Founded by Ishu Datwani, Anmol Jewellers is now a 28-year-old jewellery brand that has designed the bridal jewellery of Bollywood celebrities including Shilpa Shetty, Lara Dutta, Malaika Arora, and Urvashi Joshi among others. Datwani shares his ‘Anmol’ journey with us.
“My father was into manufacturing of Ayurvedic medicines and wanted me to pursue the same. However, I was not inclined towards it. For some reason, I was fascinated with diamonds and had a friend whose father was in the diamond business. In the second year of college, I did a diploma in Gemology from Gemological Institute of India in 1982 and that is where it all began.”
Datwani recalls that his friend’s father helped him in finding a diamond jewellery artisan. After completing his diploma, he started taking jewellery orders from friends and relatives by visiting them at their homes and asking them to choose from a catalogue. He did that for a year till he finished his graduation in 1983.
After graduation, he got a job offer in Delhi in the packaging industry where he worked for almost a year and from 1984-1985, he was in US with a job in garments industry. Realizing that the only thing that excited him was jewellery, he permanently came back to Mumbai in 1885.
Returning to Mumbai, Datwani bought a store in Bandra with a carpet area of 150 sq.ft.with an initial borrowed investment of Rs 13.5 lakh. During that time, there used to be a Gold Control License Act and he did not have the license so Datwani sold only silver jewellery in my store for three to four years which meant I was losing money. Somehow, he did manage getting the license and interestingly within six months of getting the same, the Act was abolished. It was then that he started selling a wider range of diamond jewellery. By 1993, all the losses for operational and overhead debt amounting to around Rs 25 lakh to Rs 30 lakh were recovered. He says it was a turning point in his journey as after that Datwani bought the next door shop (adjoining my first outlet) and turned them both into a single outlet having a super built area of 550 sq.ft. investing around Rs 45 lakh, again with a borrowed amount.
The business and the sales tripled due to the strong customer base built till then.
Challenges, Current Retail Spread & Offerings
After getting the gold selling license, setting up a good back office was a key challenge initially as sales had grown manifold. Currently, he feels its difficult to grow and maintain the personalised touch intact.
At present, Anmol Jewellers has one store in Mumbai (Bandra) and an upcoming one in GK I, Delhi. Earlier there was a 800 sq.ft. store in Gurgaon which was shut down as Datwani felt his designs are more suited for South Delhi. The Delhi store will be 700 cover sq.ft.
Anmol’s diamond jewellery starts at Rs 25,000 and goes up to Rs 1.5 crore to Rs 2 crore. The price for the gold jewellery ranges between Rs 10,000 and Rs 25 lakh. Its average bill size stands at Rs 4 lakh to Rs 5 lakh. Anmol’s jewellery is made at a factory in Mumbai at Mahalaxmi.
The Road Ahead
Anmol will make an international foray in the next one and a half years, reveals Datwani. He adds that he might look at franchising options too. “I am expecting a sales growth of 20-25 percent this fiscal,” he concludes.