Lower Im­port Duty Boosts Chi­nese Pres­ence At Vi­cen­za­Oro

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The lat­est edi­tion of Vi­cen­za­Oro, the in­ter­na­tional gold and jewellery trade show or­gan­ised by the Ital­ian Ex­hi­bi­tion Group (IEG) from Septem­ber 22nd to 26th, con­cluded on an op­ti­mistic note. IEG said for­eign visi­tors ac­counted for more than 40% of the over­all vis­i­tor at­ten­dance, with buy­ers from 117 dif­fer­ent coun­tries at­tend­ing the show.

The to­tal vis­i­tor at­ten­dance re­mains in line with that of the Septem­ber 2017 edi­tion, at over 20,000, de­spite the pe­riod over­lap­ping with Jew­ish fes­tiv­i­ties. IEG said there was a boom in the num­ber of visi­tors from China, which rose by 73% mainly due to the low­er­ing of im­port du­ties, a con­sis­tent 23% growth of visi­tors from the US, while those from the United Arab Emi­rates re­mained sta­ble, as did those from Eu­rope.

Some 1,500 buy­ers were in at­ten­dance, in­clud­ing rep­re­sen­ta­tives from large-scale

Amer­i­can de­part­ment stores and lead­ing Chi­nese and Euro­pean chain stores, as well as over 140 jour­nal­ists, all se­lected in col­lab­o­ra­tion with the min­istry of eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment, through ICE Agen­zia (Ital­ian Trade Agency), in close co­or­di­na­tion with Con­find­us­tria Federorafi.

The or­gan­iser said the sec­tor is start­ing to show pos­i­tive signs, and that Vi­cen­za­Oro con­tin­ues to con­sol­i­date its po­si­tion as the most pres­ti­gious and im­por­tant Euro­pean gold and jewellery show­case.

Join­ing IEG pres­i­dent Lorenzo Cagnoni at the rib­bon-cut­ting cer­e­mony were the In­dian Am­bas­sador to Italy, Reenat Sandhu; the min­is­ter for re­gional af­fairs and au­tonomies, se­na­tor Erika Ste­fani; the vice min­is­ter for eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment, Dario Galli; the pres­i­dent of ICE, Michele Scan­navini; the pres­i­dent of Con­find­us­tria Federorafi, Ivana Ci­a­batti; and the mayor of Vi­cenza, Francesco Rucco.

Vi­cen­za­Oro had over 30 ed­u­ca­tional events open to ex­hibitors and visi­tors alike and nu­mer­ous well-at­tended sem­i­nars for de­bate and fur­ther in­for­ma­tion on the sec­tor. The top­ics of dis­cus­sion in­cluded prod­uct in­no­va­tion, con­sumer modal­i­ties, and the mar­ket trends bound to leave a mark.

The dis­cus­sion on the first day of the show at Vi­sio.Next: Trends, the first round ta­ble at Vi­cen­za­Oro Septem­ber, gath­ered to­gether in­ter­na­tional ex­perts, in­clud­ing top in­flu­encers and lead­ing jewellery com­pa­nies and in­sid­ers.

The show wit­nessed a 52% growth in the num­ber of users on its web­site www.vi­cen­za­oro.com and con­sid­er­able par­tic­i­pa­tion and con­tent shar­ing among blog­gers, in­flu­encers and In­sta­gram­mers. The Dig­i­tal Talks se­ries,

or­gan­ised in col­lab­o­ra­tion with Con­f­com­mer­cio Fed­er­preziosi, also met with enor­mous suc­cess.

The show also hosted 30-minute meet­ings and brain­storm­ing ses­sions on the hottest dig­i­tal in­no­va­tion top­ics specif­i­cally aimed at jewellery and watch re­tail­ers, which saw the in­volve­ment of sec­tor ex­perts, in­clud­ing rep­re­sen­ta­tives from Ama­zon. The Gem Talks meet­ings, or­gan­ised by the Ital­ian Gem­mo­log­i­cal In­sti­tute and spon­sored by CIBJO, Borsa Dia­manti d’Italia, Con­f­com­mer­cio Fed­er­preziosi and As­so­ci­azione Gem­mo­log­ica Ital­iana, were mod­elled in the same way.

Among the new en­tries at this au­tumn edi­tion of the show was T.Evo­lu­tion – Jewellery Ma­chin­ery & Tech­nol­ogy, or­gan­ised in col­lab­o­ra­tion with Cen­tro Pro­dut­tiv­ità Veneto (CPV). The project had an in­no­va­tive ex­hi­bi­tion-train­ing for­mat, specif­i­cally ded­i­cated to jewellery and gold pro­cess­ing and ma­chin­ery, whose core fo­cus was on the dig­i­tal tech­nolo­gies and method­olo­gies that are be­ing in­creas­ingly used in jewellery man­u­fac­tur­ing.

The Watch Room, a sec­tion en­tirely ded­i­cated to watches, hosted the lat­est col­lec­tions and pre­views of 12 in­de­pen­dent brands.

