Bengaluru, April 18 (IANS) Hundreds of customers, especially women, made a beeline to gold and jewellery shops across the city on Wednesday to buy the glittering ornaments for celebrating Akshaya Tritiya festival.
“We have seen 10-15 per cent spike in sales due to Akshaya Tritiya and about 20 per cent increase in footfalls through the day, forcing us to keep our showroom open till 11 p.m.,” Malabar Gold & Diamonds manager Dileep told IANS here.
Aware of the sentiment attached to the auspicious occasion and the belief that buying gold on Akshaya Tritiya augurs well and brings fortune through the year, leading jewellery stores offered discounts, gifts, freebies and reduction in making charges to lure more customers and spur sales.
“The response has been in line with our expectations this time and more than last year when sales were affected by demonetisation and GST subsequently. Our sales pitch also helped us in drawing more customers,” said Dileep.
Though the day began with a few hundred customers showing up till afternoon, jewellery stores across the city witnessed steady footfalls by evening and heavy rush during the peak shopping hours.
“The footfalls were heavy on Tuesday evening and picked up on Wednesday post-noon. As more customers came to our stores later in the evening, we decided to remain open till 10.30 p.m.,” a Joyalukkas salesperson told IANS.
A sales manager of Navarthan Jewellers, which has six stores across the city, told IANS that prices of select gold ornaments have gone up to Rs 33,370-33,760 per 10 gm of 24 karat as demand surged after 4 p.m.
“Diamond jewellery is in good demand this time. Sales of bangles, necklaces and jhumkas also picked up during the day. Designer ornaments are preferred by young and middle age customers, mostly women,” said the manager.
Admitting that even young and modern women were of the belief that buying gold on Akshaya Tritya augured well and did not want to miss the occasion, the manager said average age of such customers was between 20-40 years.
“As we showcase a range of ornaments, in gold, platinum and silver with or without diamonds, we also get customers who are young, trendy, studying or working. They look for both modern and traditional designs.”
Retail price of 22 karat has also shot up to Rs 31,100 in branded stores like Kalyan Jewellers, P.C. Chandra Jewellers and Krishnaiah Chetty & Jewellers in the central business district.
“We performed well on Akshaya Tritiya compared to previous years, as the growth was much higher than expectation and jewellery sales growth was encouraging,” said Tanishq Vice-President (marketing & retail) Sandeep Kulhalli.
Coinciding with the festive season, many customers also bought wedding jewellery. The overall customer sentiment was positive in metros and the pick-up was also good in non-metros in line with expectations.
Average retail prices were in the range of Rs 32,011-32,570 per 10 gm for 24 karat and Rs 29,350-29,780 per 10 gam for 22 karat.
“Retail prices range depending on the locality of the gold and jewellery shops, with branded stores and showrooms quoting on higher side,” a bullion trader told IANS.
Bullion rates in the city were Rs 31,358 per 10 gm for 24 karat gold and Rs 29,320 per 10 gm for 22 karat, while silver 999 was Rs 31,358 per kg.