De Beers Jewellers Sees Sales Drop

By Rapaport News / October 10, 2018 / www.diamonds.net / Article Link

RAPAPORT... De Beers Jewellers has pinpointed Asia as its area forexpansion after global revenue fell last year, according to accounts thecompany filed at the end of September. Revenue dropped 6% to $98.6 million in 2017 amid a "moredemanding customer environment," the retailer said. Its net loss widened to$37.6 million from $12.1 million the year before due to an impairment charge - apermanent reduction in the value of an asset - and the impact of currencyfluctuation. De Beers' retail unit sells in various local currenciesaround the world, but reports in dollars. Revenue from the company's Asian stores fell 10% to $34.6 million,while sales in the UK plunged 26% to $16.4 million, and those in the MiddleEast dropped 7% to $16.7 million. Europe saw a 17% rise to $21.5 million, andsales in the US climbed 18% to $9.3 million. The jeweler outlined plans to accelerate growth in Asia in2018 by opening new stores in China and Hong Kong that it would operate directly.The region is the jewelry retailer's strongest, comprising 14 stores at the endof 2017, as opposed to 16 the year before, the company said. De Beers Jewellersalso has six stores in North America, seven in Europe, versus nine in 2016, andfour in the Middle East - one more than the previous year. In accordance with UK rules, it files accounts several months after the end of the year, providing financial results, and an outlook for the year that is now well underway. "The company intends to accelerate its growth in greaterChina, become a truly omni-channel fine-jewelry brand, whilst making a positivefinancial contribution to its now sole shareholder," the jeweler said,referring to the De Beers group, which bought out LVMH's 50% share of the companyin 2016. Throughout 2018, De Beers Jewellers will review its storenetwork, closing some locations, and opening others in Asia, it added. So far this year, De Beers Jewellers has opened stores in multiplelocations, including Hong Kong, Russia and Saudi Arabia. Image: De Beers Jewellers' Harbour City store, Hong Kong. (De Beers Jewellers)