The great bet of the Colombian jewelry and costume jewelry industry

The great bet of the Colombian jewelery and costume jewelery industry

colombian jewelry

The external market is the great bet for the local Colombian jewelry and costume jewelry industry. The elaboration of unique pieces and the variety of materials with which they are produced are only two strengths. This is the panorama.
Germany, Chile, the United States, France, Switzerland, Costa Rica and Peru are countries that offer great opportunities for Colombian jewelry and costume jewelry products.

This diverse industry with an ancient tradition, with a wide offer that ranges from unique pieces to large-scale production, worked with materials such as gold, silver, emeralds, precious and semi-precious stones, seeds, among other indigenous materials, has been conquering the external market.

The proof is that while in 2010 less than US $ 1 million in jewelry was sold, in 2016 the figure totaled US $ 4.5 million, according to Pro colombia analysis. In costume jewelery, the data was reduced, from US $ 24.3 million in 2010 to US $ 19.3 million in 2016.

As of November 2017, according to Dane figures, foreign sales of colombian diamonds  and costume colombian emeralds reached US $ 26.1 million and the countries that were exported the most were Ecuador, the United States, Mexico, Bolivia and Peru.

Felipe Jaramillo, president of Pro colombia, is optimistic, considering that both the sector and the country's situation respond to international demand. It also highlights the quality and innovation of the products, the production process that includes indigenous populations, an issue that goes hand in hand with the global trend that seeks to link vulnerable populations with sustainable development.

"Now that we are in full post-conflict, this market has great opportunities to develop its potential," says Jaramillo.

Given the importance of this industry, Procolombia has found opportunities for the different lines of the sector. In jewelry products the possibilities are evident in Germany, Bolivia, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, the United States, France, Mexico, Panama, Peru and Switzerland.

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In costume jewelry, in addition to the above markets, the following stand out: Australia, Brazil, El Salvador, Spain, Guatemala, the Netherlands, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. There, entrepreneurs in the sector can capitalize on business opportunities.

The most requested products abroad are costume jewelery and proof of this is that they represent 75% of the sector's exports.

One of the centers with the greatest development of this activity is Bogotá, where there is a cluster of jewelery and costume jewelery, an initiative of the Bogotá Chamber of Commerce (CCB).

The objective of the entity to 10 years is to position the design of Bogota jewelry and costume jewelery in the local market and in Latin American countries, in the upper middle segment, differentiating itself by its diversity and the personality of its brands and by offering quality and sustainable products that they are developed with creativity and innovation.

The cluster has more than 1,000 companies and its assets exceed $ 209,000 million, according to data from the commercial registry of the CCB, and its exports in 2016 were greater than US $ 24 million. The main destinations are the United States, Italy, Bolivia, Mexico and Peru.

The sector is responding to new market trends. According to Ana María Sarmiento, manager of Flor Amazona, which exports 80% of its production to 20 countries, including Germany, the Netherlands, the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, China and Belgium, there has been a significant and constant increase in sales by internet sites. Similarly, he believes that great licensing and franchise opportunities are emerging.


Although everything seems to be going well for the sector, entrepreneurs consider that they have many challenges. One of them is market saturation, as there are many product options competing for the taste of consumers in the area of ​​non-basic purchases, says Sarmiento.

A complex issue for local businesses is that there are many brands in jewelry products, for example, that have the financial backing of large fashion groups for marketing investments.

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Added to this are the high taxes and logistical challenges and the increase in the supply of very low-cost accessories and replicas of major brands produced in China, Bangladesh, Vietnam, countries against which it is difficult to compete on prices and capacity. The fluctuations of the dollar and the price of gold also impact. Although the local industry wants to shine, the task is not easy, since there are still challenges to face.

Hurricane Effect

Álvaro Ávila Joyas, is a company with a high export volume; However, the hurricane that affected Puerto Rico - its main market - ended up generating a significant drop in sales in 2016. Despite selling in other countries such as the United States, Mexico and Spain, the result was not the best, he says. its representative, Álvaro Ávila.

The businessman, who is dedicated to the production and marketing of designer jewelery, considers that the global economy is hit; at least that is the reason given by its main clients abroad for not placing orders.

The firm is part of the jewelry cluster in the capital of the republic and also of an internationalization project carried out by the Bogota Chamber of Commerce in order to attack the United States market. It has a store in the Santafé shopping center and has been exporting for more than 9 years.

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