to customer outreach everything is done online. Abharan was also one of the first brands to introduce a payment gateway, way back in 2000. “We were the first to introduce e-commerce, but frankly the e-commerce business was miniscule – initially there was absolutely no business conducted over the payment gateway. Customers would call us, and discuss the selected jewellery – which he liked on the website – and did a wire transfer to the bank and we dispatched the goods to him,” adds Subhas.
But since the lockdown, the brand has been seeing a good spurt in e-commerce business – it has sold jewellery worth Rs 2 crore for Akshay Tritiya purely through their website. “Now, we are doing video shopping, etc. conversions are about 30 per cent, which is much better than what it used to be before,” says Subhas.
CH Jewellers, Vadodara, Gujarat - Serving a very Design-oriented Demographic for 8 Generations
Jewellers to the Royal family of Saurashtra, CH Jewellers was founded by Shri Chimanlal Hargovindas Soni. He was the sixth generation jeweller in his family at the time and at a very early age, he joined the family business in order to relieve his father and grandfather from the daily commute to Vadodara. As word of his skilled craftsmanship spread, most wholesalers and manufacturers in Gujarat wanted to work with Chimanlal ji. Initially, the brand was in the business of manufacturing and wholesaling of jewellery. In 1987, Chimanlal ji along with his son Paresh Mandaliya opened their first retail outlet and in 1992, a second store was opened.
First in Many
In 2007, CH Jewellers opened a 45000 sq ft jewellery store. It was the biggest jewellery store in India at that time. “I joined the business in 2014. I started with two brand Aaloki (2017) and Aarhana(2015) by C H Jewellers. Aaloki is a very niche products store – we are planning to open stores across metro cities in India. At Aaloki, we only have auctioned pieces, high-end gemstones and diamond jewellery,” says Siddhant Mandaliya, an 8th generation entrepreneur. While Aarhana is a modern take on traditional jewellery, predominantly based in gold – but with different concepts – modern art combined with traditional jewellery.
CH Jewellers has carved a niche for itself in Vadodara and its reputation is built on several years of quality and trust. “We are known for unique designs and transparency in diamond and gold jewellery. This gave us a strong reputation, especially with our competitors. The variety we offer is very wide,” adds Siddhant.
Vadodara – A Cosmopolitan Hub
Vadodara is the industrial capital of Gujarat and the crowd is very cosmopolitan and jewellers here are competing with leading jewellers in metros like Mumbai or Delhi. “Clients in Vadodara want newness and a wider variety. A strong social media presence is important. Apart from prices, the variety that we offer and unique designs make us stand out from the crowd. Vadodara is well connected with bigger cities like Mumbai or Delhi and people are aware of the latest trends. So, we have to have to stock all kinds of jewellery – in terms of design, price and quality ,” says Siddhant. The people in Vadodara love to experiment when it comes to designs and for a brand like CH Jewellers, which is very design oriented, it is very important. “This clientele is unique – because our customers demand the very best and unique designs from us,” informs Siddhant.
Business back on its Feet
After the pandemic, the store operates only on appointment based system to avoid large crowds. “Managing time and people and observing social distancing was important for the business – we were able to give them personal attention and best buying experience when they visited our store. We knew exactly what they were looking for – we offered them the best jewellery we had and that way all were satisfied.” Thanks to their wide range of inventory and their customer service, the pandemic has not adversely affected the business. “Talking about volumes, the business has nearly touched 85-90 per cent of the previous year’s sales. Revenues are definitely higher than last year – because gold rates have increased tremendously,” affirms Siddhant.
However, the management is waiting for the situation to go back to normal to recommence its expansion plans. “Digitally, however, we are expanding quite rapidly. Our e-commerce portal will be up and ready soon. We are going to be more like a branded store; not like a one-stop store,” says Siddhant.
