Retail jewellers are arguably the businesses most vulnerable to break-ins and theft anywhere on the high street. Few if any other retailers have such a high-value collection of stock sitting in a room for all to see. Could there be anything more appealing for a burglar than a cabinet containing thousands of pounds worth of small items that can be stuffed into a pocket? You have to work much harder to make off with a few grand worth of loot if it’s a Dixons and you’ve got a 42-inch TV under your arm.
Am I stating the obvious? For most jewellers, thankfully yes. But every so often a story breaks that an unfortunate jeweller has fallen prey to a smash-and-grab and is not insured for what was taken. If the thieves are caught, there is a possibility of some of the jewellery being returned, but really if they’re pros, a good deal of it will have been sold on before the police make any arrests.
I raise the issue because we reported on several break-ins this month, one of which targeted a jeweller who claims up to £250,000 worth of goods were taken and he has no cover. For many, such a disaster could sink their business. I implore anyone jeweller out there who is not insured to get on the phone today and sort out a policy – I would like to see a time when there are no ‘jobs’ for us to report on.
The post-Brexit mood waxes and wanes. Hallmarking was down this month, but then spending by foreigners on British high streets has soared as a consequence of sterling being low. Jewellery demand is set to rise thanks to the first gold price fall since Brexit, but retailers are sitting on non-resalable stock because of abused returns policies.
There is so much movement in the economic metrics these days that it hardly seems sensible to spend any time second-guessing what the future holds. Good promo, regularly refreshed product lines and an upbeat attitude at the most powerful tools in the arsenal.