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2022 will be ‘the year of the wedding’: Brilliant Earth CEO

Brilliant Earth Co-founder and CEO Beth Gerstein joins Yahoo Finance Live to discuss holiday shopping trends for jewelry and weighs in with 2022 predictions for the wedding planning industry.

Video Transcript

BRIAN SOZZI: Shares of online jeweler Brilliant Earth have been shining brightly since the company's late September IPO. The company priced its IPO at $12 a share, and the stock is now trading at nearly $19 a share. That's a gain of 58% if you crunch the numbers, like I did. Brilliant Earth, the co-founder and CEO, Beth Gerstein, is back with us. Beth, good to see you here. So we're smack in the middle of the holiday shopping season. How is your business trending?

BETH GERSTEIN: We're so excited about the holiday season. We have the largest product assortment. It's such a special time of year. And because of our investments with omnichannel and the digital experience, we are really well-poised and I think just so excited to share the special moments with our consumers. They're really, I think, in a great place. They're getting engaged. They're sharing special moments. They're, I think, really invested in our mission. And just generally, I think after a few challenging years, they're excited to really treat themselves and be able to share the special moment and buy meaningful jewelry. So I think it's an exciting time.

BRIAN CHEUNG: Hey, Beth, Brian Cheung here. I want to ask about trends that you're seeing in the industry. What was kind of interesting to me was kind of weddings. A lot of weddings were postponed during the pandemic, kind of moved to 2021. How does that affect jewelry trends when it comes to getting a wedding band? Are you seeing any sort of change pulling forward now of maybe weddings that people or engagements that happened in 2020 that people are now scheduling weddings for 2021 or early 2022? What are you seeing on that front?

BETH GERSTEIN: I think that, yeah, people are talking about next year as the year of the wedding. It's the most weddings in decades. And I think that's just an added bonus. You know, the jewelry category, I think, has been very resilient throughout these last few years. And as customers are wanting to buy jewelry with meaning and wanting to buy enduring gifts for each other, I think that there's just added excitement there. And I think digital is also experiencing really strong growth, as is branded jewelry. So I think that overall, the jewelry categories are really well poised. And we specifically are very well poised. And certainly, it's a nice added bonus that so many of our customers are getting engaged.

JULIE HYMAN: And Beth, it's Julie here. Just to drill down into that a little bit more, full disclosure, I was at an event last night, which was a dressed up event. And it was so nice to see people dressed up and wearing fancy things again. And I just wonder in terms of your mix, how much of it are you seeing is sort of wedding band, engagement rings, et cetera? And how much of it is just sort of special jewelry for people that people, as you say, maybe are getting occasion jewelry?

BETH GERSTEIN: We see, I think, both aspects. And because fine jewelry for us is such a big growth category, we're just so excited to take our loyal customer and just continue to provide a really nice assortment to them. We see yellow gold being really trending right now, as are pearls. We also see really nice enthusiasm towards personalized jewelry, as customers are really buying gifts that are really tailored to them.

Our Zodiac collection, I think, is doing really well, and our Fairmined collection, which really gives back to collectives where gold mining is really given a fair value, more like a fair trade model. That's really exciting for us because it shows that customers really buy into our values. And that really resonates for that younger consumer. So I think jewelry is exciting, and I also think that certainly the fact that there are so many weddings and customers are really excited to finally get married, and as you said, go to those beautiful occasions where they can show off that jewelry.

BRIAN SOZZI: Beth, something caught my attention this week. Wayfair, a digital forward brand for many years, is now starting to open up some stores. Is that something you're looking at to reach more consumers over the next few years?

BETH GERSTEIN: We absolutely think omnichannel is the right model. And we've been doing omnichannel from the beginning. We had our San Francisco showroom in the early days. And we just opened our 15th showroom in Scottsdale. And we see that, especially with an emotionally resonant purchase, it's so important for customers to have the ability to shop however they want to shop. Some customers are going to want to go into a showroom. Some customers are really excited to buy online. And even knowing there's a showroom nearby helps to drive that customer engagement and revenue in the market.

So, definitely think that omnichannel makes a lot of sense. And we see a lot of strength in it. We're getting-- see it as a big growth factor for us as we get to that 100 showrooms, but right now, really seeing, I think, a strong model with omnichannel. So that doesn't surprise me that Wayfair is opening stores. And I think we've seen that with a lot of digitally native companies.

BRIAN SOZZI: Well, good luck for the rest of the holiday season. Brilliant co-founder and CEO Beth Gerstein, we'll talk to you soon.