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Independent Jewellers Collective has surpassed its membership goal for 2020, with 50 stores. Image: IJC campaign
Independent Jewellers Collective has surpassed its membership goal for 2020, with 50 stores. Image: IJC campaign

New buying group reaches another membership milestone

Australia’s newest jewellery industry buying group, Independent Jewellers Collective (IJC), has built its membership to 50 stores, as of mid-September, surpassing its target for the year.

IJC was formed in January 2020 and launched just as the COVID-19 pandemic began to impact the Australian market.

Josh Zarb, Independent Jewellers Collective
Josh Zarb, Independent Jewellers Collective
"We are here for the marathon, not the sprint so we value the close working relationships we have with all of our member stores"
Josh Zarb, Independent Jewellers Collective

Its business model promised to give independent retailers more flexibility than a traditional buying group, with a focus on custom-built digital platforms and “boutique” service.

Josh Zarb, CEO IJC, told Jeweller, “We have been so humbled by interest in our group. It is genuinely exciting to have been able to build such a tight community of retailers and supply partners so quickly. We had set ourselves a target to be at 50 stores by the end of June 2021 and obviously, we are well ahead of this timeline.”

Zarb said the main driver of membership with IJC was the “sense of community” and the experience of the IJC team within the jewellery industry.

“Retailers are looking for modern marketing initiatives and a more upmarket look and feel in external advertising, and this is something we are supporting in all our campaigns. Our business model is simple, it is transparent, and ensures we give our retail partners something back for supporting IJC,” he explained, adding, “Our technology, our simplicity of communication, and our bespoke platforms are some of our biggest strengths.”

Zarb said more than 114 stores had approached IJC to enquire about its services.

“It is important for us and our existing members to continue to add proactive retailers that want to learn from each other and share with each other. We are here for the marathon, not the sprint so we value the close working relationships we have with all of our member stores,” he explained.

IJC also recently held a two-hour Zoom session for suppliers, which was “well received” and will be conducted regularly in the future.

“We set this buying group up with equal importance placed on our suppliers and retailers,” said Zarb, adding, “We used this Zoom session to present our IJC point of difference and delivered a wealth of information on current retail trends and opportunities, as well as providing numerous ways in which IJC can support suppliers in this changed [post-COVID] environment.”

Ahead of the busy holiday shopping season, Zarb said IJC would continue to offer “hands-on support and expertise” as well as an exciting Christmas promotion.

 

More reading:
New buying group reaches membership goal
Independent Jewellers Collective | 2020 Buying Groups Report
New jewellery buying group formed


Independent Jewellers Collective (IJC)
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