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Several high-profile international jewellers will be speaking at this year's Sydney trade fair
Several high-profile international jewellers will be speaking at this year's Sydney trade fair

Sydney jewellery fair lands international big wigs

This year’s Sydney trade fair is set to provide jewellery retailers with sales-boosting advice through an educational program, which includes presentations from a number of high-profile international speakers.

Gary Fitz-Roy, managing director of fair organiser Expertise Events, explained the 2015 International Jewellery Fair (IJF) schedule had been developed based on the theme ‘Discover the next big thing’.

“It’s one of the most exciting line-ups in a decade, with new exhibitors, new brands and new on-the-floor activities,” Fitz-Roy said, adding that there would be around 200 exhibitors at the upcoming event.

“We have also seen an increase in new registration enquiries and it certainly feels like there have been more this year,” he stated.

International speakers

Jesper Nielsen – Endless Jewelry founder Jesper Nielsen will be among the key international speakers featured at the fair, with presentations held at 11:00am on Saturday 29 August and Monday 31 August, and at 1:30pm on Sunday 30 August. Nielsen will draw on his experience as former Pandora CEO of Central Western Europe and founder of new Danish jewellery brand, Endless, to share insights on branding, including how he secured a deal with Jennifer Lopez.

Dennis Sandlau-Jacobsen – Julie Sandlau president Dennis Sandlau-Jacobsen will also be making an appearance this year. Sandlau-Jacobsen and wife Julie established the eponymous Danish jewellery business in 2002, and Sandlau-Jacobsen has additionally designed and produced jewellery ranges for Endless and a number of other brands. His presentation, held at 11:00am on Sunday, will address industry issues such as current trends and relationship building within the sector.

Jimmy Butts – Two-time US Bench Pressure Challenge winner Jimmy Butts will be a guest judge for the inaugural Jewellery Design and Manufacturing Championships (JDMC) and will also run pavé setting masterclasses at 12:00pm on the Saturday and Sunday of the show. In addition to winning the US bench challenge – a competition that inspired the development of the JDMC – in 2013 and 2014, Butts was recently named one of the top four jewellers in the US by industry trade publication Instore.

Back in the spotlight

The Spotlight Learning Exchange program will return in 2015, allowing visitors to hear valuable tips from industry experts right on the fair floor.

The Jewellers Association of Australia (JAA) will host several sessions as part of the fair activities. JAA Code of Conduct chair Colin Pocklington will speak on consumer law and explain how it impacts jewellery store owners, many of whom are unaware of consumer rights. Leasing Information Systems (LIS) managing director Simon Fonteyn will discuss the new national retail tenancy database that LIS has developed with the JAA, and how it aims to improve the Australian jewellery retail leasing market. Glenn Miller will also present on behalf of the JAA, providing retailers with practical strategies for surviving in a digital age.

Other presenters at the Sydney trade fair include Gemmological Association of Australia (GAA) fellow and qualified gemmologist Graham Henry, who will offer visitors an introduction to gemstone inclusions; Debra Templar of The Templar Group, who will share iPhone photography tips and explain how to harness the power of social media; and Peter W Beck marketing manager Laura Sawade, who will explore how to increase wedding ring sales.

Live demonstrations and masterclasses are also expected to add to visitors’ educational experience.

Pallion will hold demonstrations where attendees are invited to learn the secrets of plating, how to string pearls to the correct tensions and observe CAD designers in action.

As previously reported by Jeweller, in addition to running the JDMC, the Young Jewellers Group will host masterclasses at its Jewellers Bench area on the show floor. WA TAFE teacher Peter Keep and Academy of Jewellery Manufacture and Design founder Jacques Fabian are scheduled to perform a range of jewellery manufacturing techniques as part of the initiative on Saturday and Sunday.

A full schedule of the IJF program is available at here.

The IJF will be held from Saturday 29 August to Monday 31 August at Sydney Exhibition Centre @ Glebe Island.

More reading
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