Clients in Vadodara want newness and a wider variety. A strong social media presence is important. Apart from prices, the variety that we offer and unique designs make us stand out from the crowd. Vadodara is well connected with bigger cities like Mumbai or Delhi and people are aware of the latest trends. So, we have to have to stock all kinds of jewellery – in terms of design, price and quality Siddhant Mandaliya, Director
Anopchand Tilokchand Jewellers, Raipur, Chhattisgarh – Being a Differentiator through Unique Offerings
The story began in 1957 by Late Shri Jasraj ji Baradia. 62 years since its inception, AT Jewellers has managed to become synonymous with jewellery buying in and around Madhya Pradesh. In 2000, the business was taken over by Saurabh Baradia. From a small establishment, the brand has grown strength to strength and has stores across Central India in Raipur, Durg, Bilaspur, Korba, Bhopal, and Gondia. “Our flagship store is located in Sadar Bazaar, Raipur. It is 10000 sq-ft in size and is spread out over five floors,” says Saurabh. Exclusive jewellery has always been AT Jewellers’ strong point. Since the brand also has its own manufacturing setup, it ensures that only innovative, neverseen- before jewellery is made. Today, the company has a turnover of Rs 1000 Cr. AT Jewellers’ unique designs and honesty and the trust that its customers have in their products and wide range of collection, has what has made them a household name in Central India. From south Indian designs to jadau and north Indian designs, their stores have it all.
The Evolving Crowd of Raipur
Raipur is a relatively new town and is growing at a very fast pace. “We keep
getting new customers and some of them also come from Maharashtra and Orissa as we are strategically located. We specialise in bridal jewellery and diamond jewellery and we are also known for designer pieces in precious stones. In our state people prefer heavy jewellery. We have a number of wealthy families – all of whom prefer buying from us for all their special occasions. We have a better variety than any store in any metro city, ” says Saurabh. However, at times, it does get difficult to compete with metros, as the mindset in small towns is that they want to buy from bigger cities. “We are well known by almost all our clients. Business is back to normal because almost all weddings are taking place now, post Diwali. Bridal jewellery is in demand – impulsive buying for personal consumption has declined. But business is back to normal – 100 per cent,” quips Saurabh
Working Hard Despite Uncertainty
The brand plans to expand to Orissa in the near future. Recently, AT Jewellers has introduced video calling facility which has garnered great response and business has grown immensely, thanks to technology. “After video calls, we deliver the jewellery to clients’ house. The only success mantra is – stay focused and work hard whatever the case may be,” says Saurabh.
We keep getting new customers and some of them also come from Maharashtra and Orissa as we are strategically located. We specialise in bridal jewellery and diamond jewellery and we are also known for designer pieces in precious stones. In our state people prefer heavy jewellery. We have a number of wealthy families – all of whom prefer buying from us for all their special occasions. We have a better variety than any store in any metro city Saurabh Baradia, Director
Jugal Kishore Jewellers, Lucknow/ Kanpur, UP – Impressing Brides for
more than 150 years
Jugal Kishore Jewellers was founded in 1857 by Shri Manimangal Rastogiji. It was further expanded by Shri Jugal Kishoreji. Today, the brand has stores across Lucknow and Kanpur. Raghava Rastogi is the 8th generation of jewellers to be involved in the family business. Four of the branches come directly under his supervision. The flagship store is at Hazaratganj, is the high street of Lucknow.
Setting High Expectations
Jugal Kishore’s clients always want best quality and variety – and the brand takes quality very seriously. “We have a lot of inter-generational buyers and they have a lot of demands. Their great grandfather or great grandmother may have bought from us, so now the current generation also has certain expectations from us. The bride is usually between 22-27 years of age. We
have to become her jewellery planner as well,” adds Raghava Rastogi. As a jeweller, the brand tries to help them with the best jewellery suitable for their look and body type. “We don’t try to up-sell jewellery simply because we want them to buy heavy jewellery.If it does not suit the bride, we don’t suggest it, instead, if she wants to buy a heavy choker we suggest that she adds a chain with a hook and an extra pendant which can be removed and worn separately as well. Not many jewellers think like this ,” says Raghava.
