Swarovski Strategy Pivot Debuts – The 126-year-old Austrian crystal company, Swarovski, has begun operations. In this case, the statutory regulations relate to certain groups of goods, causing confusion from both the business actor’s and consumer’s point of view. Even the industry sometimes has difficulty differentiating between Swarovski Consumer, Atelier Swarovski, Swarovski Elements and Daniel Swarovski.

Swarovski Strategy Pivot Debuts

Swarovski Strategy Pivot Debuts

swarovskijewelry – Appointing fashion designer Giovanna Engelbert (née Battaglia) as the brand’s creative director and elevating Robert Buchbauer from president and head of the consumer goods division to CEO, the family company, a global leader in fashion crystals, brings unity. Swarovski name product line.

At an embargoed press preview last month, journalists and editors were given an overview of the new collections under Engelbert and a glimpse into the company’s future. Last April, WWD reported that Nadja Swarovski, who is the face of the brand responsible for Atelier Swarovski and much of the brand’s philanthropy, was effectively relieved of her duties. Therefore, there are challenges in restructuring a growing and fragmented business.

However, if the changes ultimately come to fruition, it could only mean a healthier future for the sparkling crystal brand. The brand plans to revamp its website on April 1 to support Engelbert’s new vision and first collection. He also manages the design of selected flagship stores. Additionally, existing collections such as Atelier that follow the previous approach will eventually be phased out.

I recently interviewed Engelbert and Buchbauer about what to expect from Swarovski’s bright new future.

Giovanna Engelbert, Creative Director

First, I’d love to hear about your relationship with jewelry. How has that shaped your style? Can you share an anecdote or early memory about jewelry?

Engelbert: I am a jewelry lover; I love jewelry regardless of material. I have been collecting custom jewelry for years and I admire the NY women of the 50s, 60s and 70s who played with different types of jewelry just for fun. It doesn’t matter if it’s a plastic or ruby ​​bracelet, it’s all about self-expression and fun. I think good jewelry can be worn day or night, casual or glamorous, but it always hits the mark. I want to create songs for the most luxurious parts of ourselves that are waiting to be revealed.

How did you discover Swarovski in your styling career and how does it influence your work?

Engelbert: I have been with Swarovski since 2016 and it is a great honor to become Creative Director – my new role is a natural progression and now encompasses all creative aspects of Swarovski as a whole. But when I look back, all my experiences fall under the umbrella of one discipline: creativity – comprehensively. My work as a consultant allowed me to get to know show business, actors and singers, the fashion industry and finally all my knowledge of the last 20 years and unite it in one soul for Swarovski, a cross-industry and multidisciplinary company.

What was the most interesting thing you learned about crystals – how do they work? What surprised them?

Engelbert: Working with crystals is really fun. This is amazing, amazing material and I remind myself and my team every day. In addition to our Excel spreadsheets, production schedules and technical data, crystals are also amazing and fun. Working with crystals means working with light; You can create so many lights and prisms of these colors. There are endless possibilities with material that is full of emotion, but most importantly, joy. It always brings joy. And that’s actually what keeps me going every day, to be honest with you.

What was your first goal for this first collection?

Engelbert: Gives crystals a cooler and smarter dimension. I wanted to explore the pure beauty of crystals and how their glory is rooted in basic geometric and logical structures. This jewelry does not indicate a person’s wealth, but rather the ability to express oneself in a cool and fun way. Jewelry doesn’t have to be flashy; it can be fun and enjoyable as well as dictate and express our mood. My goal was to create a collection that was bold yet easily wearable. It’s a fun luxury that doesn’t feel forced, but is expressive and original.


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What do you like most about the design process? At least?

Engelbert: A famous jeweler once said: “Between the idea of ​​a piece of jewelry and the finished product, there are three liters of tears, 400 hours of screaming on the phone, endless letters, etc.” how do I feel Each section has countless details to think about and decisions to make with innovation in mind. The entire collection was an extraordinary challenge that Swarovski managed to realize even during the current Covid-19 pandemic, and this was not an easy task.

The jewelry also looks big and bold, which I think is a throwback to the jewelry of 10-15 years ago. What was your inspiration behind this direction?

Engelbert: Or maybe 20-30 years ago? The golden age of top models and all the VOGUE magazines. I was born and raised in the field of fashion, breathing it in from a very early age. Then Milan is the heart of fashion so it inspired me and still inspires me because Milan is still very important for fashion so there are moments where it gets crazy. But jewelry has always been a fashion mainstay – sometimes more, sometimes less – but still makes the look more interesting and fun.


In their presentation, your team mentioned transitioning to an accessible luxury approach. Will the pricing structure be changed?

Buchbauer: Swarovski is a company based on innovation and reinvention. For 126 years, we have remained true to our DNA as a brand, while continuing to evolve to meet the changing needs of an ever-changing world. We’re really trying to position Swarovski in the realm of accessible luxury. Therefore, these new models have greater perceived value in terms of volume, complexity and engineering compared to previous collections. However, many items, especially at the entry level, are comparable to similar price points in the past.

Do all retail stores today influence one Swarovski department? Will a new store open? Or will the current shops close because of this?

Buchbauer: A small percentage of stores will currently be closed, less than 20%, so that we can optimize our distribution network according to our new strategy. Creative Director Giovanna Engelbert redesigned 30 of our stores in key fashion cities such as Milan, Paris and New York to bring customers into her creative vision, coinciding with the launch of her first Swarovski jewelery collection. We look forward to a new chapter in our history, one that marks us as a true crystal lifestyle brand of the future.


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Will the change to a unified brand and new pricing structure for wholesale customers mean that some partners will expire when new wholesale accounts are opened?

Buchbauer: We have decided to retarget our wholesale network and focus on small segments in luxury, accessories and fashion in the future. We recognize that over the years there have been many partners who have been fans of Swarovski and played an important role in our history. We thank them for being with us in the past.

How does product bundling affect online stores?

Buchbauer: As part of the company’s overall vision and new growth strategy, we relaunched our Swarovski.com website, social channels and online store. This is a step by step that is just getting started. Additionally, strategic partnerships with online stores are planned to change brand perception and reach new consumers. And yes, the Covid-19 crisis has accelerated those changes, but the plans remain the same as before.

How do consumers find Wonderlab? Or is it a concept meant to be used as a marketing and sales tool?

Buchbauer: Wonderlab is an imaginary world where science and magic meet. This is the big idea and vision of the new Swarovski. This will be reflected and visible online and throughout the campaign in a variety of ways. One is the shop [designed by Engelbert], which is like an imaginary Wonderlab vault.