Michael Hill closes six stores, axes senior managers amid tough retail environment

Well-known jewellery chain Michael Hill has revealed it closed six stores in the past six months and scrapped senior management roles due to tough retail conditions.

In a trading update released by the stock market listed company, it described the six months to December 31, 2023 as a “challenging period for the business” as its profitability took a hit and is estimated to be down 45 to 39 per cent on the same period of 2022.

Of the six “underperforming” stores it closed, one was in regional WA, one in Queensland, one in Victoria, two in NSW and one in Canada.

In the statement, the company blamed economic conditions for “impacting consumer sentiment”, adding that its profit margin was affected by the inflated cost of gold and diamonds, and “aggressive competitor behaviour”, which led to a decision to “reduce operating costs, including the exit of a number of senior management roles”.

It did not reveal how many staff or which roles were affected.

Michael Hill also owns the more affordable Bevilles chain.

Michael Hill also owns the more affordable Bevilles chain.

The company achieved sales of $362.8 million during the six months to December 31, 2023, which was up 4.1 per cent on the same period of 2022.

But it revealed its gross profit for the period was expected to be between $30-33 million, which represents a fall of 45 to 39 per cent from the gross profit of $54.5 million it posted in the second half of 2022.

Earlier in 2023 the company bought the more affordable Bevilles jewellery chain, and it opened four new Bevilles stores in Australia during the past six months.

Michael Hill CEO and managing director Daniel Bracken said profit margins were hit in the second half of 2023. Picture: Richard Walker.

Michael Hill CEO and managing director Daniel Bracken said profit margins were hit in the second half of 2023. Picture: Richard Walker.

Source: news.com.au

How accurate are jewellery valuations?

The accuracy of jewellery valuations can vary depending on several factors. Here are some key points to consider:

  1. Appraiser’s expertise: The accuracy of a jewellery valuation depends on the competence and experience of the appraiser. A certified gemologist or a professional jewellery appraiser with relevant credentials is more likely to provide a precise and reliable valuation.
  2. Purpose of the valuation: The purpose of the valuation matters. If the valuation is for insurance coverage, it may be higher to ensure full replacement in case of loss or theft. If it’s for resale, the value may be lower as it accounts for market conditions and potential profit margins for a buyer.
  3. Quality of the jewellery: The quality of the jewellery, including the materials, gemstones, craftsmanship, and overall design, plays a significant role in its valuation. High-quality materials and precious gemstones will generally have higher values.
  4. Market conditions: The fluctuating prices of precious metals and gemstones can impact the accuracy of a jewellery valuation. Market conditions change over time, so a valuation today might not hold the same value in the future.
  5. Certification and documentation: Having proper documentation and certifications for gemstones and metals enhances the accuracy of the valuation. This information helps appraisers make more precise assessments.
  6. Appraisal method: There are different methods for valuing jewellery, such as comparison with similar pieces, the cost to replace, or the intrinsic value of materials. Each method has its advantages and limitations.
  7. Local market differences: Valuations can vary across different regions due to variations in consumer preferences and market demands.

It’s important to note that a jewellery appraisal is an expert’s opinion based on their evaluation of the item at a particular point in time. The value assigned to the jewellery may change over time due to various factors, including market fluctuations, changes in demand, or updates in gemstone grading techniques.

AcuVal Adds the consistency of repeatable outcome, this give you a credible and trusted valuation.

World Record Ring made of 50,907 Recycled Diamonds

World Record Ring made of 50,907 Recycled Diamonds

Jewelers in India have shattered a world record with a ring made of 50,907 diamonds.

The Eutierria Ring has more than twice as many diamonds as the previous record holder, The Touch of Ami, with 24,679 diamonds. Both rings were made in India.

The new ring, created by H.K. Designs and Hari Krishna Exports, was certified last month by Guinness World Records as the ring with the most diamonds.

The ring took nine months to design and make, entirely of recycled materials – 460.55 grams of gold and 130.19 carats of diamonds all re-purposed from customer returns.

It is designed as a sunflower with four layers of petals, a shank, two diamond discs, and a butterfly.

It has been certified by IGI and has a retail value of $785,645, according to a press release issued jointly by both companies.

It takes its name, Eutierria, from a term describing a positive feeling of oneness with the earth.

Spurce: IDEX

Certin Diamond Insurance

Certin Diamond Insurance
Certin Diamond Insurance

With Certin Diamond Insurance, you are covered!

We offer 30 days of complimentary cover to ensure you are covered from the day you pick up your precious piece from one of our network jewellers.

Simply fill in your details online, register your diamond and receive instant cover.

