Family business Dhamani Jewels Group started in 1969 in the Indian city of Jaipur. Today the family business has grown multi-fold. In a conversation with RetailME, Amit Dhamani, managing director and CEO of Dhamani Jewels Group talks about strategically growing the family business.
“We are a strategy-first, as opposed to a jewellery-first business, which has facilitated our multi-directional growth especially through the last decade,” Dhamani stated. “We opened our first jewellery retail store in 2000 at Gold Souk in Dubai. Then we set up our first store within a shopping mall at Mall of the Emirates followed by The Dubai Mall in 2008. Our main focus has been to raise the bar and move forward. In doing so, we were quite mindful of the prevailing macroeconomic situations and the forward-looking vision of the UAE. We also had to find ways to better align with the customers and their evolving needs. In doing so, strategy played and continues to play a pivotal role.”
As part of its growth strategy, the Dhamani Jewels Group decided to launch a new brand called Dusoul, aimed at a slightly younger audience – the millennial generation. “We identified the need to cater for a younger, yet aspirational, audience,” Dhamani said. “We couldn’t have met the needs of this section with our ultra-luxury Dhamani 1969 brand. That’s why, we built Dusoul for them, following an affordable luxury strategy. We launched the brand in December 2018 at Atlantis, The Palm followed by a second boutique at City Centre Mirdif. And we will open multiple Dusoul stores until Expo 2020. We are also creating a strong digital platform for Dusoul, aligned with the nature of the brand and its target audience.”
According to Dhamani, it is also crucial to etch out the brand positioning and point of difference in the customers’ mind. “Over the years, we have put in concerted efforts to ensure that customers associate Dhamani 1969 as premium and exclusive. They should feel proud to own an exclusive piece of jewellery from Dhamani, a second piece of which doesn’t exist. Our speciality lies in being unique and bespoke, and we will never dilute that proposition. That’s why, we have stores in premium locations such as Burj Al Arab, Mall of the Emirates and The Dubai Mall. Having that said, we also exit at least two of our stores every year in the UAE, lying at the bottom of the performance pyramid. In turn, this helps us to sign new stores. It has been our growth strategy. However, I’ve to admit that sometimes I regret not accelerating our growth pace during the 2000-08 period.”
Every aspect of the business, from collaterals to people, had to be well-thought out, Dhamani observed. “We are among the first jewellery retailers to hire Mainland Chinese employees. Being positioned in the premium end of the market – through Dhamani 1969 and now Dusoul – we noticed the importance of Chinese travellers for our business. Our goal must be to build such capabilities required in the future. We are aware that the Expo 2020 will bring in a large chunk of new customers. We are already building a strategy to prepare the business to handle the needs of this new section of customers.”