From Maharaja's to Millennials: Timeless Platinum Continues to Sit atop the Precious Metals Value Hierarchy for Generation after Generation of Jewellery Customers

Platinum Guild International
2019-05-16 12:44 1136

According to Platinum Guild International's 2019 Platinum Jewellery Business Review, young consumers, men's jewellery and female self-purchase will build upon platinum's pre-eminence in bridal jewellery to drive future demand

LONDON, May 16, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Platinum's natural white lustre and legendary grip on the world's most precious gems has ensured its position as the precious metal of choice for fine jewellery from the moment King Louis XVI of France declared it "the only metal fit for kings".  These timeless qualities, together with the allure of a metal that is thirty times rarer than gold, continue to drive aspiration for the precious metal perceived by today's jewellery customers as the highest value metal for jewellery.  This week Platinum Guild International (PGI) releases the 2019 Platinum Jewellery Business Review (PJBR) revealing the aspiration for platinum among today's consumers, and the jewellery industry's efforts to satisfy consumers' timeless quest for jewellery that captures the most meaningful moments, with a particular focus on men's jewellery, young consumers and self-purchase.

According to Platinum Guild International’s 2019 Platinum Jewellery Business Review, young consumers, men’s jewellery and female self-purchase will build upon platinum’s pre-eminence in bridal jewellery to drive future demand
According to Platinum Guild International’s 2019 Platinum Jewellery Business Review, young consumers, men’s jewellery and female self-purchase will build upon platinum’s pre-eminence in bridal jewellery to drive future demand

The annual Platinum Jewellery Business Review surveys over 1,000 manufacturers and retailers, in addition to over 1,000 consumers[1] to provide the world's most comprehensive and in-depth analysis of platinum jewellery's performance in 2018, together with a forecast for 2019, highlighting the trends that will shape the industry in each of the four key platinum jewellery markets: Japan, China, USA and India.

"This survey demonstrates how platinum continues to sit atop global consumers' precious jewellery metal hierarchy as the metal of highest perceived value, making it the natural choice for jewellery that holds a special place and meaning in their lives. Three of platinum jewellery's key markets experienced growth, and all four markets witnessed expanded platinum jewellery offerings as the jewellery industry seized opportunities to go beyond platinum's stronghold in bridal," says CEO Huw Daniel of Platinum Guild International.

Young Consumers

Contrary to popular belief, the rising cohort of millennial consumers and the even younger generations are finding meaning in jewellery that embodies their aspirations and captures their memories.  As the rarest of all precious metals, today's consumers are turning to rare and timeless platinum, just as their predecessors did.  But their choices are being expanded into multiple jewellery categories unlike any other time in history.

Japan continues to have the highest per capita consumption of platinum jewellery with a 6th year of consecutive growth, seeing an increase in platinum jewellery retail sales of +1% year-on-year. The key demand driver was heavier rings in bridal, resulting in 4.5% growth by weight in bridal consumption of platinum.  PGI predicts that continued collaborations with strong influencers, whether brands or individuals, will increase platinum jewellery's desirability to the affluent and next generation consumers, for bridal and beyond.

Men's Jewellery

Despite industry disruptions from government legislation and liquidity issues, India remains the fastest-growing platinum jewellery market with a significant 19% year-on-year increase in partner retail sales. PGI works with the jewellery industry to introduce new branded collections that open up consumer markets in one of the most rapidly changing and youthful markets. Whether by re-defining the meaning of jewellery for a new kind of contemporary, equal and inclusive love, or tapping into the aspirations of a new generation of men who seek success beyond traditional norms, Indian consumers increasingly see their values reflected in platinum's rarity and modernity in a market dominated by traditional gold jewellery.

The jewellery industry's embrace of platinum as an incremental opportunity that attracts a younger consumer to their stores while delivering higher revenue per piece has resulted in significant distribution gains in 2018 that continue into 2019. 


Retailers in the United States report 11% growth for platinum jewellery in 2018, thanks to a strong economy, a favourable metal price, and continuous marketing initiatives that remind consumers that platinum is the most secure setting for their prized diamonds.  Beyond the bridal sector which remains a platinum stronghold, self-purchase is a key area for future growth around the world, most notably in the United States.

In just one year, PGI's Platinum Born collection won the hearts of female consumers buying nice jewellery for themselves.  The collection, which started with 12 SKUs, has grown to over 56 SKUs in 2019, and expanded distribution from America's most exclusive independent retail stores to high-profile department store Saks Fifth Avenue, as well as online

Platinum jewellery sales by weight in China experienced a 5th consecutive year of decline as the industry continues a necessary structural transition in response to changes in the macro economy and retail consumption. Despite overall weak sentiment, many leading retailers revamped their platinum offering in 2018, with new and innovative designs, incorporating alternative materials, modular interactive parts, and re-imagined traditional Chinese motifs.  These new collections are driving growth in the number of units sold among PGI's partners, and are re-positioning platinum to be as competitive in both turn and revenue as the highest performing categories in store.  

Note: 1. Source: Nielsen Precious Metals Consumer Study, May 2019; respondents aged 18-65 years old, across 15 cities in China, India, Japan and the US. 

Platinum Jewellery Business Review (PJBR)

The Platinum Jewellery Business Review is an annual report published by PGI based on surveys conducted among PGI's manufacturing and retail partners, together with industry surveys conducted by independent sources, specifically analysing fabrication ounce demand, retail sales, and trade sentiment in the four major platinum jewellery markets of India, China, the US and Japan.

About Platinum Guild International 

Founded in 1975, Platinum Guild International (PGI) is the world's leading authority on the platinum jewellery industry and is an organisation supported by the major South African platinum producers. PGI has specialist teams dedicated to raising awareness of platinum jewellery, developing demand for platinum jewellery through consumer and trade facing programmes in the four key jewellery markets of China, India, Japan and USA.

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Source: Platinum Guild International