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10 Years Ago in Jeweller: September 2008

A snapshot of the industry events that made news headlines in the September 2008 issue of Jeweller.
Website offers online avenue

The story: An Australian company has recently launched a website enabling jewellery designers to sell direct to customers over the internet.

According to a Jewels Australia release, is “Australia’s first premier online jewellery store aimed at business executives, celebrities, first-class travellers/tourists and shoppers with incomes above $150,000”.

The site aims to allow designers and retailers to present their jewellery to a global marketplace in a manner that is cost-effective.

Pandora opens Perth store

The story: Pandora jewellery has recently opened its second Australian flagship store – this time in Perth. The store showcases the full range of Pandora jewellery, “offering customers the most luxurious shopping experience in an elegant setting,” read a release from the company.

Store manager Angela Milias said she has been “delighted by the response Pandora has received by the general public”.

According to Pandora retail operations manager, Penelope White, the opening of the newest flagship store in Perth is the latest step in the national expansion of the brand.

The next 12 months will see the roll-out of an enhanced retail network, with customers enjoying even greater access to the sought-after product in both Pandora concept stores and an increased presence in many existing stockists,” she said. 

Congress passes Burmese gem ban

The story: The United States has ceased importation of gemstones from Myanmar under new legalisation passed by the Senate recently.

The Tom Lantos Block Burmese JADE Act addresses a loophole in the current act by banning Burmese gems from reaching the US through third-party countries such as Thailand, where most of the gems are processed. 

The legislation is expected to have a large impact on imports of “Burmese rubies,” as 90 per cent of the world’s rubies originate in Myanmar.

Myanmar’s ruling military junta profits from state-run gemstone auctions but has been in the spotlight for its documented history of human rights violations. The bill was implemented in an attempt to target this regime.”

ACCC fines diamond seller $220,000

The story: Diamond merchant Carrerabenz Diamond Industries has pleaded guilty in the Federal Court, Brisbane to 27 charges laid against the company by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) for misleading consumers in the promotion of a series of diamond sales.

On 9 July 2008, the court heard that the company placed six advertisements in national newspapers promoting diamond sales at exhibition venues in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth between January and March 2003, according to a release from the ACCC.

The advertisements listed each diamond or item of diamond jewellery with a unique stock number, together with a “usual marked price” and a “crazy price”. In each case, the “usual marked price” was substantially higher than the “crazy price” offered to consumers at the sales.

The company admitted the items had not previously been offered for sale in Australia, or offered at the “usual marked price”. The company was fined a total of $220,000.” 





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