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Harry Winston, Tiffany, Cartier Sweep Luxury Ranks

Feb 7, 2006 9:33 PM   By Jeff Miller
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(Rapaport...February 7, 2006) The Luxury Institute in New York surveyed luxury consumers for top choice across 23 jewelry brands. Harry Winston took top spot by those the Luxury Institute calls "penta-millionaires."

Harry Winston earned No.1 for "superior quality, uniqueness and exclusivity,

social status, and the ability of each brand to make customers feel special

throughout the entire customer experience," the report concludes.

Tiffany & Co., and the Cartier brand tied for second place and Mikimoto ranked No.3.

Of the four component measures of the survey, Harry Winston's margin over other jewelry brands is highest for the dimension of the jeweler's ability to make its customers feel special across the entire experience.

"In addition to the consumer ratings, the survey delivers two major insights," said Milton Pedraza, CEO, the Luxury Institute. "One; that the luxury jewelry customer experience is the greatest differentiator for wealthy consumers. Second, in a world full of conflicts of interest, wealthy consumers trust and rely upon transparent peer reviews when shopping luxury goods and services."

Twenty-three brands were rated, including (alphabetical order): Asprey, Bailey,

Banks and Biddle, Blue Nile, Boucheron, Buccellati, Bulgari, Carrera & Carrera,

Cartier, Chanel, Chopard, David Yurman, De Beers, Dior, Graff, Gucci, H Stern, Harry Winston, Jacob & Co., Mikimoto, Piaget, Tiffany, Van Cleef and Arpel, and Zales was included for comparative purposes.

The proprietary Luxury Brand Status Index incorporates four main "pillars" of value: consistently superior quality, uniqueness and exclusivity, a measure of enhanced social status, and a measure of the ability of a brand to make a customer "feel special."

In addition to individual and composite metrics by age, gender, income and net worth segments among the wealthy, the survey measures a brand's ability to merit a significant premium price and the correlation of price premium worthiness with the composite index of the four critical factors. Another critical metric of the research is a rating by wealthy consumers as to the brand's erosion or enhancement during the past year.

The Luxury Institute surveyed a representative sample of more than 400 households with a minimum of $200,000 gross annual household income and minimum household net worth of $5 million (including home equity.) Brands rated were selected with the assistance of industry experts.

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Tags: Banks, Bulgari, Consumers, De Beers, Graff, Harry Winston, Jewelry, Tiffany
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