Diwali is always a special occasion in terms of sales for the jewellery industry, but this year, the grand festival holds the promise of a particularly big boom in view of the wedding season coinciding with the festive season, discovers Suneeta Kaul
Diwali is round the corner, and jewellers all over the country are supercharged to make the best of the festive season. Gold prices are on an upward spiral, and that will have a direct impact on the sales volume. Interestingly, however, the rising prices present a paradox – while some sections of the industry feel the buying sentiment might be hampered a bit, others say the jump in gold prices always augurs well for overall sales. The India Bullion and Jewellers Association (IBJA) has already declared that the industry should be looking at 20%-22% higher sales this Diwali.
Retailer expectations this festive season
Retailers are unanimously of the opinion that this Diwali, the market will show remarkable strength. “The signs of this strong market buoyancy began during the Shradh month and has continued since,” says Dr Saurabh Gadgil, PNG Jewellers, Pune, adding, “Prices have been consistently rising, fostering a bullish sentiment in the market. This has led to increased consumer purchasing across various categories, including jewellery and bullion.
“In terms of anticipated sales, we believe there will be a significant increase in realization this year, possibly around 30%-35% higher in value, compared to the previous year. Additionally, we expect a 15%-20% rise in quantity terms. Overall, we are extremely bullish that this Diwali will indeed be a prosperous one!”
With Diwali falling late this year, the festive season is expected to merge seamlessly into the upcoming wedding season, adding to the overall commerce. Explains Jinesh Mehta, Kaamya Jewels, Mumbai, “This year, we’re celebrating a late Diwali because of the adhik month. The wedding season is just around the corner too. With both the festive and wedding season coming on, we’re expecting a 15%-20% higher sale this year.”
In anticipation of a sales boom, retailers have been readying themselves for the big bang for quite a while. “This year, I am totally positive about Diwali. We have well-planned targets in place, the entire team is charged, incentives are planned, sales-centric schemes are ready, and we have procured our new collection in rose gold. Besides, we are showcasing huge variations in mangalsutras this Diwali. We anticipate a big surge in our Diwali sales, and have projected 25% additional sales this year, when compared to last year’s period from Navratri to Diwali,” declares Tejpal Ranka, Ranka Jewellers, Pune.
Several retailers have taken the opportunity to come out with trendy collections, anticipating big sales at this time of the year. “Diwali being a busy season, we plan six to nine months in advance to bring new, innovative and grand jewellery to customers,” says Dr C Vinod Hayagriv, C. Krishniah Chetty Group of Jewellers, Bangalore. “In addition, in view of our extensive design capability, we have come out with some work-wear jewellery sets with diamonds, and precious and natural gemstones. Thanks to our service and design, we have steadily grown in value and quantity every year, year after year. We hope to do so this year as well, and Diwali will be a great occasion to showcase our new offerings. Overall, we believe we will surely outgrow last year,” he adds.
Then there are those who proclaim that they are in a state of readiness all year round. Says Akshay Verma, Verma Jewellers, Solan, “No doubt, Diwali is a special occasion, but for us, every day is a Diwali. We remain positive and focussed every day. It is a question of a mindset. If we work hard all year round, only then will Diwali be prosperous. Our core culture is such as to ensure that we put in our best on a daily basis. I would say this Diwali, our sales are going to go up by 200%. During Navratras, they went up by 97%. So yes, we are on a roll.”
New trends this Diwali
With the sales volume expected to be particularly high this Diwali, jewellers have taken care to launch new collections. Diwali being the biggest festival of the country, consumers are on a buying spree, and ready to try out new offerings. Retailers say that this year, the trends indicate that heavy jewellery will sell big.
“There is a significant demand for heavy jewellery this time, representing a major departure from the pandemic era, which favoured lightweight jewellery. Additionally, there is a renewed interest in wedding jewellery, with India set to host approximately 35 lakh weddings in the next three months,” says Dr Gadgil.
