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Pandora is in the midst of a two-year turnaround plan that aims to “Reignite a Passion for Pandora” and includes the introduction of additional new product, like the “Reflextions” bracelet with clip-on charms that came out in November 2018.
Copenhagen, Denmark—Buying back inventory from wholesale partners and cutting back on both promotions and the size of sell-in packages are a few of the pieces of Pandora’s two-year turnaround plan.

Called Programme NOW and initially introduced in November, the plan’s next steps were outlined in detail Tuesday as Pandora also laid out what ails the company.  

The list of problems detailed likely will not surprise any jeweler who carries—or carried—the bead brand.

Pandora acknowledged that it has high brand awareness but no real identity.

Consumers are no longer excited by its beads, which it said are the “backbone” of the company.

That, in turn, has forced it to hold more sales to get rid of product that’s not moving—training consumers to never buy at full price—and left stores with a “cluttered assortment presentation” and a “build-up of inventory,” Pandora said.

In 2019, the Copenhagen-based company said it will cut back on the number of promotions between major gift-giving holidays and initiate an inventory buyback program in selected markets.

Though details on the buyback program are still being worked out, a Pandora spokesman told National Jeweler that the United States would be among those “selected markets” but the inventory “cleanup” will not be nearly as large as the buyback conducted in 2011-2012.

“It is also certain,” he noted, “that we will rely on our partners to jointly solve the challenge … As always, the U.S. will continue to do a garden cleaning in the spring as they have always done. Additional garden cleaning will be determined based on stock levels at a later date.”

Pandora also will reduce the price of its sell-in packages for retailers by 20 to 30 percent on average.

The plans announced earlier this week followed the November news that Pandora will pull back on concept store openings and stop buying back franchises from retailers.

In an interview published Feb. 1, Sid Keswani, the new head of the Americas for Pandora, told JCKOnline.com that the company considers its franchisees to be its “strong partners,” an apparent shift in strategy for a company once intent on cutting out retailers and running as much of its global store network as possible. 

Also planned for 2019 are a rebranding, new advertising campaign, another new bracelet following the fall 2018 introduction of “Reflextions,” creation of an online bracelet builder and the debut of a new store concept.

Details on the next steps in Pandora’s turnaround plan were released alongside 2018 results COO Jeremy Schwartz,who is running the company alongside CFO Anders Boyers until a new CEO is found, termed “disappointing.”

The bead and jewelry brand saw worldwide like-for-like sales slip 4 percent year-over-year, including a 7 percent drop in the fourth quarter.

Total sales hit DKK 22.8 billion ($3.47 billion), up 3 percent year-over-year.

In the U.S., which is Pandora’s largest market, like-for-like sales were flat while total sales declined 5 percent to DKK 4.88 billion ($743.2 million).

New concept stores—Pandora opened 67 in the U.S. last year—and online sales drove revenue, while physical stores continued to struggle and jewelers who carry Pandora either cut back on their inventory or dropped the brand entirely.

The Copenhagen-based company forecasts a revenue decline of 3 to 7 percent for 2019.


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