Flower Power

We often think our industry is so different from others that it's governed by a special set of rules. Our products are labor intensive, highly personal, appeal to deep emotions, and possess high intrinsic value. Taking these factors together, we do have a unique business. But when considering how gems and jewelry get distributed via different channels, we can safely say there are many sets of rules. A top-quality luxury retailer sources goods differently than a mass-market chain. When I chat with people in either segment, it's clear that each has little idea of what the other does. If we look at the market as a two-tier one, other trends begin to make sense, which I will come to shortly. This is a view I have held for years, but I recently saw a similar dichotomy in another industry that has three of the four attributes of jewelry listed above: flowers. On entering a restaurant with

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