Sultan Mohideen Hareef Mohamed, CEO of Sultan & Gems Fine Jewelry, and Vice President of Chennai Jeweller Association talks to DITP Think Thailand about India and Thailand’s connection in the gem and jewelry industry.
How would you describe the jewelry industry in India?
The jewelry industry in India is huge. There are two segments, one is investment jewelry, which is just gold. The other one is high-fashion jewelry, which is about gemstones, diamonds and non-gold, such as silver and other metals. These are the key interests for Indians visiting the Bangkok Gems & Jewelry Fair, because you have many things other than gold, such as metals and non-conventional jewelry.
What are the latest trends in your market?
Most Indians buy jewelry as an investment. They use a lot of plain gold jewelry. I see this in Thailand – pure gold jewelry – which is 22 karat gold. It matches the interests of Indian people.
Why is Thai jewelry craftsmanship important to India?
Generally, Thai culture is closely connected with Indian culture, including jewelry design which is similar. I see a connection in our history which dates back more than 2,000 years. This is quite important for Indian jewelers to visit the Bangkok Gems & Jewelry Fair to explore quality jewelry both in design and production.
What advice would you give Thai exhibitors interested in the Indian market?
I would advise Thai jewelers and manufacturers to visit Indian shows to monitor design trends. India is a huge market and a large country with 26 states. Each state has its own traditions – South India is different to North India. So Thai jewelers should visit Indian show to explore the trends that match Indian interests.
What are your thoughts of the Bangkok Gems & Jewelry Fair?
Bangkok Gems & Jewelry Fair is quite unique. It is close to the India market. International jewelry stakeholders should visit the fair to see the new technology and designs from Thailand. Each time I visit the fair, I see something different. I think there is a lot of scope for development, like with New Faces and Innovation Jewelry. It is important for the jewelry industry to look at, and discover, fresh ideas, not just from major brand, as sometimes small brands can give you what you want. They are the future of the industry.
Words by Natthinee Ratanaprasidhi