The IEG-man­aged Museo del Gioiello, a mu­seum ded­i­cated ex­clu­sively to jewellery, opened a tem­po­rary ex­hi­bi­tion en­ti­tled “Jewels of Power: Crowns and Tiaras”, un­der the cu­ra­tor­ship of Alessan­dra Pos­samai. The ex­hi­bi­tion will be open to the pub­lic un­til March 17th, 2019.

Fu­ture gaz­ing

Dur­ing this edi­tion of Vi­cen­za­Oro, Paola De Luca, cre­ative di­rec­tor and fore­caster, pre­sented TrendBook 2020+, the pub­li­ca­tion com­piled by Vi­cen­za­Oro’s in­de­pen­dent re­search cen­tre, Trend­vi­sion Jewellery + Fore­cast­ing, that IEG has de­vised to of­fer a glance at the trends that will be in­flu­enc­ing the jewellery world, con­sumer at­ti­tudes and in­ter­na­tional lux­ury mar­ket sit­u­a­tions dur­ing the next 18 months.

“We are cur­rently go­ing through a pe­riod of con­sid­er­able change and rule-break­ing,” ex­plained De Luca. “The stan­dards of beauty are no longer the same. Unique­ness lies in im­per­fec­tion, en­hanced by pride in one’s own di­ver­sity, whether eth­nic, phys­i­cal or cul­tural. There­fore, a ma­ture beauty, no longer linked to age but more to a life­style, tastes and per­sonal val­ues, now has a place in the con­sump­tion sys­tem and is be­ing proudly ex­pressed.”

Brands are re­spond­ing to this trend by cre­at­ing col­lec­tions with items that, rather than be­ing co­or­di­nated and match­ing, can be com­bined ac­cord­ing to in­di­vid­ual taste in a mix and match that breaks the rules of style and leaves the con­sumer to­tally free to ex­press his/her own iden­tity. For ex­am­ple, by wear­ing ear­rings sold sin­gu­larly that go with a toe-ring.

Where ev­ery­thing tends to be glob­alised, the search for roots is start­ing to re-emerge. “One of

the most in­ter­est­ing phe­nom­ena,” con­tin­ued De Luca, “is the re-in­ter­pre­ta­tion of items like the tiara, a his­tor­i­cal trend that has al­ways been as strong and re­as­sur­ing as the past it draws upon, nur­tured by news re­ports on the come­back of royal fam­i­lies, and one that sat­is­fies the fairy­tale de­sire to es­cape re­al­ity.”

The mil­len­ni­als them­selves are chang­ing pur­chas­ing pri­or­i­ties: the per­cep­tion of lux­ury is as­so­ci­ated

to life ex­pe­ri­ences, emo­tions, not to own­ing an ob­ject.

Asia, on the other hand, is pro­duc­ing de­sign­ers and pho­tog­ra­phers able to look at their past with a fu­tur­ist eye who are be­com­ing the mouth­pieces of a cul­tural revo­lu­tion that breaks with the past. And that is no small thing in an age where the world speaks through aes­thetic codes and semi­otic el­e­ments and pho­tog­ra­phy is the global lan­guage.

There­fore, in a global con­text where we are re-writ­ing the rules, there are five mega­trends on which to keep an eye in or­der to find the right di­rec­tion and un­der­stand con­sumer evo­lu­tion in the jewellery world:

SOFT POWER: pride in stand­ing out.

SYBILLE: spir­i­tu­al­ity, mys­ti­cism, ir­ra­tional­ity. In­no­va­tion passes through the wis­dom of na­ture and an aware­ness of an­cient know-how.

RU­RAL VISIONNAIR­E - Na­ture Odyssey. Im­por­tance given to mean­ing and ori­gins. Or­ganic and sus­tain­able, great at­ten­tion to sus­tain­abil­ity.

BA­BEL – The phy­gi­tal. This con­sumer has an ex­tremely open mind and is con­vinced that ev­ery­thing can be re-thought and re-de­fined. He/she lives in the name of sim­plic­ity and min­i­mal­ism, pre­fer­ring a highly ca­sual and func­tional style in or­der to be ex­actly what he/she wants.

AN­OTHER MAN – The dis­rup­tive. A “good” in­di­vid­u­al­ism emerges, one that pays more at­ten­tion to shape and essence rather than ap­pear­ance. In­spi­ra­tion comes from the aes­thet­ics of pu­rity and cel­e­brates au­then­tic­ity and unique­ness. Con­sid­ered as one of the most im­por­tant con­sumer groups over the next five years, it con­sists of men with an open mind who are not afraid of show­ing their own emo­tions.

The mil­len­ni­als them­selves are chang­ing pur­chas­ing pri­or­i­ties: the per­cep­tion of lux­ury is as­so­ci­ated to life ex­pe­ri­ences, emo­tions, not to own­ing an ob­ject. Asia, on the other hand, is pro­duc­ing de­sign­ers and pho­tog­ra­phers able to look at their past with a fu­tur­ist eye who are be­com­ing the mouth­pieces of a cul­tural revo­lu­tion that breaks with the past.

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