The diamond market is undergoing a significant transformation, with the price of natural diamonds...
Back in the 50’s, mass merchandisers rose to power. Macy’s. Bloomingdales. Sears. They sold everything from houses to jewelry, and they developed a definite following. They were among the biggest jewelers in the country. They’re still out there but the B&M stores did remarkably in the face of the competition. Diamond jewelry is one of the few categories where the ‘mom & pop’ business model has survived. Unlike lumberyards, travel agents, appliance stores and the like, every city has dozens or even hundreds of jewelers, most with a single location, and most owned by people who work in there.
The new mass-merchandisers are slightly different. Amazon sells everything, just like old time Sears and JC Penny but with an important difference. Those are independent businesses that are just marketing through Amazon. It’s the same with eBay and the virtual consignment sites.
The mass-merchandisers are still out there.
They’re the anchor stores of nearly every mall, and they still have a jewelry department, but those departments are shrinking. Those stores are shrinking. Meanwhile, Amazon and Costco are having trouble fitting it into their system. This story isn’t yet complete. If I were to point to the modern path of the big dogs it’s consolidation and vertical integration. Half of the stores in a typical mall are now owned by the same company (Sterling Corp), and they also own the manufacturers, the setters, and in some cases even the mining company. They own the credit card processor, the gold refiner, and the designer’s brands.
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