First ever International Gems and Jewellery Show at Hyderabad did not click as expected. Participants called for more elaborate local promotions next time.The Hyderabad Jewellery, Pearl & Gems Fair-2008 organized by CMP concluded after a medium to luke-warm turnout during its four days – 24 to 27 July, 2008. Interacting with media persons soon after the inauguration ceremony, Minister for Major Industries, Govt. of Andhra Pradesh, Dr. J. Geeta Reddy said the state government was setting up an exclusive jewellery mall in Banjara Hills, Hyderabad with all modern amenities. She invited the industry to avail of the opportunity. She said that the expo would help local jewellers learn about global trends. While exhibitors from India like P. Manoharlal, Mangatrai, Mussadilal Exporters, MBS, and Meena Jewellers participated in the Show, a moderate range of international designs including diamonds from Antwerp, diamond studded jewellery from Hong Kong and Thailand was displayed by overseas operators. The Show also attracted many small and medium retailers from the southern Indian states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala and Andhra Pradesh.
Local Consumers Outnumber Traders :Local consumers outnumbered the traders in this Show. As Shailang from Ankit Gems put it, “We expected more of wholesalers of south India to come, but we have received mostly end-consumer queries which are not useful for us.” Elaborating upon this sentiment, Nirav Virani, Director of Karp Impex maintained, “The Show has not been satisfactory as there were more of end-consumers.” Chitravat Mahatchavaroj from Vichit Sind Jewellery, Bangkok voiced a similar sentiment, “A very good turnout of consumers and we have received high appreciation from everyone.” Mahatchavaroj adds, “But we are here for trade and we are almost disappointed to say that we have come across lesser trade enquiries than expected.” Taking a cue from the fact that it was the Show’s debut in the city, Nirav Virani rationalized, “Of course we must give the Show more time to develop.” He added that his company would be exhibiting in all major exhibitions in India henceforth.Smart Arts Managing Director, Pradeep Lodha conveyed a fair degree of optimism by saying, “We have received retail enquiries for our diamond jewellery.” But he added a word of caution, “We have to wait and watch how many of those enquiries culminate in orders.” Lodha stressed that traders need to take into account the fact that the south India market was very discerning about quality and color while making gems and jewellery purchases. Even though the Show was inundated with direct consumers, some participants preferred to view it in a different light. Said Kanu Mehta, Head of Sales & Operations, Ciemme Jewels, “The Show has been excellent and had been a great platform for B2C and brand awareness.” Mehta said that he was confident that the Show would produce better results next year.Retailers have to Educate Consumers :Commenting upon the overwhelming presence of end consumers, Sanjay Virani of Dharmanandan Diamonds said, “End consumers are not always well informed to understand the fine points about their jewellery.” He stressed that amongst the many roles retailers have to play in jewellery sales, educating end consumers happens to be one of the foremost. He said that the Hyderabad Show must grow into a good B2B event and it is up to the organizers to do whatever it takes to achieve this objective in the coming years.Attraction of Latest Technology :To the delight of the visitors, the Show participants also came up with innovative ways to reach out to the customers’ hearts. Speaking about their strengths in manufacturing ideal cuts for Hearts & Arrows, Kevin Lewy of Overseas Diamonds from Antwerp said, “We are exhibiting for the first time in India.” Kevin explained that his company has introduced the ISee2 technology that helps check the performance of diamonds. By means of a very interesting demonstration he showed how the technology worked. He said it was vital for a retailer to gain the customer’s confidence and it was especially so in the luxury goods industry. With the state-of-the-art technology, Overseas Diamonds is all set to install two ISee2 machines, one each in Chennai and Bangalore.
First Welfare Jewellery :Jewellery has been used by mankind for various reasons. One good reason has always been the welfare factor associated with adorning jewellery. Reportedly the pioneer in employing proprietary technology to produce jewellery keeping in mind various health benefits associated with natural gemstones like diamonds, sapphires, rubies and emeralds, Agems Jewellery showcased their creations as the world’s First Welfare Jewellery. Speaking about the company’s strategy in India, Eric Banks, Agems’ President said, “We are looking to penetrate Indian market through a franchisee system.” Eric Banks said that he believed the Hyderabad Show would be a good launching pad for Agems Jewellery in India.While Hall A did comparatively well, Hall B was half empty as there were fewer visitors. Lamented Shailang from Ankit Gems who were exhibiting in Hall B, “We have been highly disadvantaged as we find a lot of people are going away after visiting Hall A as they seemed to be unaware about the displays in Hall B.” Some of the participants also felt that the below expectation showing at the event could be attributed to inadequate publicity and promotion locally
.SEZ to Set the Tone for Future :The Hyderabad show comes in the wake of the gems and jewellery Special Economic Zone’s (SEZ) development there. Experts also believe that the zone had the potential to be comparable to major diamond cutting cities like Surat and Ahmedabad in the near future. Minister Geeta Reddy informed that 5,000 young trainees are already being initiated into the precious trade at the SEZ.Advantage Pearls !Perhaps, one of the saving graces of the Show came from the local retailers who either placed orders or gave appointments to meet a number of jewellery manufacturers. Also, the venue being a hub for pearls, this item of jewellery received brisk response. Quite notably, jewellery from Thailand was well appreciated. In the final analysis, the overwhelming presence of retail players and end consumers in contrast to the number of manufacturers who participated in the Show, loose diamond and colorstone exhibitors experienced less than satisfactory response. To sum up, while business in pearls was very good, traditional jewellery along with Thewa and Kundan Meena also fared well. On the gems front, while color gemstones and loose diamonds felt friendless, diamond jewellery could give an average performance.