WHP’s expansion helps in post demonetization phase: Mr. Aditya Pethe, Director, WHP Jewellers

Amidst so many challenges in the industry in 2016, WHP Jewellers continued on their expansion streak with three major launches this year. Speaking about the strategy of WHP Jewellers, Mr. Aditya Pethe, Director of the company tells Rika Aash Pathak about how these expansions have helped the company grow in such challenging times.

Incepted in 1909, Waman Hari Pethe (WHP) Jewellers has been a leading retailer across the nation. Taking the legacy of WHP Jewellers forward, Mr. Aditya Pethe, Director of the company continues to explore fresh business horizons with three new ventures in 2016. According to him the company has always evolved as per the changing consumer needs and market scenarios. He adds, “We started seeing the changes in consumer’s behavior due to the policies implemented by the government. We realized that branded Jewellery and products are going to be the future which is why we launch 3 new ventures – online Jewellery store www.whp.net.in which caters to the online Jewellery requirements of the digital consumer and expands our reach, 9 Ratna which is a certified authentic gemstone brand and last but not the least our latest venture Izaara which is a premium silver Jewellery brand.”

The year 2016 has been the most challenging year for the gems and jewellery industry with implementation of new policies and demonetization in the year-end. “Our expansion plans were a well thought of strategy which will also help us in post demonetization phase where the industry is expected to go drastic re-structuring,” tells Mr. Pethe commenting on the current market scenario. In 2016, many retailers stepped in e-commerce market. WHP Jewellers too have entered this space recently with Your Online Jewellery store www.whp.net.in to reach out to a wider consumer base. Mr. Pethe elaborates, “Having physical presence across 21 prime locations in Maharashtra, Goa and Indore, the customer database of WHP Jewellers is massive. Ecommerce platform has enabled our existing as well as aspiring consumers PAN India to access our products. We have realized that we get more response from areas we are not present physically at as well as tier II and III places.”

It was further noted by WHP Jewellers that in region where they are already present, consumers who need light weight jewellery or want to make a bullion purchase use the online store instead of physically walking into the store. Mr. Pethe and his team are constantly working on enhancing the online experience of jewellery buying for consumers and planning strategic tie ups with market places like Amazon. “Another positive side of E-commerce is that one can look at Omni channel retailing. Integration of offline and online business helps generate higher revenues,” added Mr. Pethe. With demonetization and Government encouraging online transactions, consumers who were once hesitant to make purchases online are now going to start trusting the medium even more.

WHP Jewellers recently launched silver jewellery brand – Izaara as they believed that silver jewellery has always held a unique position in the industry. In spite of being a precious metal, it is not very expensive. “However, it has been one of the most undated metals and what the segment lacked is good designs that are fashion forward. Today’s new age woman loves variety, however, gold restricts her from buying 10 different pieces for 10 different occasions due to the price point, whereas fashion jewellery has depreciation and of course it is not a precious metal,” tells Mr. Pethe. Izaara is a premium silver jewellery brand that captures the essence of today’s women and offers a wide array of trendy and wearable designs where each piece makes a style statement. It brings more than 700 exclusive designs, each piece hallmarked, made with anti-tarnish alloys and is 100 per cent skin safe. “Izaara aims at bridging the gap where consumer gets the pleasure of wearing a precious metal (besides gold) as well as has a variety of jewellery that goes with her different moods and diverse ensembles.”

WHP Jewellers is optimistic about 2017. Mr. Pethe shares, “December 2016 has shown some revival of sentiments and we feel 2017 will start off well too. It all depends on the future announcements by the government too as demonetization is still ongoing process. The much awaited GST if implemented effectively will bring transparency and structure to the industry.” In terms of expansion, WHP Jewellers will be adding more stores to their list in 2017. “As far as Izaara is concerned, we are targeting a minimum of 50 touch points by end of 2017 whereas for Your Online Jewellery Store www.whp.net.in, we will get into strategic partnerships with 2-3 large market places.”