Amor, with its range of sterling silver and gold jewelry designed and moderately priced to sell at a high rate of volume, has begun making inroads into the U.S.
The 40-year-old, vertically integrated jewelry brand based in Obertshausen, Germany, is widely distributed in Europe, and in Canada, at 84 Hudson’s Bay locations. Last fall Amor started selling in the U.S. at Lord & Taylor, which has six stores carrying the line. Lord & Taylor and Hudson’s Bay are part of Hudson’s Bay Co. Amor also sells at certain locations of Gift-ology, the gift shop chain owned by Hannoush Jewelers.
“Gold and silver, glittering gemstones, fantastic pearls — genuine jewelry is our passion,” Lovro Mandac, chairman of Amor and former chief executive officer of the Galeria Kaufhof department store chain, told WWD. “The design of the range is classic, yet still modern and fashionable.”
By the end of the first quarter of 2019, Mandac sees 13 to 15 stores selling Amor in the U.S.
According to Mandac, 8 million pieces of Amor jewelry are sold annually, with “infinity” silver rose gold-plated zirconia white stud earrings and “tree of life” rose gold necklaces, priced in the $30 to $40 range, among the bestsellers, as listed on Amazon in the U.K. Lord & Taylor stores have an average of 1,800 Amor sku’s, depending on the extent of the fixturing system installed. At Giftology shops, there are 1,100 sku’s on average.
Amor’s fixture system for merchandise display is a key factor in generating the volume, and providing what Mandac characterized as a different shopping experience from the plethora of jewelry brands found at retail. Amor’s “ring presenters” enable shoppers to try on rings in different sizes while keeping the products secure from theft, and Amor’s four-way swivel cabinets are designed for easy selection and fast replenishment.
“Amor represents a unique and easy-to-understand jewelry system to the specialized jewelry trade and department store channel,” said Hans Schmitt, Amor’s ceo. “We offer various advantages: a category management system, extensive product offer with 800 new sku’s a year, a full supply chain, fast replenishment and fixturing. We manage the whole process.”
Schmitt said Amor has a new warehouse to replenish merchandise globally. “The modern logistics system gives us the strength to provide the fastest replenishment around the world,” Schmitt said. “We transfer sales data on a daily basis via EDI (interfacing) to our ERP system. After processing the data, we start the logistics process with picking and shipping. From our logistics center to the U.S., we need two to three days. We replenish sold items automatically directly to the point of sale. There is no extra work needed from our department store and independent specialized jeweler clients.”
On the retail selling floors, “Our practical rotating showcases offer you an ‘at-a-glance’ overview of the breadth of the range and makes it easier to discover your personal favorites,” said Schmitt. “It’s our policy to let you see and try on Amor jewelry before you buy. You can try on all our rings at leisure with our ring presenter, whether you are in an Amor store or a department store. And to make sure you can always find all items in our range of jewelry, we always take care to immediately refill stocks of any sold-out items. The sku corresponds to a spot in each cabinet so when an item is sold, it’s automatically replenished and there’s merchandising consistency.”
Asked if Amor is a concession business, Schmitt replied, “We offer several business models to our clients. Concession is certainly one of the models.”
Schmitt said the company operates 2,700 points of sale across Europe, with department stores garnering a 60 percent share of the business, and jewelry chains and specialty shops, 40 percent. There are also 48 Amor retail shops in malls.
“We sell Amor in a lot of department stores and selected jewelry chains across Europe,” said Schmitt, citing Karstadt, Kaufhof, El Corte Inglés, Galeries Lafayette and Christ Jewelers, as well as Myers in Australia.