“By the gram” gold may boost Taste Holdings


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In anticipation of a pick-up in consumer spending, restaurant franchisor Taste Holdings will be launching a jewellery brand, Davidowns, a premium jewellery division that will operate within selected Makro stores.

This launch will further strengthen the company’s footprint in the jewellery market as it already has interests in the Durban-based jeweller NWJ.

The AltX-listed company also franchises brands such as Maxi’s and Scooters Pizza.

ÔÇ£This concept is a first for the South African jewellery sector and will involve buying of premium jewellery by the gram with the prices adjusted daily according to fluctuations in the gold price,ÔÇØ Taste Holdings director Duncan Crosson said.

Crosson said the division would bring together a team of designers and merchandisers who would identify and create pieces that adapted top international fashion trends to South African preferences.

In a trading update for the month of December, sales within NWJ increased 7%, while same store sales increased 2.5% over December 2008.

However, there was a 17% decline in spend per transaction as consumers continued the year long trend of buying lower-ticket items in this category. Perhaps the recent consumer confidence index is giving the group hope the division will succeed.

A pilot store was opened last week in Makro’s Springfield Park store, in Durban.

The pilot store will combine stylish jewellery with a ÔÇ£Weigh It & Wear ItÔÇØ and ÔÇ£Gold By The GramÔÇØ approach that is expected to be 25%-50% lower than conventional retail prices.

A further five jewellery stores will be rolled out in the Makro stores in Gauteng towards the end of the year.

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