Companies in this industry sell jewelry, silverware, watches, and clocks from physical retail establishments. Major US companies include Sterling Jewelers and Zale (both units of Bermuda-based Signet Jewelers), as well as Tiffany; other industry leaders include the retail operations of Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group (China), Richemont (Switzerland), and Swatch (Switzerland).
Demand is driven largely by consumers' disposable income. Profitability depends on merchandising and marketing. Large companies enjoy economies of scale in purchasing. Small jewelers can compete with large chains by establishing favorable reputations. The US industry is fragmented: the 50 largest companies generate about 40% of revenue.
PRODUCTS, OPERATIONS & TECHNOLOGY
Diamond jewelry accounts for the largest share of total jewelry store sales, at about 42%. Watches, watchbands, and parts account for about 15%, gold jewelry for 10%; and colored gemstone jewelry (rubies, sapphires, emeralds, etc.) for 6%.