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JIN’s misleading brochure which resulted in a 14-month legal dispute ending in the Federal Court. It clearly makes the claim that in May 2022 the Jewellery Industry Fair Instagram account had 6,776 followers - as of today it only has 2,429.
JIN’s misleading brochure which resulted in a 14-month legal dispute ending in the Federal Court. It clearly makes the claim that in May 2022 the Jewellery Industry Fair Instagram account had 6,776 followers - as of today it only has 2,429.

Blast from the past: More questions raised about Jewellery Industry Network

Further details have emerged concerning a puzzling email circulating within the industry, initially distributed by the Jewellery Industry Fair (JIF) organiser Laura Moore.

As previously reported, Jeweller was provided with copies of the email signed by Moore as managing director of Jewellery Industry Network, which addressed false and misleading claims published in a brochure promoting the Sydney jewellery fair.

The brochure was distributed in May 2022, and it wasn’t long before JIN’s management found itself in the Federal Court defending marketing and advertising statements about its event. 

Jeweller has now obtained access to Federal Court documents - including JIN’s Concise Statement of Response - filed on 22 December last year.

Under the heading ‘JIN did not engage in misleading or deceptive conduct’, the document details four issues:

1. JIN never having previously conducted a trade show in Sydney
2. Testimonials from visitors to the fair
3. The listenership of The Jewellers Podcast
4. The representation of buying groups at the fair

The document was prepared in response to claims that JIN’s marketing and promotions were misleading or deceptive.

“The brochure itself does not contain representations that, considered as a whole, give the impression that the Sydney Fair has an established track record,” JIN stated in defence of the brochure. 

“Given the content of the brochure in its proper context as set out above, JIN did not engage in misleading or to conduct contrary to the statute.”

The document concludes: “The relief sought in the original application should be refused with costs.”

Out-of-court settlement

The fact that Moore issued the clarification email six months later would suggest the judge denied JIN’s request for the Application to be refused and ruled that the case would proceed.

In December 2022 Moore’s court documents stated, “The brochure itself does not contain representations that … give the impression that the Sydney Fair has an established track record”; however, last month she issued a corrective industry email.
In December 2022 Moore’s court documents stated, “The brochure itself does not contain representations that … give the impression that the Sydney Fair has an established track record”; however, last month she issued a corrective industry email.

As previously reported, The Commonwealth Courts Portal records the Federal Court hearing as ‘Finalised - Dismissed By Consent’ on 19 July.

When legal proceedings are ‘dismissed by consent’, it generally means the matter was ‘settled out-of-court’. This involves a legally binding agreement between parties involved in a dispute which is approved by the court.

Moore's 26 July email was distributed seven days after the Federal Court proceedings were finalised.

This raises an obvious question: If in December 2022, JIN denied that it had engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct, why did Moore issue an industry email six months later clarifying the same matters that her Concise Statement of Response originally denied?

It is worth noting that the problematic brochure was distributed in May of 2022, and the first documents filed with the Federal Court are dated 28 September.

This means the legal dispute – and the associated costs incurred – lasted at least 10 months.

Furthermore, if the ‘out-of-court’ settlement required a ‘corrections’ email by Moore, was JIN required to pay either full or partial costs to the Applicant?

And if costs were involved, what was the amount?

Further questions

The brochure raises additional questions concerning potentially misleading claims by JIN, which were not addressed in Moore’s email. For example, the brochure claimed that JIF’s Instagram account had 6,776 followers - as of today it has only 36 per cent of the figure.
The brochure raises additional questions concerning potentially misleading claims by JIN, which were not addressed in Moore’s email. For example, the brochure claimed that JIF’s Instagram account had 6,776 followers - as of today it has only 36 per cent of the figure.

As previously noted, Jeweller has obtained a copy of the brochure which prompted Moore’s controversial corrections email. 

This brochure - along with the JIF website - raise additional questions concerning potentially misleading and deceptive claims by JIN, which were not addressed in Moore’s email.

For example, the brochure claimed that JIF’s Instagram account had 6,776 followers.

This is a curious statement, given that as of today there are only 2,429 followers of that account.

It should be noted that this figure is more than one year after the brochure was published; therefore, it’s reasonable to assume that in May of 2022, the number of Instagram followers was fewer.

On the other hand, if the 6,776 reference was to JIN’s Instagram page, then this claim appears more dubious.

As of today, that account only has 1,508 followers.

It is clear that neither Instagram account could rightfully claim 6,776 followers in 2022, let alone today.

Indeed, even if the Instagram followers of both accounts (JIN and JIF) were combined at the time, they do not total anywhere near the figure claimed.

The accurate figure would have been 3,937 followers or just 58 per cent of the exaggerated May claim of 6,776.

As reported last week, the brochure also made claims about a business hosted by Moore and former JIN director Brett Low - The Jewellers Podcast – suggesting it had 60,000 individual listeners.

This claim was incorrect and was one of the four points addressed in Moore’s industry email.

Jeweller has also sought clarification concerning the claim that JIN is 'Australia's largest network of jewellers.'

History repeats

This legal dispute involving false and misleading statements is not the first time Moore has been a central figure in a high-profile industry legal dispute.

