Signet CEO Sees Independent Jewelers Turning Toward High-End

Independent jewelers are increasingly turning toward the luxury end of the business, leaving the midmarket behind, Signet CEO Virginia Drosos told the Goldman Sachs 24th Annual Global Retailing Conference on Sept. 6.

“Most of the growth among independents comes at the higher-end, or…the luxury tier of that market,” she said. “As midmarket players, we don’t mind having a luxury tier because it helps to set value in the category.”

She added that while there are “fewer and fewer” midmarket independents, “this luxury tier of independent jewelers is here to stay.”

She noted that the rate of closures of independent stores had slowed a bit, and after a few flat years, the jewelry market is starting to see “low single-digit growth.”

Other points she made during her presentation:

– Signet currently claims about 13 percent of the U.S. jewelry market, more than double the share of its closest competitor.

–  Company research has found that 80 percent of millennials buy diamonds when they get engaged, roughly equal to previous generations.  However, it’s found greater involvement with women in the purchase process.

– Among both millennials and non-millennials, jewelry remains a top-three item that people want as a gift.

– Signet’s research shows that 85 percent of jewelry is purchased at brick-and-mortar stores, and at least 90 percent of bridal purchases still involve a store visit.

(Image courtesy of Signet)


JCK News Director

13 responses to “Signet CEO Sees Independent Jewelers Turning Toward High-End”

  1. Lots of work to be done . Yes lots of repairing of outlet Division and customer service and employee relations need to be her first on the agenda. Employees leave because of bad managers and because of poor relationships with the home office HR and benefits and compensation to the store employees. Look at the HR turn over % that by it self will say it all. Also stop in a store and see how the feeling is . Just a poor experience from the past before Sterling took over other companies. Good Luck Signet Hope you can keep your investors happy. Lots of work is needed in all areas of operations and repair of trust with all divisions and store labels. Yet let’s not forget the credit portfolio still all not sold to anyone. Why lets see what the real ageing of in store credit is doing? Still investors have a surprise with that box that has not been open.

    • You are on right track but I doubt if it is, They are losing market share to the internet and independents. Signet is losing control with Zales and Kay ….. all their merchandise looks the same and they are competing with themselves for market share. The market is slowly moving to internet based websites some from China & India undercutting everyone.

      Signet service sucks and even their staff now feel insecure.

      High empty mall rents and upkeep, low mall walk ins leads to low or poor profits. They really need fresh management that can make quick and hard decisions and move this company in right direction. I am waiting for the news of multiple lay offs and store closures blaming economy, slow sales, everything else other than themselves soon.

  2. “Among both millenials and millenials…” – did you perhaps mean “Among both gen-X-ers and millenials…”, or “Among both boomers and millenials…”, or..?

  3. Hope they can keep their “middle market” act together, they make the quality and service we indies provide look even better in comparison…plus they are the defacto anchors of what remains of a lot of malls, all those corner spots going dark would hurt the rest of the tenants.

  4. Signet needs to pay sales associates according to ability of sales. Expectations don’t meet the level of pay. All of the associates with good selling skills and sales ability have moved on to higher paying jobs. Very little experience is on the floor with expectations not being met. Quality work comes with a price tag!

  5. Ha ha ha. Signet’s CEO is one of the 6 blind men of an
    Indian fable!

    Americans are facing the reality of the rich is richer and the poor is poorer.

    She looks at the rich and forgets the poor. She is correct in her corner but
    she is failure the whole elephant!

    “And so these men of Indostan

    Disputed loud and long,

    Each of his own opinion

    Exceeding stiff and strong,

    Though each was partly in the right!

    And all were in the wrong!

    So oft in theologic wars,

    The disputants, I ween,

    Rail on in utter ignorance

    Of what each other mean,

    And prate about an Elephant,

    Not one of them has seen!”

    —-by John Godfrey Saxe (1816-1887)

    Good luck to target to 99.9% of the rich and forget the poor!

    My belief is a gift is the gift, I am welcome all. I do not need to be expensive
    but the thought and the frequency of thinking of each other is more important.
    Please come to see me.

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