JCK’s competitor National Jeweler used to put out the Top 40 supplement, listing the top jewelry chains in America. At one point, it added a second supplement, the Next 60. Today, there might not even be 40 jewelry chains of notable size, never mind 100.
The biggest U.S.-based jewelry chain today is Signet Jewelers, with 3,600 stores—which includes 2,918 stores in the United States. That outranks its closest U.S. competitor by a 10-to-1 margin. But it also comprises a variety of store names. If you break it out by store brand, Signet occupies the first two slots as far as U.S. chains: Kay has 1,055 stores; Zales, 722.
Following that, as far as store count, is Fred Meyer Jewelers with 327 stores (as of last Friday).
But it’s not clear which chain is third. If you go by traditional jewelers, Helzberg Diamonds has 230 locations, including 16 outlets.
However, Pandora tops that with 315 concept stores, 12 behind Fred Meyer. There are two provisos here: Pandora is a monobrand store, and it’s not a chain in the traditional sense; 285 of those stores are franchises, says spokeswoman Keshia Holland. The company only owns 30.
Still, the fact remains, based on number of doors, Pandora concept stores can be seen as the third-largest jewelry chain in the U.S., within striking range of the number two slot. That depends on your definitions, however.
For the record, following those companies are Samuels Jewelers (104), which includes Rogers stores, and Tiffany & Co. (96). Signet-owned Jared tops both of those with 203 stores.