John Ayton hints at long-term goal for retailer at CMJ conference.
Jewellery retailer Annoushka, run by Links of London founders John Ayton and Annoushka Ducas, could be set to move into wholesale and franchise stores at some point in the future.
Ayton hinted at the possibility during an interview at the CMJ’s UK Jewellery Conference in Birmingham this week.
The husband-and-wife team built up Links of London as a hugely successful global wholesale business before selling the company and moving on to start up jewellery retail business Annoushka, which to date has not had a wholesale arm.
Ayton gave no specific time frame as to when this evolution might occur and said that in the near future the company would continue to focus on a retail-only strategy.
He said: “When we’re ready, when we really understand what we’ve got then we’ll be ready to wholesale or open shops with partners.”
As well as selling the work of other designers such as Bochic, Dickson Yewn and Wendy Yue, the store sells a wide selection of jewellery designed by Ducas.
Ayton took to the stage during the first UK Jewellery Conference to be interviewed in front of the delegates by CMJ Media director Sarah Carpin. During the conversation he also spoke about the benefits of launching new businesses in a recession.
He said: “We’ve done it three times with Links of London, Bremont and Annoushka. It is a great time to start a business and a great time for opportunities. It is an easy time to attract talent.
“Every bit of money we’ve spent [during the recession] we have thought is it going to drive our business forward? There is a lot of optimism [in the industry at the moment] but I think it’s going to be a tough 12 months.”