Fine jewelry store Mejuri has opened its second location in Canada, in Kitsilano, with plans for continued expansion.
It is the retailers’ eighth location overall.
Co-founder and President Majed Masad said the company knew it wanted to be among some of the top retailers in Vancouver – in Kitsilano specifically, there are many fashion and lifestyle shops and yet it still has a neighbourhood feel.
“We know that our customers – and tourists too – tend to flock to Kitsilano for its down-to-earth vibe, its proximity to the beach, and plethora of emerging and established brands. We really look forward to building and connecting with our West Coast community in real life through our in store experiences and events,” said Masad.
“Vancouver is one of our top cities in Canada, and our customers have been messaging us on social media to come. We did a pop up in Vancouver in 2019 that also validated the need to have a retail presence. The pop up drove strong customer acquisition where 75 per cent of the customers were new to the brand and we saw a lift in online sales in the city.”
Other stores include Toronto, New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, Austin, and London UK.
“While we started as a digital-first brand, physical retail is a natural fit for our brand and category. We definitely plan to expand more in Canada and the US in the years to come and are excited to share more details as we finalize our plans,” explained Masad.
“My partner in work and life, Noura, is a third generation jeweller and saw how traditional fine jewelry can be – typically gifted and marketed for men to buy for women. We also saw how archaic the industry is with outdated supply chains and inflated markups. We wanted to create the next generation brand and flip the narrative to self-purchase or as we say at Mejuri, ‘buy yourself the damn diamond’.
“In 2015, we started Mejuri to provide fine jewelry for every day. Though we are digital first, we wanted to create a space where our community could not only interact with our products but with each other. We opened our first store in July 2018, in our hometown of Toronto – we followed up with opening our New York store later that year. We found that bringing our brand to life in the form of retail has been a strong customer acquisition channel for us and great for loyalty, leading us to expand our retail footprint. In addition to opening eight stores, we have shipped over two million pieces of jewelry and have reached over one million customers since inception.”
He said the jewelry industry is quite large, however, the retailer believes there is room for various businesses to co-exist and grow. Mejuri was created to put a modern spin on an old industry through high-quality craftsmanship and the best materials, timeless yet fresh designs, fair pricing, meaningful stories and an authentic sense of community.
“We were one of the first brands to launch as a direct to consumer fine jewelry platform and we pioneered the weekly drop model in fine jewelry. We also created a strong in-house team who oversee everything from creative to product design, marketing and technology, customer service and even distribution. This allows us to own the customer experience from start to finish, and cultivate strong engagement with our customers across all channels,” he said.
“Most importantly, our brand ethos – of empowering individuals and celebrating ourselves and one another – hasn’t changed since day one and continues to empower our customers every time they shop with us, visit us in store, attend a community event or give back via our Empowerment Fund. We introduced the Empowerment Fund in June 2020 to support women and non-binary individuals with the tools to empower themselves, and the feedback has been incredible.”
Masad said the past year during the pandemic has challenged everyone since it’s a situation that we haven’t experienced before on any level.
“We were one of the first brands to close our retail stores, and as a team, we had to be creative and resilient. We recognized that this was an opportunity to innovate and adapt, and offer our customers a valuable shopping experience. We did this by doubling down on our online experience, creating a better omnichannel experience (i.e. Buy Online and Pickup in Store), and focusing on adding value through giving back to the community,” he said.
“The shift towards e-commerce encouraged us to focus on our online experience even further so that we could sustain a meaningful relationship with our customers during this time. For example, we focused heavily on our Style Edit, a platform where we feature creatives and industry people that share styling advice so that we could continue to inspire our customers and show them the many ways to wear and stack our jewelry. We also offered even more digital styling appointments, so that our customers could have real-time interactions with our team during the pandemic and get styling advice to help them shop.
“We noticed an increase in people buying themselves jewelry during this time, and buying jewelry as gifts. In fact, we saw a 66 per cent increase in gifting during the pandemic. Since people couldn’t be with one another, they turned to jewelry to make remote and more personalized connections.”
Masad added that customers really relied on Mejuri to create positive changes as its platform grew.
“We have always felt a responsibility to do so, whether it’s through the content we create, the voices we amplify, or where we are investing back into our community,” he said.