How Retailers Can Cash in on Estate Jewelry

Whether you call them vintage, estate, or period, secondhand jewels ­constitute one of the fastest-growing profit ­centers for retailers. How does a newbie capitalize on this exceedingly pretty, parallel world?The saying that “everything old is new again” couldn’t be more apt when it comes to the jewelry market. National brands like Zales and Ross-Simons are now hawking secondhand items online, and pre-owned has become as much a buzzword of the recent recession as subprime or bailout.“The estate business has really evolved in the last two to three years, with people looking for true values,” says Sid Potts, owner of Sid Potts Inc. in Shreveport, La. In the past 15 years, Potts says estate pieces have gone from less than 5 percent to 25 percent of his sales. There are several reasons behind such substantial growth: The meteoric rise in the price of gold combined with a poor ec

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