The Lucknow Edge
Places are accessible very easily these days. A lot of people living in bigger
metro cities have their roots in smaller towns of Northern India and during wedding season they all come back to their hometowns. “Often brides are wellinformed they know what they want. If I want something even in a day’s time, I can source it from Mumbai or Delhi. In Lucknow, yellow gold is preferred as compared to antique finish,” informs Raghava.
Lucknow also offers prospects to grow. It has become the hub for UP and within the radius of 200 kms people come to Lucknow for all their requirements – education, healthcare, catching a flight to go abroad etc. “There is a lot of scope to open more stores say about 20 km away from our existing stores and AR has helped us a lot to display our products. So people don’t mind trying on jewellery online and then later come to our stores to purchase it,” he says.
High on Principles
The brand has always followed 100 percent buy back policy. “We readily accept pieces bought at our store and offer our clients the best possible options. Often larger chain stores or large corporate-run jewellery units blatantly disregard and disparage other stores’ products when a customer goes in for an exchange – we never do that. A customer usually comes to us with full faith and tells other store owners too that this jewellery was bought from Jugal Kishore Jewellers and they are giving me a higher rate of return. We never sell any product which we will not be willing to take back in return,” quips Raghava.
Thinking Ahead of Times
Jugal Kishore has started delivering orders placed by its customers over video calls, augmented reality, whatsapp photo selections, etc. They have been receiving orders across India and abroad. “From late October to January is the NRI season in India but this time due to the pandemic a lot of people could not come to India. So we started delivering orders through couriers nationally and internationally as well. The value of their purchases may not be as huge as compared to what they buy when they come in person, but it helps retain our connect with them,” says Raghava. By the end of this year, the brand’s digital revamp will be in place. They will also be launching a new collection for youngsters using different materials with gold, along with carbon fibre, titanium, wood with rose gold etc. “There are two types of buyers, one is interested in buying gold for investment purpose and other would like to buy for indulgence and for the latter category we are introducing these innovations. This jewellery is in a budgeted range say between Rs 35,000 to Rs 1.5 lakhs. It is not an exorbitant range – the price is affordable,” he adds
We don’t try to up-sell jewellery simply because we want them to buy heavy jewellery.If it does not suit the bride, we don’t suggest it, instead, if she wants to buy a heavy choker we suggest that she adds a chain with a hook and an extra pendant which can be removed and worn separately as well. Not many jewellers think like this Raghava Rastogi, Partner
Bombay Jewels Paradise, Vijayawada, Andhra Pradesh – Adorning Loyalists
One of the oldest jewellers of Vijayawada, Bombay Jewels Paradise was founded by Shri Sokalchandji Jain in 1936. Sokalchandji moved to Vijayawada from Rajasthan and began with a small space, all of 60 sq-ft. Later on, four more such spaces were added to the umbrella and years later, the brand went on to open several stores. There are around 6 stores in Vijayawada, and the turnover is around 70 crores per store.
Vijayawada – A Hub of High Networth Individuals
“Customers come to us primarily for unique craftsmanship, quality and variety. Vijaywada clients are high net worth customers – they want designer jewellery, not regular jewellery. They prefer diamond jewellery with coloured stones and our customers also like jadau, kundan and temple jewellery – they are looking for a blend of modern and traditional,” says Prashant Jain. Most of their customers are long-standing customers and new ones come by word of mouth, as women talk to their friends and relatives in weddings.
Of Trust and Word of Mouth
Bombay Jewels Paradise clients discuss about the weight, design and prices and visit the stores with recommendation from other customers. “In a small town, many people know each other and trust other people’s judgment. But there is also tough competition. Overall, we have been working here for many years. During the pandemic we also faced difficulty of doing business – it picked up quite slowly. At present business is doing well,” says Prashant. In the near future, the brand is also planning to export jewellery. “”We are working towards it. Our success mantra is good customer relationship and building trust,” he adds.
