China has been a brilliant spot for FRED for fairly some time, and it noticed a major enhance in gross sales within the French, Italian, and Korean markets.
In 2020, China represented roughly 25 p.c of FRED’s international gross sales, and its enlargement has been very fast.
FRED is likely one of the first LVMH-owned Maisons to have debuted a flagship retailer on Tmall. It serves as a strong on-line buying website but in addition a vibrant info platform that reaches a big youth viewers in China.
There’s a terrific portfolio of highly effective jewellery manufacturers underneath the auspices of LVMH, starting with Bvlgari, Tiffany & Co., and Chaumet. However it all turned a part of LVMH after FRED — the primary jewellery model purchased by the French luxurious group when it grabbed complete shares of the model in 1996. And surprisingly, this common jewellery model managed to realize large momentum in China final 12 months when the pandemic was at its peak.
FRED did good enterprise in 2020 just because its luxurious possession determined to grow to be absolutely concerned in its branding. In truth, the model sailed via the market storm of the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, reaching an astonishing determine of €100 million in gross sales globally.
In an unique interview with Jing Every day, we caught up with Charles Leung, the CEO of FRED Paris, to search out out extra in regards to the model’s historical past, the way it’s catering to the style of younger Chinese language customers, and extra.
Inform us extra about FRED Paris.
With its roots and really feel for the French Riviera spirit, the Home is a daring, visionary jewellery model that has made iconic and top-quality jewels since its founding in 1936. FRED all the time seeks to push the envelope of up to date jewellery.
At this time, the model is represented by its three distinctive collections, every with its personal tales that illustrate FRED’s philosophy and values whereas interesting to both intercourse. They’re the Power 10 buckle, impressed by the ocean and crusing, Probability Infinie, primarily based on the quantity ‘8’ to embody luck and femininity, and Fairly Lady, which explores the limitless sides of recent love. Ladies and men put on them for engagements and weddings but in addition to have fun any event in life.
What have been the secrets and techniques to the model’s glorious efficiency in China amidst the pandemic?
Final 12 months, our focus was closely on China, and we put most of our advertising investments into digital and social media platforms in China. These have been accompanied by the launch of our flagship retailer on Tmall Luxurious Pavilion and a WeChat retailer in April of 2020 because the nation was popping out its darkest time. This technique allowed us to succeed in out to a bigger goal base via “pals of the model” artists who share the identical values as FRED. Our strains have been additionally energized by some colourful and easy-to-wear novelties, together with a particular Power 10 buckle, which was bought solely on-line to profit China’s Particular Olympics Affiliation. A brand new promoting marketing campaign known as “Reside the Pleasure” was additionally launched shortly earlier than summer season in an try to bolster FRED’s distinctiveness amongst different jewellery homes.
We’ve additionally been capable of develop shortly into completely different cities, because of our initiative of straight opening shops final 12 months in cities like Hangzhou, Shenyang, and Qingdao. Proper earlier than the onset of Chinese language New 12 months 2021, we opened our third boutique in Beijing within the type of a very new retailer idea, positioned as our nationwide flagship retailer and that includes a particular zone devoted to males’s jewels. Whereas many luxurious manufacturers have been impacted by the pandemic, China remained a brilliant spot for FRED, and we even made a constructive begin in 2020 versus 2019 — an distinctive feat for the sector.
What labored and what didn’t as in comparison with your expectations?
General, China represented roughly 25 p.c of FRED’s international gross sales in 2020, and that enlargement was very fast. By way of final 12 months’s e-commerce, we made a presence by launching unique e-commerce shops on giant platforms like Tmall, which function highly effective on-line buying websites but in addition vibrant info platforms that attain out to very large younger audiences. Tmall was one among our prime 5 on-line shops in China final 12 months and allowed us to recruit and study a lot about new purchasers within the nation.
However we couldn’t speed up the tempo of our bodily shops opening in China as a lot as we’d have preferred because the seek for acceptable tasks takes time and care. We’re encountering a a lot stronger demand in China however we’d by no means compromise what we consider in — top-quality merchandise.
How did the model lure in first-time patrons in Tier-1 cities and past?
FRED has all the time been identified for its pioneering designs of up to date jewellery having a youthful and French-Riviera fashion. In China, we’ve stayed true to what the model stands for, and that’s how we’ve been capable of entice first-time patrons in Tier-1 cities like Shanghai and Beijing since 2015. These two cities are strategically necessary for his or her younger, well-traveled prospects, who usually search for top-quality French jewellery.
As a part of our enlargement, we’ve reached different Tier-1 and Tier-2 cities over the 12 months, like Guangzhou and Chengdu, at the perfect buying malls, with extra cities to be added later. As a market “latecomer,” we’ve been very impressed by the openness and heat proven by Chinese language prospects, and dealing with a high-profile A-list star like Guan Xiaotong as our Fairly Lady assortment ambassador has helped entice and recruit extra followers.
What are your plans for the remainder of 2021?
We’ve simply launched our “Fairly Lady” jewellery assortment, which is devoted to ladies who dare to like in their very own methods, in addition to a revisit of FRED’s excessive jewellery legacy, significantly for our heart-shaped stones. To advertise that assortment, we are going to stage personal occasions and shows in several cities, beginning with the opening ceremony of our new flagship retailer in Beijing Wangfu Central and adopted by a pop-up café crossover at Laduree in Tokyo Ba-Tsu Gallery within the Omotesando space and a themed get together on the iconic Bar83 at Sydney Tower.
In 2021, we are going to add ten new retail shops to our rising community, six of which shall be in China, with the opposite two in South Korea. We can even re-enter Singapore and unveil a brand new flagship boutique in Dubai. However as all the time, we’re dedicated to curbing the power consumption of all our shops — that are already among the many lowest within the luxurious trade — as a part of our sustainability mission.
On this age of e-commerce, will brick-and-mortar shops ever absolutely get replaced?
Though the comfort of e-shopping has grow to be a profitable pattern, particularly in China on account of its subtle e-commerce platforms and fee methods, we don’t consider that e-commerce can ever fully exchange brick-and-mortar shops. We’re proud that our shops are praised for his or her inclusive and welcoming environments.
How necessary are celeb endorsements for FRED Paris to enchantment to younger customers in China and past?
Our founder, Fred Samuel, liked to befriend film stars and artists all through his life, together with Pablo Picasso and Grace Kelly. They helped increase consciousness and desirability of the model the world over. At this time, stars like Yang Mi, Fan Chengcheng, Olivia Wang, Orfila Wu, and Elvis Han have grow to be extra than simply purchasers. They’re now “pals of the model.” We additionally like to crew up with athletes who’ve widespread values with FRED. Surfers, boxers, footballers, tennis gamers, and the previous Olympic medalist in gymnastics Li Xiaopeng all personal and put on Power 10 bracelets. And alongside Li, FRED works to lift public consciousness and funding for mentally challenged athletes in China.
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