Alternatively, give us a call and we can provide your cover over the phone.

Learn more: certin.com.au/#contact

Jewelry Worth Millions Stolen from Brink’s Truck


US authorities are investigating a massive theft of jewelry from a Brink’s armored vehicle in California last week.

The truck was transporting goods to the International Gem & Jewelry Show in Pasadena, California, exhibition director Brandy Swanson told Rapaport News on Tuesday. The victims were 16 to 18 vendors. The contents included “high-end jewelry, watches and diamonds,” Swanson said.

The executive estimated the losses at $100 million to $150 million. Brink’s put the value at less than $10 million, according to media reports — a discrepancy explained by the practice of vendors underinsuring goods, Swanson noted.

“They all have invoices and paperwork to show the higher value,” Swanson said.

The theft occurred early on July 11, according to a spokesperson for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in Los Angeles, which is investigating the case together with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

On that day, deputies from the Sheriff’s Department station in Santa Clarita, California, were called to the “Flying J” rest stop and gas station in the mountain community of Lebec in response to the burglary of a cargo container.

They “learned that several pieces of jewelry and gemstones valued at several million dollars were stolen from a locked ‘Brink’s’ tractor trailer by unknown suspects,” the department said Monday in a report.

“According to the information the customers provided to us before they shipped their items, the total value of the missing items is less than $10 million,” Brink’s said in a statement quoted in the US media. “We are working with law enforcement, and we will fully reimburse our customers for the value of their assets that were stolen, in accordance with the terms of our contract.” The company did not respond to a request for comment from Rapaport News.

Source: Diamonds.net

Marie Antoinette Diamonds Shatter Estimate

Marie Antoinette Diamond Bracelet

Two diamond bracelets belonging to Marie Antoinette more than doubled their high estimate at a recent Christie’s auction in Geneva.

The set, made by Boehmer in 1776 and passed down through Marie Antoinette’s family for 250 years, fetched $8.2 million at Tuesday’s Magnificent Jewels sale, Christie’s said. That figure is the second-highest price for a jewel owned by the French queen and the highest price ever garnered for one of her diamond pieces. In 2018, Sotheby’s sold a natural-pearl and diamond pendant belonging to Marie Antoinette for $36.2 million against its $2 million high estimate.

In total, the November 9 auction raked in $59 million, with 11 lots fetching more than $1 million.

Other notable items sold at the auction include a pear brilliant-cut, 55.50-carat, D-color, potentially internally flawless diamond, which went for $5.3 million, or $95,700 per carat, at the high end of its estimate. A cushion-shaped Burmese ruby and diamond brooch by Van Cleef & Arpels brought in $4.6 million at the auction, smashing its CHF 600,000 ($656,756) upper valuation.

An oval brilliant-cut, 43.19-carat, D-color, internally flawless diamond ring garnered $3.6 million, representing $83,000 per carat — within estimates. A rectangular-cut, 42.98-carat, fancy-vivid-yellow diamond fetched $3.1 million, in the middle of its presale valuation, while a fancy-light-pink and colorless diamond brooch by Harry Winston hammered for $2.3 million, just over its lower estimate.

However, a ring featuring a heart modified brilliant-cut, 6.75-carat, fancy-vivid-purple-pink, SI1-clarity diamond failed to find a buyer. The piece was estimated to bring in up to $10.9 million at the auction. A ruby bangle by Cartier, the first anniversary gift Wallis SImpson, the Duchess of Windsor, received from her husband, also remained unsold. That piece had a high valuation of $2.2 million. 

In total, Christie’s sold 93% of items on offer, with bidders hailing from 32 countries.

“A very dynamic saleroom, coupled with strong online and telephone bids from around the world, resulted in lively bidding and a very high sell-through rate,” said Rahul Kadakia, international head of jewelry at Christie’s. “Marie Antoinette’s diamonds captured the world’s attention and achieved a fitting result for such a magnificent royal jewel.”

Source: Diamonds.net

China’s largest jewellery retailer backs mined diamonds

Chow Tai Fook 

The Natural Diamond Council (NDC), which groups the world’s seven leading diamond producers, has inked a deal with China’s top jewellery retailer Chow Tai Fook to boost demand for mined rocks in the Asian market.

The partnership, the trade organization’s first collaboration with a retailer, seeks to attract young Chinese customers to naturally produced diamonds.

It also comes as Chow Tai Fook, which has more than 4,500 stores in East Asia and the United States, plans to expand its global footprint.

