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Jewellery start-up brand GIVA founder Ishendra Agarwal has explained the reason why his company picked silver metal as their core segment. According to Agarwal, when co-founders Nikita Prasad, Sachin Shetty and him started GIVA in 2019, the market had gold-centred brands such as Tanishq and Kalyan Jewellers, but no silver-focussed branded retailers.

“There were very few brands in silver, and all of them were family-owned business. They had a very limited scale, limited vision. They were very much focusing on what they were doing in just one shop or two shops. You would see so many sunar ki dukan which used to sell silver but you would not see a large silver brand. Versus in gold, you would see so many large brands along with the small shops,” Agarwal said in The Neon podcast.

On studying the market, Agarwal realised that the segment was unorganised and completely dominated by small players. He sensed an opportunity; his company could bring quality and trust to consumers of this segment.

“In silver, because there’s no brand, all these small shops were just doing their manmani. They were selling whatever purity that they would commit to a consumer, but consumer was forced to buy. The local people [players] did not have any competition,” Agarwal explained.

“That is the problem that we were trying to solve when we started Giva. We wanted to give those standards that you would find in gold and diamonds, in silver as a category.” He added that GIVA aims to offer consumers the same standard in silver items that they’d get in gold and diamond.

Agarwal also gave an overview of the Indian jewellery market. He emphasised that local players enjoy maximum market share and the big branded players only have a small piece of the pie.

“India’s jewellery market is huge. It’s a $100-billion market. The market is so huge even Titan, which is the largest, they have just 5% share. Malabar is second. Malabar is big in India, but it’s even bigger in Middle East. If you look at the entire organised market, which Titan, Malabar, Kalyan, CaratLane, Blue Stone, PC Jewellers, etc. All of them combined, they have 10% market share,” Agarwal said.   

The jewellery industry is gradually getting organised in the last 10 years, and the reason for it is that consumers have begun to trust branded companies over local shops, according to Agarwal.

“Some of the new generation jewellers (in unorganised sector) are getting greedy, so their product quality is depleting. People are losing trust on the product. Whereas big brands such as Titan, Malabar, Kalyan, us (GIVA), we have so many processes on quality checks, on ensuring that the product we sell is of very high quality. So, people trust us more than the local jeweller. That’s the reason why the market is changing from unorganised to organised,” he said. 

He added that only 8-10% of the $100 billion jewellery market is organised, and silver constitutes 12-13% of the jewellery market. “Last year, if you look at the silver consumption, in jewellery only, it was around 2,300 tonnes,” he said. 

GIVA currently has over 80 retail stores in India. The startup raised $35 million in its Series B funding round in April last year, according to Tracxn. Some of the investors in the jewellery startup are Premji Invest, Alteria Capital, and A91 Partners. 

Also Read: Kalyan Jewellers Q3 results: Profit up 22% YoY at Rs 180 crore; revenue jumps 34%

Also Read: Titan Q3 business update: Firm sees 22% growth, led by jewellery segment

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