Despite the current financial crisis, Cristian Lay has become the largest manufacture in Europe of costume jewelry, and one-third of Spain’s exports of these pieces in 2009 carried the seal of this firm. Its international push has led to one-third of its sales going abroad (nearly €50 million), compared to the €152.3 million that Spain exported last year.
Cristian Lay has stood out, from its beginnings in 1981, as one of the Spanish companies in the costume jewelry sector that sells its products around the world. Through its unique business system (based on catalog sales), this Extremadura-based multinational, located in town of Jerez de los Caballeros, Badajoz, has expanded across three continents: Europe, Africa and America. With over 13 million articles sold and a network of collaborators made up of 100,000 people, Cristian Lay’s sales last year reached €180 million.
Present in Latin America (specifically in Mexico, Chile, Puerto Rico, Costa Rica, Panama, Venezuela and Columbia), Europe (Portugal, Italy, Croatia, Czech Republic and Poland) and North Africa (Morocco and Tunisia), the Extremadura-based multinational plans to open 25 shops in China in the coming three years, with further plans to enter the American, British, Indian and Saudi Arabian markets.
From its beginnings, the company has expanded its product lines around the world of jewelry, currently offering watches, cosmetics, fashion and accessories. Cristian Lay, managed by Miguel Ángel Leal, has received in recent years major international recognition, with the goal of reaching 350,000 orders every 21 days by 2013. Its success is due basically to its internationalization strategy, continuously opening new markets and controlling, from beginning to end, the production and distribution process. Its extensive network of collaborators around the world makes it possible to distribute products directly from the manufacturer to the consumer, without intermediaries, offering quality jewelry at very competitive prices.
At the cutting edge of the latest trends in fashion, the Cristian Lay collections are characterized by being unique, with an avant-garde design and their own style. The firm has collaborators in recognized designers such as Javier Larrainzar and Candelas Sastre, who, together with Miguel Ángel Leal and the young designer Elena Tablada, have created for the company in recent seasons jewels that combine the concepts of cheek and avant-garde with elegance and sophistication.
Spanish costume jewelry ‘shines’ in times of crisis
The costume jewelry in Spain has a long tradition, which in the past was linked to artisan production and delicate work in metals such as silver in different regions of Spain. Today, the costume jewelry industry is a consolidated sector, employing over 3,000 people directly or indirectly.
According to data made available to the Spanish Institute for Foreign Trade (ICEX), the Spanish creations in the costume jewelry sector, despite major international competition, have maintained their position in 2009, with a 4.1% increase in exports valued at €152.3 million. Our leading buyers include Mexico, the United States and Japan, as the main receivers of our products. The Spanish companies have made an effort to adapt to these challenges by seeking out new markets, new marketing and production formulas and new design trends.