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2021 marks a new era for Damas



Luc Perramond, the chairman of Damas, talks to The Retail Jeweller World about the changes that his company is bringing in to adapt to the new world and work culture after the pandemic

1) 2021 is the beginning of a new decade. What is your vision for your organization and the overall jewellery industry of the region?

2021 marks the start of a new era for Damas. We have introduced a new vision and strategy behind the soon-to-be-unveiled ‘New Damas’. The complete re-invention of Damas will transform the brand through innovation and disruption at all levels of the organization, starting from retail and product development to communication. This evolution will allow Damas to strengthen our regional position within the industry as the leading house of jewellery design’ in the Middle East.

2) What has the pandemic taught the jewellery industry?

Among the many things that the challenging year taught us, the most important is that it is imperative to be a customer-centric business and continuously find new ways to engage with clients through innovation and creativity.

When times become unpredictable, it is crucial to be reactive, adaptable and prepared to reinvent yourself to reflect the new times. We must forget what worked in the past and refocus our efforts into innovative ways to thrive in a new climate.
Building strong relationships with clients must be at the forefront of the retail culture, moving away from the existing one that focused on a more ‘transactional’ approach.
Being committed to investing in the learning and development of your workforce is strategic in helping teams adapt to new challenges and customer behaviour.
Another important learning is, “cash is king”. It is crucial to manage cash with caution and focus on productivity-driven initiatives.

3. What products have done well in the UAE/ region this year in terms of gold, diamonds, coloured gemstones, platinum, or any other trends?

As a result of the economic repercussions brought about by Covid-19, gold prices spiked and the demand decreased. Instead, clients moved towards unique diamond jewellery, along with coloured-gemstones, which were modern in design and wearable daily. Additionally, the demand grew for more exclusive and original designs, which showcased exceptional quality of craftsmanship.

4) How do you see the post-pandemic and current scenario in retail?

We see a strong recovery in the second half of 2021, with an acceleration in quarter 4, due to the vaccination campaigns across the GCC and the momentum from Expo 2020 in Dubai.

Pre-pandemic levels should be reached in 2022, but only for players who have shown an ability to adapt to a new environment and embrace a customer-centric philosophy.

5) How has digital media and echnology helped in the jewellery business, and what more would you like to see?

As a whole, the jewellery industry has been a late adopter of digital technology. However, today it is impossible to ignore the importance of digital media and its significant impact on our business.

Damas has accelerated its digital transformation, investing significantly in various domains, including social media marketing platforms and a revamp of the e-commerce website, recently enhanced with CX. In line with the strategy of digitalization and in support of PR efforts, Damas has collaborated with a number of pioneer women and top influential figures in the UAE, including Karen Wazen, Jessica Kahawaty and Mahira Abdel Aziz, to enhance the digital visibility on social media platforms and encourage customer engagement. The objective is to have successfully implemented a full omni-channel approach in 2021.

Courtesy: Retail Jeweller World News

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