Sabina Belli, Pomellato’s CEO since 2015, recalls the fundamentals of the House’s identity and explains its development strategy, from the launch of its High Jewelry line to an international expansion.
What makes Pomellato so unique?
Sabina Belli: To understand Pomellato, we must go back to the time of its creation by Pino Rabolini. In Milan, in 1967, there was a tremendous creative effervescence, a movement of student revolutions and women’s emancipation throughout Europe. It was in that unique environment that a modern vision of jewelry was born, introducing the notion of ready-to-wear, much like what was happening in fashion at the time. This vision was expressed through “accessible” jewelry that could be worn every day, with a modern and colorful style, creations that were designed from the start for self-reliant, independent women who were free to buy their own jewelry. This drive and these founding values still remain today, and resonate even more broadly. They are the core of our positioning and our growth strategy.
What is the House’s development strategy?
Today, we want to expand the House beyond its traditional boundaries because its positioning is more relevant than ever. In concrete terms, Pomellato is reaching out to more women in Europe and around the world. In addition, our customers have grown up, as has their purchasing power. We need to work with this change, reaching out to their daughters and, of course, to women who do not yet know our House. Our growth strategy is based on two axes: expanding our network of international stores, particularly in Asia, and extending our range “upwards” by developing High Jewelry.
Of course, we have high hopes for the Chinese market. We have opened several stores there over the past few years, and will continue to do so. At the same time, moving upmarket is both an essential strategy and a virtuous spiral. The launch of High Jewelry in 2020 marked an essential step, while also being a natural extension of our development dynamic: the legitimacy acquired by the House over the years allowed us to make such a decision.
What led you to that decision?
Pomellato’s launch into High Jewelry was the product of exceptional circumstances, an opportunity that we were able to pursue, and the result of the natural evolution of the House over recent years. The past few years, Pomellato’s range has evolved around the idea of “upscaling” existing lines by offering increasingly more elaborate pieces. This was in response to customer demand, which showed us that they were ready to follow the House into larger, more sophisticated pieces, particularly those incorporating diamonds and rare gems. When the pandemic slowed down our production facilities in 2020, we decided to use the time and our exceptional workforce—110 master goldsmiths in the heart of Milan—to explore new possibilities. That was how our first High Jewelry collection was created. The guiding principle was to adopt the codes and the strong aesthetic features of the House while making them even more precious and desirable through the use of goldsmithing and stones. Despite the unprecedented health situation, which led to many sales outlets being closed, the success far exceeded our expectations; many of these exceptional pieces were even sold remotely!
What does High Jewelry represent for Pomellato’s future?
Following the success of our first High Jewelry collection, we wanted to extend the experience and expand the initiative. The pieces unveiled last July are not a new collection, but rather the second chapter of La Gioia. They are the product of two creative approaches. On the one hand, there are pieces that echo one of Pomellato’s great specialties, chains and chain bracelets, which are types of jewelry that have little been used in High Jewelry until now. On the other, there are jewels created from our heritage jewelry pieces, which have been reinvented, taken apart, and re-imagined in a different form. This particularly bold creative choice echoes the sustainable development strategy of both our House and of Kering. Emphasizing the timeless nature of luxury, this approach, which has become popular in fashion, is a first in the history of 21st-century jewelry. Never before has a House dared to integrate its heritage jewelry into a contemporary collection! Once again, Pomellato is staying true to its values, shaking up the codes and breathing new life into the classic world of High Jewelry. The success of La Gioia has inspired us to go even further. With its entry into High Jewelry, Pomellato has taken a strategic step, definitively changing direction. Today, our company is undergoing a true transformation.