7 March 2005
Hong Kong International Jewellery Show 2005(HKTDC Watch & Clock, Vol 02,2005)
Glamour And Glitz
The fastest-growing jewellery show in the Asian region will shine even brighter this year. The Hong Kong International Jewellery Show 2005, to be held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre from March 1-4, 2005, is on track to break last year's record attendance figures, according to a spokesman for the organiser, the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (TDC).
"More than 1,400 exhibitors from 36 countries and regions will participate in this year's show, compared to the 1,380 exhibitors from 34 countries and regions who attended last year's event," TDC senior exhibitions manager Anne Chick reveals.
She expects the number of buyers to rise correspondingly, noting that last year's attendance of 24,912 buyers from 111 countries and regions represented 24% overall growth from the previous year.
"There was an especially significant rise last year in buyers from the Chinese mainland, whose numbers grew by 55%, and Europe, whose attendance was up 41% on 2003," Chick observes.
"We are confident that both these regions will again fuel visitor numbers as the Chinese mainland economy has been performing very strongly, while the euro has appreciated steadily over the past 12 months."
Many buyers will be coming to see the more than 760 exhibitors from Hong Kong, which, according to the latest TDC statistics, enjoyed a 20% surge in total exports of precious jewellery to almost US$2.4bn from January-November 2004.
Chick expects growth in jewellery sales from the show to continue to rise as a result of the wide range of exhibits and attractions the TDC has included in this year's event.
"We have built upon the highly successful 2004 initiatives, such as the first Japan Jewellery Association Pavilion and the Platinum Pavilion," Chick explains.
"One of our major innovations this year is Les Salons Priv廥, an area ideally located next to Hall 1 that will offer both privacy and convenience for fine jewellery exhibitors to meet with invited buyers."
Other highlights this year will again include Le Salon Extraordinaire, which debuted last year with 12 companies displaying the most glamorous jewellery available.
"This dedicated area for distinctive high-end, premium and luxury jewellery proved a runaway success last year and should prove equally popular this year as it has attracted 22 exhibitors," Chick reveals.
The sixth Designer Jewellery Galleria is expected to be an equally strong drawcard, with participants from leading international jewellery centres such as Hong Kong, France, Israel, Japan, Korea, Monaco, the Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand and the US.
"There will be more than 40 exhibitors in the Designer Jewellery Galleria, which, together with Le Salon Extraordinaire, will provide a one-stop showcase of the very best jewellery designs, concepts and pieces the world has to offer," claims Chick.
She notes that pearls and gems are also becoming increasingly popular as ornaments for apparel, bags and shoes. "The World of Pearl and Gem will feature more than 400 exhibitors showing a wide range of pearls, loose diamonds and gemstones."
This extensive selection of attractions represents Hong Kong's unique ability to pioneer and spotlight the very latest product trends in the international jewellery sector.
A recent TDC jewellery industry report notes that while white jewellery will remain mainstream, there has been renewed demand for coloured-stone jewellery and demand for yellow gold is on the rise again.
"This will contribute to increased demand for elegant and romantic diamonds, while semiprecious stones and coloured crystals targeting the medium- to lower-end segment are also likely to prove strong sellers at this year's show," Chick predicts.
As the world's third-largest exporter of fine jewellery and the largest exporter of imitation jewellery, Hong Kong is particularly well-placed to capitalise on these trends.
Harmony World Watch Centre president Lu Bing Qiang notes that shoppers at his nationwide Chinese mainland retail chain reflect the changing tastes that he believes the Hong Kong International Jewellery Show helps to satisfy.
"Mainland consumers are today more receptive to different jewellery, such as white gold, platinum and diamond," Lu believes. "I think the Hong Kong International Jewellery Show provides ample opportunity for me to explore potential suppliers here, as well as keeping myself abreast of the latest trends in jewellery."
Buyers such as Lu also appreciate that the Hong Kong International Jewellery Show provides an excellent opportunity to catch up on the very latest market intelligence via seminars and overseas delegations.
"We will be staging a range of seminars on industry trends and market developments at this year's show," Chick explains. "Overseas delegations include Belgium, the Chinese mainland, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, the US and newcomer Dubai."
Special pavilions will be hosted by the International Colored Gemstone Association, Japan Jewellery Association, Japan Jewellery Designers Association and the Platinum Guild International, which will stage a Platinum Pavilion.
A number of side events will be held concurrently with the fair, including:
As a result of this extensive range of innovations and proven successes from past years, Chick is confident that this year's fair will set new standards in attendance, sales and customer satisfaction.
"We believe that this year's attractions will prove irresistible to exhibitors and to buyers determined to source the best jewellery lines at the very best prices, ensuring that the Hong Kong International Jewellery Show 2005 will again be one of the major highlights of the global jewellery fair calendar," Chick concludes.
WRITTEN BY SANDRA JENNER
The Watch & Clock Pavilion will again be a special highlight of the Hong Kong International Jewellery Show 2005. First staged in 2003, the Watch & Clock Pavilion has gone from strength to strength, enthuses TDC senior exhibitions manager Anne Chick.
"We have some 49 exhibitors in the Watch & Clock Pavilion," she reveals. "The combination of watches and clocks and quality jewellery is a natural fit and a potent combination for buyers, many of whom deal in both these complementary product lines."
The presence of overseas buyers was especially impressive in 2004, rising 27% from the previous year, and Chick expects the upward trend to continue this year.
"The pavilion has been divided into two sections - brand name watches and clocks, and complete watches and clocks - to provide a one-stop-shop exhibition for all timepiece buyers," she notes.
"This makes it so much easier for buyers to source everything they want in one convenient location, undoubtedly encouraging more buyers to attend."
Hong Kong's acknowledged position as one of the world's leading watch manufacturers also attracts many buyers, who appreciate the territory's commitment to producing stylish, quality timepieces at highly competitive prices.
Hong Kong's watch industry exports increased 10% in the first eleven months of 2004 to reach US$5.4bn, with the EU and the US together accounting for almost half of the total.
Buyers from these regions in particular will doubtless visit the Watch & Clock Pavilion to source the latest products. A recent TDC industry report notes that timepieces have now become important fashion items, with consumers often buying inexpensive fashion watches in different designs to match the season's clothing trends.
Typical of the companies who will participate in the Watch & Clock Pavilion is Renley Watch Mfg Co Ltd, which is showcasing its new Temporis brand of low- to medium-priced quartz watches. "These are fashion-oriented lines for people in their 20s and 30s," says assistant marketing manager Patrick Lo.
As an exhibitor at the fair for more than five years, the company expects business to improve this year. "We plan to meet regular customers and we hope to find new ones," says Lo.
Sterling silver and coloured enamel watches will be among the jewellery-oriented lines shown by OEM/ODM manufacturer Peace Mark Ltd, which is exhibiting at the fair for the second time. "We had a good reaction at the fair last year so we wanted to join again," says marketing manager Gary Chan.
Meanwhile, Chung Nam Watch Co Ltd is launching a new line of Chinese-themed watches with stainless steel or brass cases at the Hong Kong International Jewellery Show 2005.
"They have classic designs but with Chinese characters or symbols on the dial," says sales manager Stephen Wong. "We want to appeal to teenagers and up."
Which is exactly what every exhibitor will be eagerly anticipating at this year's event, as they seek to make new contacts at Asia's leading jewellery show.
WRITTEN BY SANDRA JENNER