Goldsmiths Boutique to install vending machines

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Aurum’s first new concept store to open in September at Stratford.

Aurum is planning to sell branded fashion watches and jewellery through vending machines at its new Goldsmiths Boutique retail concept set to launch in September at London’s Westfield Stratford.

The vending machines will be accessible outside of shop hours, allowing customers to continue shopping for lower-priced items by using a credit card to purchase them.

In an interview with Professional Jeweller, Aurum chief executive Justin Stead said: “I was in New York with my property director Richard Gerrard and the top-end brands were all selling products through vending machines and it struck me it would be perfect in the UK. If a boy is at the cinema and he wants to buy a Lovelinks bead for his girlfriend but the shop is shut he can use his credit card and buy at the vending machine.”

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The vending machines will be just one aspect of the innovative, fresh store design that Aurum has planned for its newest fascia Goldsmiths Boutique. Stead added: “There will be a new DNA for the fascia and it will be a fashion store with lots of theatre. The stores will be very interactive and the products will be out there for people to touch and feel. The design will be very different [to current Goldsmiths shops].”

Goldsmiths Boutique is a new concept for Aurum that will see it enter the fashion end of the watch and jewellery market. It will be a multi-brand store selling brands such as Fossil, DKNY, Juicy Couture, Hugo Boss, Police, SuperDry, with all price points below £300.

The first Goldsmiths Boutique will open at London’s Westfield Stratford shopping centre in September, followed by a second store in Lakeside in Thurrock. If the concept proves to be successful, Aurum will start looking for additional “appropriate locations” for further Goldsmiths Boutique stores.

Stead believes that the fashion-led Goldsmiths Boutique will fill a gap in Aurum’s portfolio and allow it to have a presence in places that it has not entered before due to the high-end nature of Goldsmiths, Mappin & Webb and Watches of Switzerland.

He added: “If everything checks to plan then we’ll look to roll out [Goldsmiths Boutique] in the UK in appropriate locations. Take St Pancras for example. We’ve been looking at it for a while but none of our current brands would work there, but Goldsmiths Boutique would, it would make a lot of sense.”

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