business

Ginza store gives away 5,000 diamonds for free

19 Comments

French jewelry store Mauboussin on Monday morning handed out small 0.1 carat diamonds, worth 5,000 yen each, for free. A long queue formed in front of the store before its opening at 9 a.m., and the stock of 5,000 diamonds quickly ran out before noon.

This event was held for the brand's promotion as customers are reducing the amount they spend on luxury jewelry in the current economic downturn.

For customers who want their free diamonds to be made into rings or pendants, the store is accepting such requests -- for a fee of 50,000 yen.

"A value of a diamond doesn't go down. And you never get tired of a diamond," said Noriko Suzumaru, a 39-year-old housewife, who jumped on a train from the nearby city of Kawasaki to stand in line after seeing the deal on TV news.

Established in 1827, Mauboussin has six stores in Japan, with the Ginza store having opened this February. The flagship Ginza store is on one of the most expensive pieces of real estate in Japan, in February.

But the store had often been empty because its name, though associated with international celebrities, isn't widely recognized among Japanese. Many still don't even know how to pronounce Mauboussin ("Mo-bu-SAN").

Trend-loving Japanese have also stood in lines for products like Apple Inc's iPhone, the egg-shaped toy Tamagotchi and countless video games. So drawing lines in Tokyo has become a signature way businesses drum up publicity.

When Swedish clothing retailer Hennes & Mauritz, or H&M, opened its first Tokyo stores last year, they drew lines for weeks, but the lines have since disappeared.

"We hope to blow away the recession and provide an opportunity for people who are holding back on spending to have fun shopping and glow even more with beauty," Mauboussin said in a statement.

© News reports

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.


19 Comments
Login to comment

Oh no! I remember now why my girlfriend asked me to go to Ginza...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Very small at 0.1 carat, but hard like diamond.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I suppose this is one way to whip up interest in your products. Get the people hooked with their specks of dust (diamonds) and then have them pay through the nose for added value services (mounting these diamonds). Another interpretation might be that this is a press beat-up, similar to the one Golden Arches used when launching the QP with Cheese in Japan. Specifically, the "people" receiving the diamonds were actually paid to queue up, them "voluntarily" returning the diamonds after the media had packed up and gone home. In other words, the whole exercise might be a cut-price strategy for creating a buzz.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Altria: I bet my shirt it is industrial one anyways...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I think the 50,000 Yen fee more than covers what is probably a very "included" diamond....sneaky desho....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

handed out pieces of 0.1 carat diamonds

Perhaps you mean, "handed out 0.1 carat diamonds." "Pieces" makes is sound like the 0.1 carat diamonds were crushed and the smaller pieces were given out.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

0.1 carat and JPY 50k to be made into rings or pendants. Suckers!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

A company gives away free diamonds, and JT posters still find a way to whine about it. Unbelievable.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Can't believe it ,free diamond stuff, anybody here received one? It can just be another trade gimmick. Diamond value will go down when it has free competition ,not monopoly.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I notice you've always got something to whine about hokkaidoguy: JT posters.

Anyway, nice gimmick but I make that much in an hour so not even worth the time to queue. And what good is a tiny speck of diamond if it's not contained in a ring or pendant?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

At that price, 0.1 carat for 5000yen must have a ton of flaws in it... they gave them away because they couldn't sell them.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"people who are holding back on spending"

How selfish can one get?!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Anyway, nice gimmick but I make that much in an hour so not even worth the time to queue. And what good is a tiny speck of diamond if it's not contained in a ring or pendant?

I'll one-up you, cow 76. I make almost twice that in an hour. But if I had known they were giving out free diamonds, I would have been down there, queueing up to get one for my girlfriend for next Christmas present!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

At 5000 yen, it shows how much you're being overcharged in Japan for them to be able to afford such a stunt!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

50,000 yen to make something out of a 5,000 yen diamond? Crazy. The gold or fake gold is more expensive than the diamond. Nice gimmick. Japanese will stand in line for anything. Some I bet were just standing in line to stand in line.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Free is free, I'd get one just as a souvenir. People line up for swag worth a lot less all the time.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is awesome... Give before you take... Good business practice... But on the receiving end, I would hold back from ever getting anything for free (that is not a gift from family/relative), or cheapen myself by not paying the full price and always buying things on sale.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I make so much money that I would have lost cash standing in line and my wife would still have been pissed off because the stone was too small.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I was helping a friend with the very same Mauboussin promotion in New York (promotion was in Paris as well). It's a .10 H color SI clarity diamond, ideal cut... so to all you doubters, it's far from a worthless stone. H color - on a D to Z scale = Near Colorless SI clarity - Inclusions are easy to see under 10x magnification, but invisible to naked eye unless stone is muuuuch larger. You can leave with the diamond or can purchase a pre-set 18k white gold piece in several options (ring/earring/pendant/cufflinks)... to all you internet experts who drooled pessimist wisdom...there were guys from the NYC diamond district recruiting people in chinatown to go get the diamond, and than buying it off them for $20 outside the store...and our diamond district Hebrew friends know their stuff.

Mauboussin is not looking to make money on this promotion...the diamond giveaway costs them money..Operating since 1827, opened to public since 2005, so this is pretty much a publicity pull to catch up with the world-known competition(Cartier, Van Cleef)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites