Rapaport Magazine

Retail Scope

Gift Cards: Season’s Hot Gift

The National Retail Federation’s (NRF) 2012 holiday spending survey, conducted by BIGinsight, showed that 81 percent of shoppers will purchase at least one gift card and will spend an average of $156.86 on gift cards, the highest amount in the survey’s ten-year history. NRF estimated that total spending on gift cards will reach $28.79 billion.
   As in previous years, men plan to spend significantly more on gift cards than women, with an average of $172.98 versus an average of $141.66 spent by women. Approximately 11 percent of consumers will buy gift cards for an online merchant, while 39 percent indicated they would buy department store gift cards.
   Based on the survey of over 9,300 consumers, the NRF reported that 60 percent of those polled said they would like to receive gift cards this year, up from 58 percent last year.
   More than one in five gift givers say they will buy gift cards because they are easier and faster than traditional gifts and 45 percent noted that gift cards allowed the recipient to select their own gift.
   Matthew Shay, NRF president and CEO, noted that retailers are pulling out all the stops this year to make their gift cards personal, convenient and desirable.

Video Views Drop But Ads Surge
Digital marketing firm comScore Inc. reported that the number of U.S. internet users who watched video content actually dropped .9 percent year on year in October to 183 million and the number of videos viewed online fell nearly 13 percent to 37.2 billion. However, the number of viewing minutes per viewer fell by only 1 percent to 1,254.4 or about
21 hours.

   Nonetheless, the number of video advertisements in October surged 46 percent to
10.9 billion, while total ad minutes jumped 19 percent to 3.8 million minutes. The frequency of ads per viewer surged to 68.2 from 46.9 one year ago.

   Google video properties, which includes YouTube, maintained its dominance as the top video content provider in October by attracting 153.2 million unique viewers. Yahoo! properties was in second place attracting 55.3 million viewers, followed by NDN, VEVO, AOL, Facebook, Viacom, Microsoft properties, CBS Interactive and Grab Media.

Investcorp Acquires Georg Jensen
Investcorp acquired Georg Jensen, the Danish jeweler, for $140 million. The Bahrain-based investment bank explained it intends to help the retailer expand across Asia and become a global brand.
   Under the investment deal, David Chu, founder of Nautica, was appointed chief creative director and cochairman of the board. Guy Leymarie, the former CEO of De Beers Diamond Jewellers, Cartier International and Dunhill, will also join the board. Ulrik Garde Due, the current CEO of Georg Jensen, will continue to lead the management team as he has since 2007.

Shaquille O’Neal for Zales
Zale Corporation partnered with NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal on a new, exclusive collection of men’s jewelry. The Shaquille O’Neal Collection is available in select Zale’s stores and online.
   According to Theo Killion, Zale’s CEO, the product is an expression of O’Neal’s
fun-loving personality and his unique sense of style. The line features men’s pendants, rings and bracelets in primarily stainless steel, with onyx and rubber at price points mostly below $600.

Forevermark Expands in India
Forevermark expanded its distribution in India through new partnerships in Ahmedabad and Vadodara in Gujarat state. The company stated that it partnered with Arvindbhai Bechardas Jewellers, Arunbhai Maneklal Jhaveri & Sons and Kabra Jewels Private Ltd. in Ahmedabad and Damodardas Jewellers and Narayan Jewellers in Vadodara.

Charriol USA Teams with Paramount
Charriol USA has partnered with Paramount Pictures this holiday season for a consumer marketing campaign supporting the studio’s upcoming release of Cirque du Soliel: Worlds Away 3D. Charriol USA will offer a gift with purchase opportunity exclusively at
50 select independent fine jewelry retailers nationwide from now through December 31. With any Charriol USA purchase made during the promotion, customers will receive two free tickets to the film.

   Charriol USA will also offer a drawing at participating independent retailers. The grand prize will include a $2,000 Charriol USA shopping spree at that retailer, film-themed prizes and a private screening of the film in their hometown. Four runners-up will receive a Charriol USA Le Cirque bangle valued at $495 and a Cirque du Soliel: Worlds Away 3D film-themed gift.
   Paramount Pictures noted that the entire promotion is supported by magazine and television advertisements featuring art from the film alongside the Charriol USA product.

Steve Padis Partners With Ritani
Steve Padis Jewelry of San Francisco partnered with Ritani to integrate the retailer’s online and in store purchase experience. Ritani recently launched its unified click-and-brick solution for retail partners in the U.S.
   With this new partnership, engagement ring shoppers in the Bay Area can order directly online from Ritani.com or reserve engagement rings and loose diamonds to be seen at Steve Padis Jewelry’s Utah Street location at The San Francisco Jewelry Center. While under no obligation to buy the reserved stones, consumers can enjoy a more personal and enhanced buying experience.

JIC Creates Facebook Sweepstakes
Belinda Shaw was the winner of a $500 gift card in the Jewelry Information Center’s (JIC) “A Little Bit of Bling” Facebook sweepstakes. The card is redeemable at any Jewelers of America (JA) store. Shaw will use her gift card at Meyers Jewelers in Grove City, Ohio.
   The sweepstakes, sponsored by Perfect Circle Jewelry Insurance from Jewelers Mutual Insurance Company, required entrants to like the JIC Facebook page. The winner was selected in a random drawing.

LKI Sponsors PreHoliday Contest
Lazare Kaplan International Inc. (LKI) sponsored a preholiday contest with Lazare retailers around the world offering consumers a chance to win a Lazare Diamond pendant.
   Consumers were asked to explain the characteristics of an ideal-cut Lazare Diamond
and to write an essay describing when they knew their wife, husband, girlfriend or boyfriend was the one for them. One winner was selected by each of the participating Lazare retailers.

Article from the Rapaport Magazine - December 2012. To subscribe click here.

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