Govind Dande & Sons, Nashik – The Most Favoured Jeweller of Nashik
The journey began on February 9, 1927 in Amravati by Late Shri Jaikrishna Shrikrishna Dande. In 1935, his son Shri Govind Jaikrishna Dande moved the business to Nashik. Devyani Dande is the fourth generation jeweller. The Store in Nashik today is 10,000 sq-ft in size and is located in the heart of the town. GDS was the first brand to introduce zero deduction policy in Maharashtra. “Earlier, when a customer would come to exchange old jewellery for new, almost all jewellers would deduct certain percentage of gold weight even if the product is bought from their own store. We were the first ones to do away with this, as we saw that customers were unhappy. We were also the first ones to start using Cartometer in Nashik,” adds Devyani. It was introduced in 2004 and brought in a lot of transparency in transactions. Today the brand enjoys a turnover of Rs 150 Cr from a single store.
Serving up Quality & Unique Experiences
Customer experience is one of the main USPs of the brand. In Nashik, people trust the appreciation that gold gives them and whatever savings they have, they prefer investing it in gold. “Our customers are mostly homemakers who buy good quality mangalsutra, earrings, bangles – which are quite heavy and strong so that they can be used for daily wear. They are influenced by regional actors who come in TV serials. Many people ask if we can make a similar piece for them,” adds Devyani. Smaller towns have geographical and demographic constraints. “If a mother comes and buys jewellery from us, her daughter who is married and lives in a bigger metro will probably buy from a corporate-run chain store and that is a constraint for us,” she says. However, the small knit community more than makes up for it. “We also know that our long standing customers will come to buy from us. We have families who buy from us since last 70 years or so.”
The Sheer Love for Gold
Despite the increase in rate – in terms of volume, people in Nashik are buying gold jewellery like in the past. “Gold has give 30-33 per cent returns in one year and that is why the jewellery business is doing well. Also as size of weddings has been curbed due to Covid19, families want to invest in gold. They give the newlyweds more gold instead of spending on other wedding arrangements,” informs Devyani
Staff like Family
For GDS, its employees are everything. “We usually look at our employees as our assets. When lockdown was declared, webought food supplies for our employees for the next three months till June-July. We did not have any layoffs, it is unethical to lay off people during a crisis.”
We have period coins nearly 700-800 years old at the store for customers to see and we have also maintained jewellery making tools used by my great grandfather and this makes us unique. Visiting store often is an educative and entertaining experience apart from buying jewellery – therefore people look forward to visit our store Devyani Dande, Director
Radhika Jewellers, Gandhidham, Gujarat – Exclusive Jewellery for Exclusive Clients
The business began in the 1980s by Shri Pratap Thacker, today the family
owns an exclusive store in Gandhidham. In the beginning, the brand was more focused on gold and silver jewellery. About 20 years back, they entered into diamond business which is also doing well. “I have a manufacturing unit in Mumbai and loose diamond unit in BKC. I have high end clients in South Mumbai and Walkeshwar. So I know what is selling in bigger metro cities, so I offer similar kinds of jewellery in my store in Gandhidham as well,” says Anil Thacker
Elevating the Design Experience
As clients started demanding high-end designer jewellery, the brand started a designing unit. “We keep high quality diamonds and stones, so our clients know that even in a small town they will get the best quality diamonds like any other metro in India. Our clients are well informed and they demand the topmost designs. In bigger cities, customers are more traditional in their preferences, whereas the high net worth clients from Gandhidham are more exclusive and prefer finest designer jewellery. They come to buy only after gathering lot of information ,” says Anil.
Doing Business in Gandhidham
According to Anil, the biggest challenge is inventory – every 15 days, customers come in to demand something new – so one needs to show them something new every time they walk in to the showroom. Maintaining a constant flow of new inventory each time is a challenge. “But generation after generation, the clients buy from our store – we have to cater to the preference of the earlier generation and the youngsters as well. We have to have a mix and match of variety. We have to work towards retaining the younger generation as our client as well.”
