By Christie Dang ; Translated by Chris Wong
Chia Ta Jewellery’s Yu Chung Ta cements his reputation as an intrepid industry leader through bold decisions and insightful initiatives.
Yu Chung Ta needs no introduction in Greater China’s jadeite circles. For over three decades, the founder of Taiwan’s Chia Ta Jewellery Co Ltd has adopted inventive and visionary business strategies to catapult himself to the forefront of a thriving and lucrative jewellery segment. In an interview, Yu shared with JNA the secret ingredients of his success.
He may rely on crutches for mobility, but Yu’s physical disability has never shaken his resolve to become a great entrepreneur. Over the years, his passion for magnificent jewellery and gemstones, his determination to overcome any challenge, and his strong business acumen have led him to success.
The jeweller’s sincerity, honesty and ability to keep his promises when doing business also earned him the trust and respect of his clients and business partners. The company, now in the hands of the second generation, has a solid business network across the Greater China region, with branch offices and stores in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Shanghai and Beijing.
Following the launch of its new store in Taipei, Taiwan last year, Chia Ta Jewellery reached another milestone in its expansion in China this July – the opening of its flagship store in Beijing.
“The jewellery retail market has been fluctuating a lot in recent years, especially for the jadeite sector,” said Yu. “Many jewellers are worried about prospects and have therefore become more conservative. I however believe the market is still there, particularly for high jewellery. In my opinion, as long as the product is of superlative quality, there is no need to worry about demand.”
As the chairman of various jewellery councils and associations, Yu has a pulse on the market and the industry. To him, jewellers should have the right mindset and take the long-term view rather than focusing solely on immediate and personal interest.
Yu cited clear goals, vision, courage and timing as vital components of a successful business in the gemstone trade. According to the jeweller, he built his career on ingenious business decisions where he went against the norm, such as opening new stores or investing in expensive gemstones in bulk amid weak market sentiment.
His dedication and hard work are reflected in Chia Ta Jewellery’s pieces, which result from comprehensive planning throughout the entire process from design and material selection to gem-setting, production and marketing. The company’s jewellery pieces are thus always highly sought after by clients and buyers, including leading auction houses.
Chia Ta Jewellery celebrated its 35th anniversary in 2016. While Yu is extremely pleased with the company’s achievements, he remains fully focused on what lies ahead.
“Our past experience and achievements have laid a solid foundation for our future development,” he remarked. “The current market situation is a good opportunity for jewellers to learn to adapt to a changing business environment. Good-quality products are essential to boost sales,” noted the company official.
Over a year ago, Yu came across a batch of rare top-quality jadeite cabochons. Investing in the stones could be perceived as risky since the market was extremely quiet at the time. But believing that demand for truly exceptional jadeite jewellery remained robust, Yu went for it. This turned out to be a smart move.
Chia Ta Jewellery unveiled its Eagle Collection last year, featuring jadeite jewellery pieces that allude to the confidence, calm and elegance of the mighty birds. Upon the launch, many of the pieces were quickly snapped up by private collectors, demonstrating once again Yu’s foresight and business savvy in transforming the cabochons into unique and grand jadeite jewellery pieces.