Cape Town - Shimansky Collection, a jewellery retailer based in Cape Town's Waterfront, is planning to expand its retail presence into Asia.

The company plans to open two stores in Macau in October and November and to follow these up with another six stores elsewhere within eighteen months.

The retailer estimates the cost of the expansion at R150 million, and says it will be part of a plan that will see it expanding into other luxury goods lines such as leather, fragrances and fashion.

Yair Shimansky, Chief Executive of the Shimansky Collection, said on Tuesday that the market is currently very buoyant and growing more rapidly than the European and American markets, with a predicted annual growth of 10 percent in GDP over the next 10 to 15 years.

"We're very optimistic about opportunities in Asia, which currently consumes 25 percent of the world's luxury market goods," Shimansky said. "Shopping for higher price point purchases is less seasonal in Asia, which favours a luxury goods manufacturer."

Anticipating increased demand, Shimansky recently opened a second diamond cutting and polishing factory in Johannesburg to supply South African diamonds worth an estimated R50 million per year to its new stores. In addition, the company is in the process of establishing a second jewelry design and manufacturing division in Cape Town using diamonds being manufactured in South Africa.

"No other local luxury jeweller has broken into the international market. Now, with a South African company selling South African diamonds internationally, it will further enhance the image and quality standards of our industry," he said. - I-Net Bridge