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Georgini has joined West End Collection as its first in-house jewellery business
Georgini has joined West End Collection as its first in-house jewellery business

West End Collection expands further; acquires Georgini

After six months of discussions, West End Collection has acquired Georgini. The purchase includes assets and stock, intellectual property and the Georgini name.

While Georgini is West End’s first in-house jewellery brand, the company owns and operates two international watch brands, Rose & Coy and Doxie.

The move marks a further expansion for West End after it acquired the distribution rights to Belgian brand Ice-Watch in February, and German watch and accessories company Paul Hewitt late last year.

Both companies chose to partner with West End based on its established network of infrastructure – something that also appealed to Georgini, which has recently undergone a period of sustained international growth.

John Rose, managing director West End Collection, called the decision a “win-win” for both West End and Georgini founder Gina Schaefer, who will stay on as brand ambassador and head up jewellery design and marketing from Hong Kong.

John Rose, West End Collection general manager
John Rose, West End Collection general manager
“We’re looking to add as much support as we possibly can to the Australian customer base. West End Collection has a large infrastructure.”
John Rose, managing director West End Collection

“Gina is very, very passionate about the Georgini brand and loves bringing her creativity to it,” said Rose. “We’re looking at having six releases per year because Gina is now able to focus on design. It enables us to have exciting seasonal offers for the retailers to keep their range fresh all the time.”

Meanwhile, Schaefer told Georgini stockists that the decision would contribute to a “bigger and brighter future” for the business, with “improved serviceability, efficiency, communication, support and distribution”.

“We look forward to the new opportunities that our partnership will bring and the exciting future that lies ahead,” she added.

Rose echoed that sentiment, telling Jeweller, “We’re looking to add as much support as we possibly can to the Australian customer base. West End Collection has a large infrastructure, with staff out on the road, head office support through marketing, and also through our warehousing facilities.”

While Australia is still Georgini’s strongest market, with 335 stockists, it has rapidly expanded over the past few years. The brand is now distributed in New Zealand, the UK, and South Africa – its second-largest market.

Rose praised Georgini’s “very strong” presence in South Africa, where it counts leading department store Edgars as well as high-end jewellers among its retailers.

However, he stressed there was room for improvement in the UK, where Georgini is currently without a distributor.

“It needs more expansion and there’s a lot of opportunity there,” said Rose. “Their previous distributor didn’t really develop the market as much as they could have. Georgini had a great reception and a strong response from retailers when they exhibited at the London Jewellery Fair.

“However, the UK is a bigger and tougher market so you have to have brand managers there to oversee each brand individually, which didn’t happen. So Georgini didn’t quite get the traction it needed.”

Rose added that finding a new UK distributor would be West End’s priority, saying, “We’re going to be looking at all the overseas markets and we have a lot of contacts at the biggest distributors.”











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Friday, 23 August, 2019 07:55pm
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