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JAA executive director Amanda Hunter has resigned from her position
JAA executive director Amanda Hunter has resigned from her position
 










Amanda Hunter resigns; 2017 JAA Jewellery Tradeshow cancelled

The Jewellers Association of Australia (JAA) has announced the resignation of its executive director, Amanda Hunter, and the cancellation of the 2017 JAA Jewellery Tradeshow.

According to a media release, dated 8 May and signed by ‘The JAA Board’, Hunter submitted a request to step down from her position.

“The unfortunate reality is that Amanda has been subjected to relentless and unsubstantiated personal attacks on her professional capacity that have impacted on her health,” the statement read.

“The JAA board therefore finds itself in a position where it must protect the welfare of its employees by accepting her resignation from the executive director role.”

The release also stated that the 2017 JAA Jewellery Tradeshow – scheduled to take place on the same dates and in the same city as the Expertise Events’ International Jewellery Fair (IJF) and of which Hunter spearheaded – had been cancelled.

According to the statement, “certain important industry members” have “now” expressed concern about the feasibility of running two Sydney-based trade fairs.

It was unclear who these industry members were; however, on 28 April Showcase Jewellers announced that it would no longer “exclusively” support the JAA event and would instead support the IJF at the new International Convention Centre at Darling Harbour.

Amanda Hunter, former JAA executive director
Amanda Hunter, former JAA executive director

A few days later, on 3 May, Australia’s three buying groups, Leading Edge Group Jewellers, Nationwide Jewellers and Showcase Jewellers, released a joint statement that called for industry unity by asking “all” retailers and suppliers to support the IJF in 2017.

This latest news comes after the JAA ended a 25-year relationship with Expertise Events in May 2016; the JAA was a financial beneficiary of the IJF, which was reportedly valued at more than $100,000 per year.

Background reading: Long road ahead for JAA

The board’s most recent announcement suggested there was a possibility that the JAA would attempt to hold its own trade show in the future.

“Given that the JAA is an association for its members, it is essential for the board to always have regard to the opinion of those members,” the statement read.

“For this reason the board has taken into account the wishes of the industry and must announce that it will not be running a tradeshow this year but will defer the event until such time that the industry sees fit.”

Further clarifications

The JAA media release also acknowledged that the cancellation of the JAA Jewellery Tradeshow had contradicted a report published in industry magazine Jewellery World.

“This is a very recent decision and has been made after a current Jewellery World article indicating that the tradeshow would be proceeding,” it read. “The board apologises for any confusion resulting from the conflicting information but the Jewellery World article could not be withdrawn prior to this announcement due to publishing timelines.”

Print deadlines aside, the confusion was further complicated because last Tuesday, 2 May, the JAA issued an industry announcement advising that it was relocating its trade show from Moore Park to Darling Harbour.

“This change comes after input given to the JAA that Darling Harbour is the best location to host the inaugural industry run trade event,” JAA president Selwyn Brandt stated only one week ago. 

The latest media release cancelling the event confirmed that the 2017 JAA Australasian Jewellery Awards program would still be held.

“The JAA is continuing with its strong JAA Jewellery Awards program that has received over 150 expressions of interest from individuals planning to enter already,” it stated.

The release noted that the board was currently in discussions with Hunter with a “view to retaining her expertise in other roles within the JAA”.

Hunter commenced in her role as JAA executive director on 23 June 2014.

More reading
Buying groups call for unity: urge industry to support one jewellery fair
Another JAA board member resigns
Showcase pledges support for Expertise Events jewellery fair
Nationwide, Leading Edge make 2017 jewellery fair decision
Sydney jewellery fair organiser hits back at JAA
More industry division over two jewellery fairs
JAA appoints new executive director



















Wednesday, 15 August, 2018 03:43pm
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