Fighting all Odds
The pandemic has surely affected business. The store connected with its customers over video calls. “We specialise in very high end jewellery. Many people know about our unique designs and trust that we will always give them something unique unlike any other jeweller in the region. So we have to watermark our photos, so that they don’t get copied. Even customization direction is given over phone call and video calls. We have a lot of satisfied customers. Business is quite good now,” informs Anil. Currently, the store is a small space. “We are coming up with a two-three storey building and we will operate from there. Some or our clients want privacy – they don’t want others to know what they are buying. We are thinking of opening a store in Mumbai also,” he says.
Our clients are well informed and they demand the topmost designs. In bigger cities, customers are more traditional in their preferences, whereas the high net worth clients from Gandhidham are more exclusive and prefer finest designer jewellery. They come to buy only after gathering lot of information Anil Thacker, Owner
A.Shankara Chetty & Sons, Mysore, Karnataka – Upkeeping Tradition & Quality
A jeweller to the Royal family of Mysore, A.Shankara Chetty & Sons was founded in 1925 by Shri A. Gopala Chetty. One of the oldest establishments of Mysore, today, from a small 500 sq-ft space, the store has expanded to 5000 sqft with five floors. The brand has to its credit for pioneering the gandaberunda jewellery designs for the royal family of the Mysore Maharaja & specializing in a wide range of monarch commissioned jewellery
In 1992, when the whole jewellery trade was quite traditional, A.G. Krishna Murthy, the founder’s son went abroad to study the jewellery trade practices and transformed the showroom based on his learnings. “He also changed the exchange policy to ‘no-questions-asked’ and offered 100 per cent value of gold for exchange. That brought in a huge leap in business,” informs Adarsh K Murthy, a fourth generation in the family business. In those days, when hallmarking was nonexistent, the store would guarantee to its clients that they can exchange jewellery bought from their store at any other store in Mysore at full value. Other jewellers too were sure that anything bought from ASC is going to be pure.
Adorning Great Grand Mothers to Grand Daughters
A lot of second and third generation customers come back to ASC because of the trust factor. “We see to it that we offer our customers the best. We don’t cut corners in keeping our customers happy. Above everything, I look after my staff as my family – when staff is comfortable, same treatment is given to the consumer as well. I think we are also one of the few jewellers to have a separate counter for men’s jewellery, with pens, watches, etc. We offer a new range of products every three months,” adds Adarsh.
Mysore – A Place of Fine Taste
The consumers of Mysore want fancy, latest high fashion jewellery is preferred by most clients. “Till now, consumers never used to bargain in our store. Chain stores offer a lot of discounts and encourage bargaining, so many people have started exhibiting similar behaviour in our store as well. We too therefore had to give in to their demands with time,” says Adarsh. Buying decisions are based on word of mouth – though ASC spends on social media, hoardings and all other advertisements but sales happens mainly by word of mouth. “We believe in the effectiveness of print media as well, though it is expensive consumers respond to these advertisements. In cities, till the age of 35 people do not want to invest too much money in gold. They would rather spend their savings on fancy mobile phones, gadgets, cars etc. In small towns, it is not so. People want to invest in gold because they know gold will be profitable for them in the long run.”
A city like Mysore is saturated. The younger generation has moved out to Bangalore or other metros. “There are many jewellery showrooms in Mysore today. That is the major challenge at present. We are traditional jewellers and so we offer hand-made jewellery with intricate designs, nakshi work etc. so our cost of production is high, but corporaterun jewellery stores have machine made pieces which all look the same and are light weight and cost of production is much lesser. When I explain this to some new customers, they don’t understand it.” However, Mysore has its advantages – people still like to walk in to owner-driven stores than chain stores because there the promises are not kept. “Sometimes a salesman from a larger chain store promises something which cannot be honoured because of his or her lack of knowledge of their company policy,” informs Adarsh.
