Leading national and independent jewellery retailers from around the UK have revealed their most recent greatest achievements.
Reflecting on the last 12 months, jewellers share their biggest success stories of 2019:
2019 was a memorable year for Beaverbrooks as the family-run business celebrated its landmark 100th Birthday. Managing director at Beaverbrooks, Anna Blackburn, shares: “Our 100th year has been nothing short of incredible, from celebrating our heritage, colleagues and products to coming off the back of our five most consecutive profitable years. A significant milestone, our centenary year has given us the opportunity to go above and beyond with our core purpose of Enriching Lives, a purpose which simply means making a positive difference to the world we live in. It’s also given us the opportunity to celebrate with our colleagues, our customers, our suppliers and the wider community… and boy have we celebrated! We were also very proud that Beaverbrooks’ director, Andrew Brown, was the very first recipient of the Professional Jeweller Lifetime Achievement Award. After shaping Beaverbrooks into what it is today, this accolade was the perfect tribute to Andrew’s 57 wonderful years with both the company and jewellery industry.”
Over the course of 2019 Laings had a real focus on giving back, raising almost £14,000 for its charity partner, the British Heart Foundation, and putting the workforce first by concentrating on mental wellbeing. Throughout the year team members took part in a variety of fundraising events, from giving up chocolate to completing the gruelling Glasgow to Edinburgh trek. Highlighting the importance of workplace mental health was also an extremely well-received activity, which saw all stores and head office get involved and feel valued. HR coordinator, Olivia Smart, organised ‘Kindness Boxes’ to be placed in each location. All employees were encouraged to write supportive and motivational messages to each other, posting them in their Kindness Box. In addition to this Kirsty Owens, Laings training coordinator, created an e-module focused on Mental Health Awareness. This had a positive impact on the team as it strengthened the family feel of the business and boosted morale.
“I would say we had two greatest achievements,” reveals F.Hinds sales development director, Jeremy Hinds. “Firstly was the purchase of Chapelle, where we were able to save 12 stores and over 80 jobs. Secondly has been the continued investment into F.Hinds and being able to post positive figures even during turbulent times across the high street. Chapelle has impacted our business in a very positive way. It’s allowed us to open up conversations with suppliers we may not have dealt with before or for a long time. It’s given us an opportunity to review both brands strategies as well as giving us useful insight into trends and sales. It has added to our workload as a company but for obvious gains in terms of turnover. As ever our staff have been amazing in dealing with these challenges.”
ROX managing director, Kyron Keogh, comments: “Without a doubt growing our ROX store portfolio with the addition of two stunning new stores was our greatest achievement. In November we opened a boutique in Liverpool at Liverpool One quickly followed by our third stand-alone store at the iconic Argyll Arcade in Glasgow. Both stores have a distinctive and undeniably luxurious design helping to position us as one of the most innovative and exciting independent jewellery brands in the UK. We launched both stores in November to capitalise on Christmas trading and our aim was to be able to showcase more product and inspiration for shoppers than ever before. We are confident our quality product range offers something new to Liverpool shoppers and by opening our third site in the Argyll Arcade we are increasing brand awareness and visibility at this crucial shopping period.”
JACOBS THE JEWELLERS
“The highlight of 2019 for us was closing off our 70th anniversary celebrations with our local NHS Foundation trust. Fundraising for new cancer treating equipment had taken place over 2018, though the final tally appeared in February at over £93,500 as a direct donation. The impact was wider than we imagined — local press coverage, customer and team engagement as well as in the latter stages of 2019, winning awards such as Professional Jeweller’s ‘Independent Fine Jeweller of the Year’. Quite hard to top, but our 75th anniversary isn’t far off,” reports Jacobs the Jewellers director, Adam Jacobs.
HARRIET KELSALL BESPOKE JEWELLERY
Last year Harriet Kelsall Bespoke Jewellery built on the success of its London store opening on Primrose Hill. As its newest store, the jeweller was overwhelmed to have the studio recognised by peers and receive an award for ‘Visual Merchandising and Store Design’. “We work hard to communicate our bespoke expertise at every touch point to stay relevant to our customers, both within our studios and online. This recognition has encouraged us to continue innovating within the field and engaging with our customers to create a unique and personal experience during their time with us,” Harriet Kelsall shares with Professional Jeweller.
Independent jewellery retailer founder Trevor Fitzgerald celebrated 40 years in the industry in 2019, which was a huge achievement both personally and professionally. Fitzgerald Jewellers in Canterbury celebrated in style with a charity ball for local homelessness charity Porchlight. The celebrations allowed the retailer to reconnect with customers both old and new as they came out in full force to cheer the store owner. It has also been a great marketing promotion tool for the business.
ANJA POTZE FINE JEWELLERY
This independent jewellery retailer reached 25 years in business last year, a real milestone which was celebrated in style with customers and friends at the Museum of Royal Worcester. Namesake founder, Anja Potze, says: “I started the business with a small cabinet in a ladies clothing boutique, and now here I am in my own boutique! I’m very proud of the last 25 years, and I look forward to many, many more.”
Events have been a high point for independent jeweller, Fabulous. From an in-store Mother’s Day event, to the company’s annual Summer Garden Party at a country house hotel, to a September focus group in a coffee shop, to the in-store Christmas launch, attendance remains strong, customer feedback has been excellent and sales have been higher than ever at events.