The surge in weddings is going to be a significant driver of demand. Positivity among consumers is running high, and retailers are anticipating a busy and prosperous Diwali season. “Our inventory planning has predominantly focused on heavy jewellery in order to align with market preferences. As a result, we have increased our inventory levels in stores to meet the demand for heavy jewellery. This strategic approach has positively impacted our sales, and we expect this trend to persist,” Dr Gadgil adds.
Additionally, temple jewellery is expected to fare very well this year. Says Verma, “For Diwali, we have created fusion temple jewellery. Though temple jewellery is mostly a South Indian phenomenon, we have introduced it here in Solan as well. We have added CZ and enamel to it, and given it a modern twist. We are doing very well in this segment, and it is safe to say that temple jewellery is an exciting trend this Diwali.”
Agrees Dr Gadgil, “Heavy jewellery designs, a blend of temple with kundan, and temple with polki, and the mix-and-match approach are shaping the trends. Wedding jewellery innovations are leading the way and driving the overall sales trends for us.”
In keeping with the trend of heavy jewellery this year, CKC has launched heavyweight collections. Sharing details, Hayagriv says, “This season, we are presenting the Durbar Collection of Gold jewellery, which is a tribute to the Mysore Royalty. In this collection, we are offering authentic designs reflecting the nuances of the Mysore Palace.
“Then there is the Grand 1869 Diamond Solitaire Sale, which is a collection of fine natural diamond solitaires that come with iron-clad guarantees of DiamondAir. We are also offering the Kasu Collection, which is another offering created with motifs inspired by H. H. Krishnarajendra Wodeyar. In silver, we have on sale and display Pancha Shakti Samyukta, an auspicious design based on all the nine days of the Navaratri festival.”
However, this is not to say that minimalist jewellery is not finding favour with customers. Explains Ranka, “This Diwali season, we have launched a special pret collection at a special price point. The jewellery is very minimalist and classy, targeting the new-age consumer -- the mother and daughter both. We have also launched a special cuff and brooch line for men. Most retailers are focusing on heavy jewellery this Diwali, so we decided to launch something different.”
Kaamya Jewels has also focussed on ‘something different’. “This year – not just for Diwali, but for the wedding season too – we’ve developed a range called ‘Kaan’. It’s a stunning collection of ear cuffs – a traditional age-old accessory that we’re hoping to bring back with a contemporary touch,” reveals Mehta.
Diamond jewellery adding sparkle to Diwali
While the focus, during the Diwali season, is on gold, diamonds are also adding sparkle to the festivities. De Beers Forevermark is upbeat on strong sales this festive season, with much of the volume expected from South India. The global diamond brand expects around 20%-25% overall growth in diamond jewellery sales this festive season.
Says Amit Pratihari, De Beers Forevermark, “This festive season, we are expecting substantial growth, with South India being a significant driver. With the wedding season coinciding with the festivities this year, the consumer buying sentiment, particularly for jewellery, is highly positive, and the demand is expected to continue into the new year as well.”
Riding on the back of the recent trend of buying diamond jewellery, in addition to gold, during the Diwali festival, other retailers are also showcasing diamond jewellery specifically for the festive occasion. “We are offering work-wear diamonds in the range of Rs 5 lakh,” says Hayagriv, adding “Work-wear diamond jewellery is what we believe will be highly popular. Our offerings in this segment are trendy and well-made, with high quality diamonds, exceptional craftsmanship, breathtaking colours and innovative techniques.”
Retailers are also offering colour gemstone-studded jewellery for both the festive and wedding season. “If there’s anything that is the talk of the town, it is gemstones. This festive season, we’re looking to present our customers with fine gemstones and natural diamonds,” Mehta says.
With so much on offer for Diwali this year, the occasion is bound to bring glad tidings to the entire industry, with the good times expected to extend right into the new year in view of the impending wedding season.