In the words of Celine Lau, director of the UBM Asia Jewellery Fairs: “It is a complete platform for business”
A fair that is able to adapt to market changes, thanks to thirty years of experience and a flexible and varied offer. Considered the number one event in the sector, the September Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair brings together almost 3,700 exhibitors, ensuring a huge number of increasingly design-conscious proposals for buyers and, at the same time, favourable terms for doing business. Describing the current role of the exhibition and the new directions it intends to take in the short term is Celine Lau, director of UBM Asia Jewellery Fairs.
Which is today the role of the Hong Kong September Fair in the world stage?
As the world’s number one fine jewellery event, the September Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair has the highest participation of key players in the world’s jewellery trade, making the Fair a highly influential one among all other jewellery fairs worldwide.
The September Fair has established itself as the preeminent platform for the industry. Last year, it drew about 60,000 professional jewellery buyers from 157 countries and regions, providing an unique opportunity to 3,695 exhibitors from 49 countries and regions to launch new products, new services and new business concepts, promote their brands and generate business leads from quality visitors.
To visitor, it is no doubt that the Fair is the global marketplace where once can source jewellery, diamonds, pearls, gemstones and every related product imaginable from exhibitors around the world.
With a number of events, such as seminars, conferences and cocktail receptions during the Fair, serve as networking platforms for people to meet, make new contacts, learn from experts, collecting latest market intelligence and explore new opportunities, the September Fair is a comprehensive business-to-business platform for the industry.
Which is now the “health state” of Hong Kong market for jewelry?
Hong Kong’s jewellery industry is much export-oriented for decades. Hong Kong is currently the 6th largest fine jewellery exporter in the world. However, the city’s domestic market has been facilitated by expansion of local consumption, thanks to the influx of tourists in recent years. Per Hong Kong Tourism Board’s announcement, in 2013, overnight visitors spent HK$24.9 billion on jewellery, accounted for almost 20% of their total spending on shopping; as for those from the Chinese mainland, the share was higher at 21.4%. Though the growth of jewellery sales in China has slowed down recently, it is still a large market with great potential. Hong Kong jewellers still keep developing retail networks and strengthen their penetration into the Mainland through trade fairs and other cooperative arrangement.
In addition, Hong Kong’s jewellery industry is known for its flexibility in accommodating customer needs and the excellence in craftsmanship. It provides confidence to buyers with top quality making Hong Kong brands were the first choice, compared with local and foreign brands, of mainland consumers.
Which is the main demand of the jewelry sector towards the fairs? and towards the Hong Kong fairs?
One of the strengths of the September Fair is the diversification of product category. Jewellery buyers could find all they needs in a one-stop sourcing platform.We observed that the demand of jewellery raw materials has maintained on high level in recent years. The September Fair is the best event for buyers to place orders ready for delivery prior to the year-end shopping seasons. At previous June Fairs, active sales of such materials as coloured gemstones, diamonds and pearls. Then the new design will be showcased in the September Fair.
Bridal jewellery section is an exciting new focus at the September Fair 2015. The new attraction will gather one-of-a-kind bridal masterpieces and the classics from esteemed suppliers from around the globe.
How does the Hong Kong market still see the Italian jewel?
Articles of jewellery are getting more fashion oriented. Innovative designs are important for moving up-market. As Italian jewellery is known for its stylish design and high-quality craftsmanship, is much welcomed by the young generation and middle income level market segment. Its timeless design with variety of materials are also the target for high-end collectors.
Which are the next prospectives for the Hong Kong Fair?
We will continue to focus tremendous resources on enriching the fair for the benefits of both exhibitors and buyers. We look for any new elements and new markets that could help the industry to grow substantially.
In 2014, we have expanded the space for the “Designer Arena” by 40 percent to offer more jewellery designers opportunities to gain more exposure and attract more global audience. This year, we will launch a brand new section – Bridal Jewellery to cope with the growing needs among the industry.
With attendance of jewellers from around the world, the Hong Kong Fairs not only an unparalleled networking opportunities, but also a golden chance for business forecasting where upcoming design trends, the hottest colours and the newest materials are presented at the Fairs before they launch to the markets.
By strengthening all kinds of inputs of the Hong Kong Fairs, we believe that the Fairs will remain the most awaited annual jewellery trade events in the world.