Academic journal article Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies

Adams Jewelry

Academic journal article Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies

Adams Jewelry

Article excerpt


The primary subject matter of this case concerns the operational philosophy and actions of a small retail jewelry store. Secondary issues examined include the nature of the jewelry and diamond market, selecting an appropriate target market, developing a merchandise mix to satisfy target customers, pricing and promotion strategies for a small retail jeweler, and store location decisions. The case has a difficulty level of four, appropriate for senior level. The case is designed to be taught in one class hour and is expected to require one hour of outside preparation by students.


Jack Adams owns and manages an independent jewelry store in Florida. He is facing a number of issues concerning the store's competitive effectiveness in the local jewelry market. The immediate decision is whether he should move from his long-established store location. Although his store is not very up-to-date, it is in a high-traffic location and receives a lot of exposure. He caters to a middle class clientele, but fancies his business as a higher quality, upscale operation. Thus, there are issues of image and positioning in the local jewelry market among competitors. Other questions concern his lack of effective promotion activities and hours and days of operation. All of Jack's decisions relate to the issue of his customer service and marketing orientation. The case also incorporates global dimensions as it describes the nature of the diamond market.


Adams Jewelry is a moderate-sized jewelry store located on one of the busiest streets of a medium-sized town in Florida. Its location is at a very visible corner of a small strip mall on the west central side of the city. Its location is considered prime because it directly faces a very busy fourlane, U.S. highway running through the city. The town's population is around 100,000 with an MSA population of over 150,000.

Adams Jewelry started in 1995, when Jack Adams, at age 40, decided to leave Nashville, Tennessee where he worked for eighteen years as a jeweler, to move back to his hometown. Coming out of a divorce, Jack needed the financial help of his parents to buy an established local jewelry store for $15,000. The price included some inventory, jewelry display cabinets, and jewelry repair equipment. The purchase was considered an attractive deal for a store that was originally established in 1950. His parents co-signed for him at a local bank to help him obtain a credit line of $20,000 to help buy jewelry for inventory.

Jack is a very skillful jeweler in terms of fixing and even casting jewelry. Casting is the process of crafting jewelry from scratch. This includes custom creation of rings, bracelets, pendants, etc. However, Jack has an introvert's personality. He is normally a serious person. He arrives at work around 8:30 AM and stays until closing at 5:30 PM. His customers like him because he is very honest and does an excellent job creating and repairing jewelry. He rarely leaves the store during business hours. He always eats his lunch at the store. Jack likes to wear Bermuda shorts at work sometimes during weekdays and the weekends.

Although on a high-volume thoroughfare, Adams Jewelry is located in a 30-year-old Ushaped, strip shopping center. All of the center's tenants have turned over several times. The shopping center's anchor building (formerly a supermarket) is now a bingo parlor. The exterior of Adams' store is an out-of-style light brown brick with faded red canopies providing shade to two of several parking spots in front of the store. One of the awnings is torn. Jack and his mother park their vehicles in front of the store (under the covered parking) leaving customers to park elsewhere in the huge, largely unoccupied asphalt lot.

The large plate glass front windows of the store are covered with old, formerly white sheer curtains that have now been discolored by the sun to a light brown tone. …

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