Affluent Asian Consumers Find More Meaning with Platinum
Hong Kong (3 February, 2019) – In a jewellery market that experiences consumer attitude changes and cultural shifts across regions, platinum continues to hold a strong footing in the field of love and romance-based purchases in Asia.
“Valentine’s Day has been an important love-gifting holiday. We expect this year to not be any different. With a strong link with love and meaning, women and men continue to buy platinum jewellery – for their partners and also for themselves, on such love-based occasions.” says Huw Daniel, CEO of Platinum Guild International.
Evolving Chinese Consumers
An evolving society now sees comparably high rates for women in China seeking their own career. Looking at the top end of the scale, two-thirds of the world’s self-made female billionaires are Chinese. This, in turn, has a strong trickle-down effect and promotes independence and a new, empowered mindset that leads to newly developing consumer habits and purchasing behaviours with an increased sense of “self”, as some expressed that “If only you are good to yourself, you know how to appreciate life and love”. One key aspect becoming more prevalent is self-gifting, at special occasions or with a special meaning.
The last consumer survey of over 10,000 females aged 18-54 living in Tier 1 - 3 cities in China show that in terms of jewellery, platinum is the preferred choice for women to buy on love occasions for themselves, with 22% of the self-purchased pieces of platinum jewellery taking place on such dates, much higher than 14% for all jewellery categories.
The shifts in culture and society in China are also impacting marriage. As more young people are seeking a successful career and starting their family at a later age, marriage has been more celebrated as a strong bond of the couple rather than a social obligation, which dovetails perfectly with platinum’s own properties of rarity and strength, and holding a diamond firmly. Over 80% of surveyed brides-to be in 18 Tier 1-3 cities in 2018 were considering platinum for their wedding rings.
In non-bridal segment, not surprisingly, over 70% of the non-bridal platinum jewellery pieces gifted to Chinese women are from partners and boyfriends, to celebrate memorable moments in their relationships, which is over 10% higher than the share for total jewellery. With platinum recognised as a preference for love-based jewellery purchases, Valentine’s Day is predicted to continue its strong contribution, whether from individual’s purchasing for themselves or from romance-based efforts and proposals.
Distinct Japanese Characteristics
Of the 600 Japanese women surveyed by Platinum Guild International in a 2018 consumer survey on jewellery, 95% of them find receiving platinum jewellery exciting. Compared to Japanese women in 30s and 40s+, those in their 20s rank the most keen to make purchases for themselves, at times for seasonal moments such as Valentine’s Day and their own birthday, but crucially for a personal ‘reward’, such as experiencing personal success, or to motivate themselves before an important task.
Valentine’s Day is seen as a modern and aspirational festive to be involved in, with platinum being in synergy with Japanese concepts of design: pure and authentic, precious with clarity. These traits are clear signifiers of why the precious metal continues to find particular success in Japanese cities and among consumers who are looking for meaning in their jewellery.
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