Chalhoub Group expands watch and jewelry business – WWD

DUBAI- The Chalhoub Group has signed a partnership with the French jewelry brand Korloff to relaunch its commercial presence in the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain. They plan to have five stores in the area.

It’s the first step in a new growth strategy for the company, which recently added watches, jewelry and eyewear as a key new vertical.

Michael Chalhoub, President of Joint Ventures and Chalhoub Group Strategy, Growth, Innovation and Investment, highlighted the importance of this new pillar within the business. The Chalhoub Group underwent a restructuring a year and a half ago with Michael, the third generation in the family business, leading growth and investment. He said they have a three-year strategy called “Bold,” which is to expand into new categories where they can be market leaders.

“We’ve always catered to all of our customers’ fashion needs and now we’re looking for new categories that will get them excited. Fine jewelry wasn’t particularly on our radar in previous decades. Today, it has become very strategic for the group. It’s not just a tactic. We have developed a new vertical where we aim to become market leaders.

In a personal luxury market report released earlier this year by the Chalhoub Group’s research division, the fine jewelry and luxury watch segment in the Gulf countries was worth $3.9 billion in 2021, in jumping 16% since 2019. Estimates indicate that the segment will grow another 8% by next year.

Bassam Azakir, managing director of Korloff, said the Middle East accounts for 25% of the company’s revenue and is a unique market in which they operate. “It’s a single market, with a strong [per capita] consumption in our category. A consumer will buy four watches a year here in the Middle East, whereas in France this customer will buy only once every five years. The jewelry business is a second-hand business in Europe. Here, it is for the pleasure of the customer.

He added that they also had a different marketing approach. “In fine jewelry, an influencer usually doesn’t convert, but in the Middle East there are young people with disposable income, so the approach is different.”

The addition of Korloff to the jewelry division is a first step for the group, which has also had a partnership with Chaumet for many years in the Middle East, which they will continue to develop.

And after? “We have already been fortunate to have a strong partnership and ties with the LVMH Group and its portfolio brands,” Chalhoub said, hinting at a natural course of growth to attract more watch and jewelry brands into the market. the region.