There can be no better definition of a family business then the Warners. Parents Stephen and Alison were accountants but kids Andrew and Christopher wanted to get into retail. So together they set up Identity the Jewellers.
Over the past year they have posted strong sales, marketed themselves effectively and caught the eyes of the trade. That has meant taking on more premium brands, including a Hugo Boss shop in shop, which was installed in April, and the business also became the official Derby County Football Club timekeepers and Man of the Match sponsors.
That last one in particular has helped raise their profile locally. It must have also been a real thrill to this sporting family – dad Stephen played football for five decades, Andrew’s promising athletics career was only derailed by injury, Christopher once held dreams of becoming a tennis pro and mum Alison is an international hiker.
That sort of energy must come in useful when building a business, something that is at the forefront of this quartet’s ambitions as they strive to become the number one watch destination in Derby.
This year will see them open more shop-in-shop units following their successes with Boss and Bering. Andrew says: “It has to be for the right brands as it sharpens the consumers’ minds into what is in fashion or what is popular and creates a point of difference between us and the multiples. Why go to someone who stocks only a few of the watches when you can go to us who stock the full brand?”
It is just the sort of thinking that has pushed the Warners into the industry’s elite, even if they are pretty humble about it. As Andrew says: “We are extremely honoured to be amongst such important people in the watch industry in this country. It is also nice to think that our ideas and practises are being noticed by other people and businesses and is hopefully a true reflection of all our hard work.” And one of an extraordinarily harmonious and hard working family.
The Retail Titans category was sponsored by Bremont.
To see the full digital version of the WatchPro Hot 100 2013, click here.