Jewellery & Watch Birmingham opens for business

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Annual trade exhibition The Jewellery Show, which opens its doors today, has had a rebrand this year, introducing watches to its title for the first time.

The new name of the show, which is organised by i2i Events and can be found within Spring Fair at the NEC from today until February 6, is Jewellery & Watch Birmingham. The name change was driven, according to i2i portfolio director Julie Driscoll, by increased sales of watches at jewellery retailers.

“The last five years has seen a 17% growth in watches, culminating with the watch sector taking 28% share of the total market in 2012,” says Driscoll. “According to keynote the market is set to grow further within the next four years. It makes sense for us to respond to this trend and to provide the market with a directional trade show at a time of year which suits the market.”

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The name change brings with it a 30% year on year increase in watch exhibitors at the show, and Driscoll says that there are plans afoot to increase this further by next year. These 2015 plans will be unveiled at the exhibition next month.

The watch brands at Jewellery & Watch Birmingham will be grouped together in a section simply entitled Watch, which will host more than 60, mostly fashion, watch brands.

Driscoll says that she expects an increase in visitor numbers to the show this year, for both jewellery and watch buyers. The show has executed a targeted marketing plan that as well as speaking to watch retailers has targeted retailers that currently only deal in jewellery.

“We have highlighted to traditionally jewellery-only retailers the importance of watches as a growth area of the jewellery market and one which should be embraced in 2014 and beyond,” she states.

Jewellery & Watch Birmingham has also dedicated three seminar slots to topics that will suit buyers new to watches. The talks cover the pre-owned watch market, trends in watch retail, and a panel discussion hosted by WatchPro editor James Buttery at 2pm Wednesday, February 5, to give advice to retailers breaking into the watch market for the first time.

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