Buccellati accelerates expansion in China
Buccellati's expansion in China is going full steam ahead. In August 2017, Chinese group Gansu Gangtai Holding acquired an 85% stake in the Italian jewellery brand founded in 1919 by the Buccellati family. Since then, Buccellati has strengthened its international presence, putting a renewed emphasis on product design. Its new owner is one of the leading gold jewellery distributors in China, and belongs to the Gangtai Group conglomerate, listed on the Shanghai stock exchange.
In the last six months, Buccellati has opened five stores in China: three in Shanghai, one in Beijing and one in Macao. By the end of 2018, another six store openings are on the cards in the country, including a 700 m2 flagship - Buccellati's largest in the world - in Beijing next October, inside the China World shopping mall. The flagship will showcase the jeweller's full range of products and feature a section on Buccellati's history and archives.
"Chinese consumers are our main clientèle, accounting for 50% of our sales. Our leading regions are Europe, the Middle East and Asia, which climbed in third place this year," said Buccellati's CEO Gianluca Brozzetti.
The brand is specialised in fine jewellery and goldsmithing, and it was sold in 2013 to Italian investment fund Clessidra. Under the latter’s aegis, between 2014 and 2015, Buccellati's revenue leapt 63% in like-for-like terms, reaching €44 million. Growth in 2017 is expected to have been around 20%.
"Since our acquisition [by Gansu Gangtai], one of the main changes has been a renewed focus on creativity and product design, as well as on merchandising for all product categories and functionalities, and all pricing levels," said Brozzetti. He added that product design is still controlled by the Buccellati family, which owns a 7.5% stake in the company, while Clessidra also kept a 7.5% stake.
Andrea Buccellati is the jeweller's current Creative Director, supported by his daughter Lucrezia, respectively the third and fourth generation of the Buccellati family to work in the company since its foundation.
Buccellati currently operates 49 monobrand retail outlets between stores, retail corners and shops-in-shop, and is also distributed via 150 multibrand retailers.
After launching two advertising campaigns in 2015 and 2016 starring Italian-Egyptian model and actress Elisa Sednaoui, lensed in Milan and Venice by photographer Peter Lindbergh, Buccellati recently unveiled its new campaign.
Shot in Florence in black and white, again by Lindbergh, it stars top model Carolyn Murphy and Chinese actress Zhang Ziyi, the brand's ambassador in China.
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