“One of our key priorities this year is to work closely with natural diamond retailers to protect and convey the authentic and unique beauty of natural diamonds together,” David Kellie, CEO of the Natural Diamond Council, said in the statement.

“I am confident that this partnership will solidify the values of and forge consumers’ desire for natural diamonds,” Chan Sai-Cheong, managing director (Mainland China) of Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group added.

Earlier this month, the world’s biggest jeweller Pandora dealt a blow to diamond miners by announcing it would no longer sell mined gems, but exclusively man-made ones.

Since 2011, when prices peaked thanks to China’s younger shoppers, diamonds have faltered. Lab-grown stones, initially priced confusingly close to the real thing, posed a challenge.

The NDC, until 2020 known as the Diamond Producers Association, focuses on marketing mined rocks and its funded by its members: ALROSA, De Beers, Dominion Diamonds, Lucara Diamond, Petra Diamonds, Rio Tinto and RZM Murowa.

Source: mining.com

The Four Ex Diamond

diamond pendant

Sourcing a diamond is easy with the help and guidance of the DCLA diamond exchange.

Proportion is graded alongside Symmetry, polish and importantly the Transparency.

This is why the Diamond Exchange are the most sought after for those who want the finest diamonds available.

To ensure the highest quality, the Diamond Exchange works with the finest rough diamond producers based in South Africa, Antwerp, Israel and India.

Each diamond is then meticulously analysed by our Laboratory diamond gemologists.

Using sophisticated laboratory equipment every aspect of the individual stone is checked, including the all-important proportions that will produce the most brilliance.


Proportions affect how light travels within the diamond.

Diamonds that are cut too shallow and wide, or too deep and narrow lose light out the sides or bottom, causing the diamond to lose brilliance.

A select Diamond exchange Diamond are cut to ideal diamond proportions, creating a superior diamond to reflecting the maximum amount of light back to the eye.


The alignment of a diamond’s facets in relation to each other or opposing facets affects the diamond’s light performance.

Facets which are symmetrical and aligned, reflect light directly back to your eye.

Symmetry grading to Hearts and Arrows standards ensure its brilliance and fire is emitted evenly.


All Diamond Exchange diamonds are certified by recognised international accredited laboratories.

This provides you an authoritative analysis of your diamond.

Diamond Exchange also verifies that your diamond meets all the specific quality requirements and checks the diamond is cold laser inscribed.


Transparency, also called pellucidity, is the material property of allowing light to pass through. In mineralogy, another term for this property is diaphaneity.

Developed by the DCLA , the Transparency Grade is the degree to which a diamond transmits light, directly relevant to its ‘cloudiness’ or ‘haziness.

In other words, it is a comprehensive assessment of light performance based on the quality of the diamond crystal itself.

Piaget’s Diamond Heliconia Necklace Brings to Mind a Stunning Tropical Bloom

Piaget Wings of Light Diamond Heliconia Necklace

The Diamond Heliconia Necklace, a creation from Piaget’s latest Wings of Light Collection, evokes a tropical bloom with 130 gorgeous pear-shaped diamonds.

Piaget’s latest high jewellery collection, Wings of Light, invites you to escape to a fantasy land of magic, mystery, romance and rarity. The creations embody a flourishing natural utopia, while capturing the splendour of a lush, secret jungle filled with hidden treasures. Drawing inspiration from exotic bird plumage, vibrant flowers and sunsets, a universe of extraordinary shapes and colours awaits.

Showing off the maison’s unsurpassed skill in recreating naturalistic pieces is this Diamond Heliconia Necklace. A breathtaking 130 pear-shaped diamonds and 16 brilliant-cut diamonds totalling 44.81 carats evoke the distinctive tropical blooms with flowering bracts.

The vines intersect to lead the gaze to a spectacular pear-shaped fancy vivid 6.46-carat yellow diamond. Remaining true to the precision the maison is known for, the necklace is a transformable piece that can be worn four different ways.

Source: Piaget

Jewelry Sales Down 54 per cent in Hong Kong

hong kong

Sales of jewelry and other luxury goods in Hong Kong fell by more than half in July, according to new figures.

It was the worst affected sector of all, with a year-on-year decline of 53.7 per cent to $328m.

Sales were hit by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, a two-week quarantine requirement for tourists from mainland China, and continuing anti-government protests.

Figures for the first half of 2020 show revenue from revenue from jewelry, watches, clocks and other valuable gifts was down by 64 per cent to $2.14 bn.

Total retail sales for all sectors were down 23.1 per cent compared with July 2019, at about $3.41bn, according to data released yesterday by the Census and Statistics Department of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region HKSAR government.

Source: IDEX