Catering to Jewelry-Loving Chinese Shoppers

Armed with newly minted tourist visas, Chinese visitors are coming to America in search of luxury goods. Prepare yourself for the decade’s biggest marketing opportunity.Several years ago, Julie Sather-Browne, vice president of ­Sather’s Leading Jewelers in Fort Collins, Colo., was approached by the manager of a local water-purification consulting firm with a significant presence in China. The executive had a slew of Chinese visitors coming to town who wanted to take back gold and diamond jewelry as souvenirs, and was hoping to arrange a group buying trip to Sather’s.The retailer, however, was reluctant. She assumed—correctly, as it turned out—that the tourists would demand discounts on her already-­discounted merchandise. But she relented, agreeing to work with them on prices.What Sather-Browne learned rather quickly is that while negotiating with Chinese clients could be som

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