Trading on goodwill

Jun 26 2005, 00:00 IST
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Joy Alukkas simple elegance, ready wit and easy ways belie the fact that he runs a Rs 1,000 crore gold and diamond jewellery business across India and the Middle East. This unassuming proprietor of the 39-outlet Joy Alukkas gold jewellery group, has outlets in the UAE, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait and Kerala. He now plans to draw on his international expertise to extend his empire across India to offer a truly international experience to consumers here.

Joy Alukkas started by trading on the goodwill that his family brand had among the large Malayali community in the Middle East. Today however, he is bringing back his global expertise and wide array of international jewellery back to India from the Middle East. We have 18 collections of jewellery including an Italian, Singapore, Turkish and Arabic section, he says. This is in addition to the jewellery from Kerala, Kolkata, Jaipur and Tamil Nadu that is retailed at the Joy Alukkas jewellery stores.

Turkish jewellery has been very popular in our outlets in Kerala, observes Allukas. Alukkas was in India recently to finalise the opening of his first outlet in the Delhi NCR region at the Gold Souk in Gurgaon. His 3,950 sq ft space in the main atrium on the ground floor is expected to be the major anchor store in the theme mall. Within two years, we will have six outlets in Delhi, he says confidently.

For him this makes good business sense because it lowers the cost of bringing a large range and volume of jewellery from around the world to the city. In 1987, Joy Alukkas, one of five brothers and 10 sisters, decided to take his familys jewellery business beyond the confines of Indian markets.

The Alukkas tryst with gold began in 1952 when Alukka J Verghese started a modest 200 sq ft outlet in Thrissur in Kerala. Father and sons worked on the brand and today Alukkas is the first brand in the Middle East to secure the ISO 9001 and ISO 14001. However, while his four brothers concentrated on the Indian business and took it up to Rs 500 crore, Joy Alukkas chose not to rest on the family laurels and grew the familys business abroad. His brothers today own 23 outlets. However, Joy Alukkas has grown his business to 39 stores which retail an average of 50 kg of gold everyday.

I believe gold retailing should offer

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