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Industry News: Associations Ask For Retail Assistance; CBG Show’s New Dates; JA, JVC Offer Resources March 25, 2020 (0 comments)

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WJA, JA, and JVC Join NRF in Urging Government to Protect American Retailers

New York, NY—Jewelers of America, the Jewelers Vigilance Committee, and the Women’s Jewelry Association have joined 90 other retail industry trade groups in signing a National Retail Federation letter to the White House, urging the Trump administration to help retailers survive the economic ramifications of the coronavirus pandemic. Other similar communications have also been sent to the Department of the Treasury and Congress.

The letter states, “The economic harm from social distancing and mandatory store closures is real. Layoffs and economic hardship will surely follow, particularly for smaller, specialty retailers and brands. Federal stimulus efforts must be swift and flexible enough to address the urgent need for access to credit to keep these businesses afloat.”

The retail industry, and the associated suppliers they support, are suffering cumulative losses that amount to tens of billions of dollars every week. As the nation’s largest private-sector employer, supporting 52 million working Americans, retailers are committed to sustaining their workforce even if stores must close temporarily.

The 90 national and state retail organizations that signed onto the letter agree that the paramount issue facing the industry right now is liquidity. The groups urged policymakers to consider proposals that protect and preserve the economic health of the retail workforce and provide sufficient liquidity for small, medium and large-scale businesses to remain viable through until the end of the crisis. 

“While some retail businesses may be considered ‘essential’ and may be able to remain open, many will not. It is important that the stimulus package provide a bridge, not a bailout, that is flexible enough for retailers and related suppliers of any size,” the letter states. The letter and list of supporters is accessible here.

 

CBG Summer Show Postponed Until September

Las Vegas, NV—The Continental Buying Group’s annual summer show at Caesars Palace has been postponed from its original May dates until early September. 

In making the announcement last week, Andie Weinman, CEO, and Joe Murphy, COO, of Continental Buying Group and Preferred Jewelers International said, “We truly love our industry and our jewelry community. This is a time to be with family and not worrying about a jewelry show. CBG is not just a group or an organization, it’s family and family come first. We have been watching vigilantly what is progressing with COVID-19 and felt that the safety of all our suppliers and retailers was of the utmost importance.

After seeing the massive shutdowns all over the country to prevent the further spread of the virus, it was imperative for CBG to go into action to find a solution to keep everyone as safe as possible.

With our CBG Vegas show and JCK Las Vegas less than three months away, we felt it was our responsibility to be proactive. We did not feel the ‘wait and see’ approach taken by other jewelry tradeshows was an appropriate response. We could see that cancellations were going to be inevitable.”

CBG’s officials said that even if the virus is eradicated by late May, retailers and suppliers will still need time to regroup due to the slowdown in business the virus will inevitably cause. The new dates are Tuesday, September 8 through Thursday, September 10 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.

“By September, retailers should be able to regroup and be more focused on fourth-quarter business,” says Weinman. She added that as a member of CBG, you are never alone. 

CBG is communicating daily with its entire membership to assure them that the motto of the “Power Of One” not only remains to be true but you can feel the unity just by talking to any member of their organization. 

“This virus will not last forever. The markets will rebound. We must all remain positive and diligent in our own safety and the safety of others. We are stronger together,” she says. 

As part of the effort to help everyone cope, learn and be more prepared, CBG also is planning a full Educational Summit on September 11, following the last day of the event.

 

Missed JA’s Webinars Addressing Business In The Age Of Coronavirus? Listen Here.

New York, NY—Jewelers of America last week released a series of webinars addressing business challenges during the coronavirus pandemic, but if you missed any or all, not to worry. They’re available to listen to at any time via this link here. The page also features a robust list of other resources that can help small businesses in general and jewelers in particular.

The first webinar, held March 20, addressed security issues, especially as many state and local authorities have ordered the closing of all nonessential retail businesses. The webinar featured National Jewelereditor-in-chief Michelle Graff in conversation with Jewelers’ Security Alliance president John Kennedy. Click here to listen.

Three more sessions were held this week: On Tuesday, Tiffany Stevens, CEO and president of the Jewelers Vigilance Committeebroke down the different legal issues businesses need to address and the order to address them in, including employment, insurance (including UCC), retail leasing, relief, scams, cybersecurity, and global supply chain issues, and Emmanuel Raheb of SmartAge Solutions discussed 10 Tactical Ways to Grow Your Business During COVID-19, and another session addressed employment law and business issues, with David Kaufman, director of global strategies, and Hillary Baca, employment law attorney, at Nixon Peabody LLP. Click here to hear Stevens’ session and click here to hear Raheb’s session.

Finally, a Thursday session titled Use Social Platforms to Bond with Customers During Tough Times, will be held at 2 p.m. March 26. It features Andrè Savoie, CEO of High Level Thinkers. Click here to register. If you can’t register in time, listen to the archived version later. Click here and scroll down to the second-to-last paragraph of resources on the page.

JA president and CEO David J. Bonaparte said in the same statement, “The new additions to our webinar series will be critical for retail jewelers as they navigate the challenges presented by the coronavirus and its global impact.”

 

JVC Announces Launch of Dedicated Resource Webpage For COVID-19

New York, NY—As new COVID-19 developments surface, the Jewelers Vigilance Committee will monitor and share legal and business actions companies can take with our entire jewelry community. Starting Tuesday, JVC opened access to its resources through jvclegal.org to members and non-members alike. 

JVC’s new COVID-19 webpage jvclegal.org/covid19 will provide the jewelry community with access to helpful legal resources and breaking news to ensure the survival of their businesses and most importantly, stay healthy and safe during this pandemic.

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