We see to it that we offer our customers the best. We don’t cut corners in keeping our customers happy. Above everything, I look after my staff as my family – when staff is comfortable, same treatment is given to the consumer as well. I think we are also one of the few jewellers to have a separate counter for men Adarsh K Murthy, Managing Director
Nikkamal Jewellery House, Ludhiana, Punjab – Synonymous with Best Quality Jewellery
In 1870, Late Shri Jamnadas Jain Saraf Ji along with Shri Nikkamal Jain Saraf Ji founded Jamnadas Nikkamal Jain Saraf Pvt. Ltd. Under the leadership of Late Shri Hira Lal Jain Ji, the brand grew manifold. In 1992, in a bid to expand, a new venture Nikkamal Jewellers was initiated at The Mall Road in Ludhiana. Carrying forward the 150 year old legacy are Shri Chanderkant Jain and son Dipankar Jain, with a brand new addition, Nikkamal Jewellery House. Back in the day, when jewellery was only made to order based on client’s preferences, Nikkamal Jewellery House was among the first few jewellers to display jewellery and people would select and buy whatever they liked. So, thinking ahead of times was one of the founding principles of the brand.
Taking Customer Relationship to the Next Level
What sets Nikkamal Jewellery House is the trust that it has built with its clients over generations. “We have kept the best variety of designs. Our clients know what the best is and they know we will have it for them. The average consumer in Ludhiana looks for personal attention. In tier 2 and tier 3 cities people want full attention of the sales staff – they want store owners to cater to their needs. Social media influences buying decisions big time,” informs Dipankar Jain, a 7th generation jeweller.
No Compromise, Only Honesty
In Punjab, customers want gold and kundan than polki and diamond. Though things are looking much better, business is yet to reach the pre-Covid level. “We are on the road to recovery. Value wise business has reached the same level. As scale of weddings has reduced, this money spent on weddings and that money is being spent on jewellery,” adds Dipankar. After the pandemic, all expansion plans are currently on hold. “This is the time to consolidate and optimize ourselves and hold on to our business – the pandemic has taught me to think inside-out. What I have learnt from my father and grand father is be honest to the customer. We have to do right, sales will follow. Many jewellers compromise with quality in order to strike a deal. We do not do that ,” affirms Dipankar.
ANS Jewelry, Salem, Tamil Nadu – Winning Clients through Customisation
ANS Jewelry was founded by Late Shri AR Balasubramania Chettiar in 1928. From a humble beginning of a 500 sq-ft store in the old bazaar street, the brand has grown manifold, and has a sprawling showroom in Swarnapuri, a high street fashion destination in Salem. ANS Jewelry, started with two floors, expanded with a third floor exclusively for diamond jewelry satisfying all ages. It is also one of the first brands to start 916 Hallmarked jewellery in the state of Tamil Nadu. Today under the able guidance of a steadfast management team, the brand has become a household name in Salem and neighbouring destinations, when it comes jewellery. ANS Jewelry is also one of the very few stores in Tamil Nadu to
Standing for Uniqueness
“If consumers want something unique, they come to our store. We don’t believe in mass produced jewellery. We only have unique, handpicked, designer jeweller,” says Amruth Kumar, one of the partners. In Salem, jewellery buying is a family affair and people’s tastes are evolving. “Earlier there were standard designs like kasu mala and manga mala, now there is so much on social media and customers come asking for different designs andonly sell certified diamonds. Pinterest is one of the major influencing mediums, ” quips Amruth. However, the mindset is still traditional. People are not very experimentative here like in Bangalore and Chennai but the relationship with owner and customers are one on one. We are able to give personal attention to all our clients,” says Amruth.
Customisation is Key
The brand has always believed in customisation. “We have a catalogue model, where we show designs and then custom make it as per clients’ requirements. Customers from outside Salem also come to us for custom made jewellery,” says Amruth. The concept is unique but very use friendly – customers can send their favourite designs through a contact form to the jeweller. Based on the idea, the store will send them back sample designs. After reviewing the designs further, the jeweller begins with the manufacturing process
If consumers want something unique, they come to our store. We don’t believe in mass produced jewellery. We only have unique, handpicked, designer jewellery. Earlier there were standard designs, now there is so much on social media and customers come asking for different designs and Pinterest is one of the major influencing mediums Amruth Kumar, Partner