Jeweller, pawnbroker and financial services specialist Ramsdens has reported that the jewellery side of its business has propped the company up during the pandemic.

The Midlands-based company, which also boasts a handful of jewellery stores in South Wales and one each in Glasgow and South-West England, has this week posted its latest financial report on the six months to 31 March 2021.

By comparison to the same period one year earlier (which was almost entirely unaffected by the pandemic or lockdowns), Ramsdens has seen company-wide pre-tax profits take a dip from £2.3 million to a small loss of £0.1 million.

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Meanwhile, gross revenue also saw a 23% dive from £27 million to £20.8 million.

While the company’s foreign currency exchange business was understandably the worst-hit part, its jewellery revenue kept Ramsden’s losses to a minimum over the last 15 months or so.

Jewellery retail revenue increased 14% to £8.1m from £7.1 million last year despite lockdown periods and shop closures.

Online revenue, meanwhile, doubled year-on-year and now represents 17% of total jewellery sold.

Peter Kenyon, chief executive, commented: “We are pleased to have delivered a resilient performance during the period despite the difficult trading conditions experienced.

“This is a testament to the strength of Ramsdens’ diversified business model, our loyal customer base, and the commitment of our employees, whom I would like to thank for their continued dedication to serving our local communities throughout the pandemic.

“We are encouraged by the current easing of restrictions across the UK including the reopening of non-essential retail and the lifting of some international travel restrictions.

“Despite restrictions, during the period we continued to focus on delivering against our long-term growth strategy.

“We currently have six new Ramsdens stores in the pipeline including debut sites in London and the South East and will continue to appraise new site opportunities in line with our expansion plans.”

Ramsdens deals in new and pre-owned jewellery and watches.