Between January and October of 2016, Moore (Laura Sawade) was the Jewellers Association of Australia (JAA) vice president. Her involvement with the JAA began as a branch committee member in 2011.

During her time as vice president, the JAA ended a 25-year relationship with Expertise Events.

In doing so, the JAA terminated a lucrative sponsorship deal that saw the association receive hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The JAA announced it was launching its own trade fair, spearheaded by Moore along with then president Selwyn Brandt and executive director Amanda Trotman (nee Amanda Hunter).

In September of 2016, Moore was a signatory to a JAA media release that made potentially defamatory allegations about another board member - Nationwide Jewellers managing director Colin Pocklington.

Laura Moore, Jewellery Industry Network
Laura Moore, Jewellery Industry Network
“Any profits derived from key industry events should be reinvested into the Australia Jewellery Industry through a host of services that can and only will be provided by the JAA.”
Laura Moore, JAA Vice President (2016)

Pocklington had resigned from the board shortly after the JAA announced its fair. 

Following the media release, Pocklington immediately briefed his lawyers and declared that Australasia’s largest buying group, with more than 400 members, would quit the JAA after a continuous 25-year membership.

The JAA subsequently removed the media release from its website; however, the damage was done. 

Some months later, Pocklington issued a comprehensive barrister’s report that refuted 'offensive' allegations made in the JAA’s media statement.

The legal dispute extended to the trade publication Jewellery World, which had published the media release in its entirety. This was later removed under threats of legal action.

As previously reported, the actions of the JAA and Moore created a sharp division in the Australian jewellery industry and a significant decline in membership for the association.

It should be noted that the JAA media statement attacking Pocklington was issued on 29 September 2016 and Moore’s contact details were prominently displayed at the bottom.

This included her phone number and work email address at Peter W Beck. Nationwide Jewellers had a long-standing business relationship with Peter W Beck. 

Moore had worked at Peter W Beck as a marketing manager for nearly a decade; however, 18 days following the JAA media release, she was no longer employed – announcing her departure via email on 21 October.

Jeweller has previously sought clarification from Moore on this matter, asking whether she resigned or was terminated from Peter W Beck. She did not answer.

As Moore was the ‘supplier representative’ on the board, she was forced to stand down from the JAA because of her departure from the industry.

A section of the 2016 JAA Media Statement ‘signed’ by Laura Moore (nee Sawade), Selwyn Brandt and Amanda Trotman (nee Hunter) which said industry events should not “be controlled by private companies”. The JAA is therefore facing a challenge from JIN, “wishing to takeover traditional JAA activities”. Jeweller is unable to publish the entire statement because of its defamatory nature.
A section of the 2016 JAA Media Statement ‘signed’ by Laura Moore (nee Sawade), Selwyn Brandt and Amanda Trotman (nee Hunter) which said industry events should not “be controlled by private companies”. The JAA is therefore facing a challenge from JIN, “wishing to takeover traditional JAA activities”. Jeweller is unable to publish the entire statement because of its defamatory nature.

Contradictions and double standards?

In an attempt to create a new JAA-owned jewellery industry fair, Moore was on record as leading the charge for key industry events to be owned and operated by the JAA - and not by private companies, which she claimed "strip funds from the industry".

In helping to launch the JAA Jewellery Tradeshow, her position was made clear: “The JAA board felt that it would not be in the best interests of the industry as a whole for key industry events to be controlled by private companies which have the objective of maximising their own profits and which are under no obligation to act in the best interests of the jewellery industry,” the media statement read.

"Moore’s Jewellery Industry Network is a privately owned events management company and while the JAA will attend the event as an exhibitor, the association does not own the event."

Moore’s stance and conviction as JAA vice president in 2016 is more baffling today given that the media statement added: “The JAA board also considers that any profits derived from key industry events should be reinvested into the Australia Jewellery Industry through a host of services that can and only will be provided by the JAA.”

“The JAA will not be able to undertake this function if private companies are allowed to strip these funds out of the industry.”

Ironically, prior to the decision in 2016 to end its relationship with Expertise Events, the JAA had long enjoyed a lucrative sponsorship deal that included up to $100,000 in annual cash payments.

Moore’s Jewellery Industry Network is a privately owned events management company and while the JAA will attend her event as an exhibitor, the association does not own the event.

Put another way – the Jewellery Industry Network is a private company that has the objective of maximising its own profits and is under no obligation to act in the best interests of the jewellery industry, a principle on which Moore, Brandt and Trotman had previously staked their reputations and which lead to years of industry division and turmoil.

Jeweller contacted Moore to seek clarification as to why it was wrong for “private companies [to be] allowed to strip funds out of the industry” in 2016 - a board conviction which ultimately led to a near collapse of the JAA - and yet in 2023 her own private company has “the objective of maximising its own profits”.

At the time of publication, she had not responded to a request for comment.

More reading
JAA's fall from grace: 2020 State of the Jewellery Industry Report
Moore moves to correct misleading trade fair statements
Correction: Jewellery Industry Network directors have resigned
Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it
Second resignation from JAA board
JAA’s perfect storm: Nationwide quits association

 











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