Jewellers banking on festival, wedding season sales

TE Raja Simhan Chennai | Updated on October 28, 2020

Tamil Nadu is one of the largest markets for gems and jewellery. But the Covid-19 pandemic, and the consequent lockdown affected this industry badly with sales plummeting as marriages were put on hold or postponed as also casual buying. From June 1, the lockdown was relaxed and jewellery shops reopened after a gap of over two months. But sales were poor as people avoided going out. “We are now betting on the wedding and festival season,” said N Anantha Padmanaban, Chairman, All India Gem & Jewellery Domestic Council and MD, NAC Jewellers, in an interview. Excerpts.

How has been the revival in jewellery sales in Tamil Nadu after the lockdown relaxations were announced?

Jewellery purchase is not a priority and comes last. So, it started slowly at about 10 per cent of normal sales.

How is the festival shopping likely to be for the sector ?

We are betting on the wedding season and the festival season. With the pandemic slowing down and with more relaxation we expect our sales to go up to 60-70 per cent of pre-Covid levels before Diwali.

How has been the shopping experience for customers post lockdown ?

Even though fewer customers shop, those that do are satisfied with the procedures that are being followed to ensure a safe shopping experience. Customer safety is most important, from the time they enter till they leave. We follow all the procedures laid down by the government and we take extra precautions for their safety.

What are new measures that are unique this year to bring back customers to the shops ?

Video calls have been introduced and customers go through the designs and the selected ones are delivered home to finalise. It’s been welcomed by the elderly who couldn’t come out for shopping. Video calling also helps customers who visit the shop to show their selections to their parents and grandparents as they are not able to come out because of pandemic and age factor.

Published on October 28, 2020

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