HBA: What is your vision for Mouawad?
PM: Since my brothers and I took over the family business in 2010 we have moved Mouawad from being a multi-brand store into a diamond house focused on exceptional jewellery masterpieces. Today it’s clear to us that we want to stay in the diamond world and focus on our historical strength, which is the high-end part of the market that caters to elite clients.
Today it is becoming more difficult to compete with the many of the luxury European houses when it is just a fight for awareness. It’s actually very easy to create a US $10,000 piece, but it becomes much more difficult to source and cut exceptional diamonds for high-end pieces, which is what Mouawad does so well.
La Marquise diamond set, Mouawad
HBA: Can you tell us about some of your diamonds?
PM: In addition to being De Beers sightholders we source our diamonds across the market, such as from auctions and our own clients who want to sell. Wherever we can get our hands on exceptional diamonds we do!
For example, we have this incredible 111.11-carat Fancy Vivid Yellow diamond, which is the largest modified pear-shape of this colour anywhere in the world. It’s called the Kimberley Star, and this is a unique one-of-a-kind piece that perfectly illustrates our place in the market today.
The Kimberley Star will end up in a set, but it could take another two years before we see it as we are still sourcing the additional diamonds for the other pieces. Once it’s finished, however, it will be an exceptional one-off set with a price tag of around US $60million.
The Kimbelery Star weighs 111.11 carats and is the largest diamond in the world of this colour and shape
HBA: What about Mouwad’s other creations?
PM: Within our Classics range we offer diamonds from as little as a quarter of a carat, so we do supply a very wide range for diamonds despite this focus on high jewellery masterpieces.
This is the same for Mouawad Timepieces. I do not think that the watch market is a strong one in the long run, considering what’s happening with technology and all the smart watches and mobile devices to read the time from. I believe only a handful of brands will stay around.
Therefore our strategy with watches is the same as jewellery, with a focus on high-end masterpieces. Take our beautiful new tourbillon timepiece: it’s a unique watch created in Switzerland with Mouawad’s own movement and a special combination of stones. This sells for over US $1million and, in my opinion, is a piece of art that tells the time.
The Galaxy GE timepiece by Mouawad with rubies and diamonds
HBA: What do you think makes Mouawad stand out compared to other jewellery brands?
PM: Mouawad stands out for two reasons: exceptional design and value. We’re a fully integrated company and oversee all our processes, from sourcing rough stones to our in-house design team and workshop. The fact that we can take pieces directly from our manufacturer to the boutique without any middlemen means that we have very competitive prices.
Pascal Mouawad is the fourth generation Co-Guardian of the jewellery house
HBA: Why is the Middle East important to Mouawad?
People still buy exceptional jewellery here. Ladies in the Middle East want to to buy a diamond for security and beauty, it’s part of the culture. Mouawad has been here for over a century – we’re an international brand but our origins are Middle Eastern and therefore we want to continue focusing on markets such as here where we’re strong and recognised for our high jewellery designs and superior luxury.