13 July 2018
Platinum Guild International’s latest jewellery business review reveals fascinating developments as well as growth opportunities in the platinum jewellery sector.
Young consumers as well as the bridal jewellery and self-purchasing markets are expected to drive growth in the platinum jewellery sector in 2018, the Platinum Guild International (PGI®) announced.
Citing the findings of its 2017 Platinum Jewellery Business Review, PGI® also reported strong retail sales growth for platinum jewellery in the US, Japan and India in 2017, outperforming gold jewellery in some areas.
“We saw above-market growth for platinum jewellery in three out of four key markets in 2017. This trend is tied to a robust global economy and historically low platinum prices, which together with an increasing preference for platinum among younger consumers, indicates growth potential in the platinum jewellery sector in 2018,” noted PGI® CEO Huw Daniel.
The findings of the latest Annual Platinum Jewellery Business Review were compiled by independent platinum market experts and industry analysts.
According to PGI®, India has become the engine of platinum jewellery growth globally. Despite continued challenges from new legislations, the industry saw year-on-year increases of 21 percent in retail sales in platinum ounces for the PGI® programme and 34 percent in fabrication ounce demand, compared to a 14 percent year-on-year growth in demand for gold jewellery, as reported by the World Gold Council.
A solid preference for platinum among young consumers is one of the strongest growth contributors to platinum jewellery demand in India. PGI® has created a distinct positioning for platinum versus gold in India, tapping into modern couples’ desire for jewellery that better represents the bonds of love in a relationship between equals. Through the Platinum Days of Love Campaign, platinum has become the metal of choice among today’s young Indian consumers who are shaping the country’s more modernised culture and fashion.
Bridal markets around the world have become strongholds for platinum jewellery across China, Japan, the US and India, revealed PGI®.
In China, despite continuing market challenges, PGI® has seen strong growth in platinum jewellery acquisition in the core bridal category. According to a recent consumer study covering 55 Tier 1 to 3 cities, the volume of platinum bridal jewellery purchases has increased by 22 percent compared to 2014. Platinum has become the dominant precious metal for wedding rings. However, with the industry facing continuous structural transitions and declines in marketing investment, China’s demand for platinum jewellery is likely to see another year of decline in 2018. China’s annual brand tracking survey shows that consumers strongly associate love with platinum, far ahead of other metals.
Bridal jewellery is a “gateway purchase” leading to subsequent platinum jewellery buying for anniversaries, birthdays and other milestones, which provides growth opportunities in 2018. Robust growth in China is fuelled by rising consumer affluence in Tier 2, 3 and 4 cities where a new generation of middle-class consumers is acquiring a taste for platinum pair rings exchanged during wedding ceremonies.
In India, the market is led by “love-gifting” with local retailers finding a foothold for platinum within the gold-dominated wedding category. The introduction of a new branded segment, Platinum Evara, a modern platinum jewellery collection given to the bride and groom before the wedding day has carved out a niche for platinum and created a new jewellery segment for the industry.
In the mature platinum jewellery market of Japan, platinum holds an astonishing 92 percent share in the engagement ring market and 82 percent share in the wedding rings category.
Strong results for platinum in the bridal jewellery segment are also mirrored in the west. In the US, the economic recovery and a bullish consumer sentiment have benefited the jewellery industry, leading to the fifth consecutive year of growth for platinum jewellery consumption at 11 percent. The growth mainly came from sturdy sales in bridal jewellery including engagement rings and wedding bands. In 2018, additional growth is expected, driven by initiatives promoting the use of platinum crowns that hold diamonds more securely, regardless of the choice of metal for the rest of the ring, along with increasing demand from the self-purchase category, which is likely to contribute 8 percent to 11 percent of total growth in the US.
Although majority of platinum jewellery sold is under the bridal sector, PGI® USA has also introduced a fresh selection of platinum-only, chain-based necklaces as part of the Platinum Born collection, to target women buying jewellery for themselves, in order to continue to optimise local market growth opportunities.
In Japan, which has the highest per capita consumption of platinum jewellery globally, platinum accounts for over 50 percent of total jewellery sales value.
Growth is fuelled by a strong self-purchasing market led by women with a strong affinity for platinum. Women generally control household finances and are increasingly retaining their jobs after marriage and childbirth. The resulting higher disposable incomes combined with historically lower metal prices have led Japanese retailers to continue substituting white gold stocks with platinum, leading to an overall increase of 2 percent in retail ounce consumption. Retail demand is seen to continue growing at 1 percent to 2 percent in 2018 driven by a moderate increase in the self-purchasing category, especially for heavier products such as Kihei chains and religious objects.
All information provided by PGI®