Chinese Actress Ni Ni knocks out Robert Wan Pearl Auction

jshepherd

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A famous Chinese actress/influencer created a Tahitian pearl buying frenzy in Hong Kong last week, unlike anything I've seen in my 2+ decades of pearl buying. Chinese actress Ni Ni, best known for her role in the 2011 film Flowers of War, went on a Pearl-Wearing social media tour while promoting her summer film, Lost in the Stars. She loves to wear pearls, and In celebration of box office exceeding ¥3 billion, she posted 30 pearl selfies with an emphasis on Tahitians.

Ni Ni 30 Pearl Selfies emphasizing her favorites - Tahitian pearls

The day before the show started, Hisano and I bumped into friend from Tahiti at The Mira Hotel in Tsim Sha Tsui. We had communicated in the weeks prior and were planning to meet with him the first day of the show to review lots and select pearls for a Facebook Live event. But the show hadn't even started and he was out of pearls. Three buyers purchased 90% of the lots he had brought to the show, and other buyers were still contacting him.

When the show started, many booths were nearly overrun with crowds of buyers squeezed into every corner of the display cases. Some closed within the first hour on day one. They were completely sold out. Very near 100% of the buyers were Chinese.

A collection of fine multi-color Tahitian strands were being sold for nearly $50k in the 9-11 mm range and to nearly $100k in 12, with lab certificates. These are prices the industry hasn't seen since the early 1990s. And remember! This is wholesale. It's a trade-only event.

When the first show at Asia World Expo ends, the pearl auctions start. One of the most anticipated is the September Robert Wan auction. Many of the buyers and vendors alike planned to attend, and additional buyers fly in from around the world for the event.

On the last day of the show an announcement was made. The auction had been cancelled. One buyer from China had met with Robert Wan prior to the start of the auction and offered to purchase the entire auction for an all-cash premium - millions of dollars more than the anticipated auction results. As far as I know, this was a first for Wan :arms:

One influencer rocked the entire Tahitian pearl market, leaving the industry in shock.

Chinese Actress Ni Ni Tahitian pearls @captainmiao

Chinese Actress Ni Ni Tahitian pearls @captainmiao

Chinese Actress Ni Ni Tahitian pearls @captainmiao

Chinese Actress Ni Ni Tahitian pearls @captainmiao
 
Thanks for the update. We exhibited at the June Hong Kong show and the buying was already feverish then. I wonder if the buying frenzy will continue for the March 2024 show….
 
Happy to see all the hype about pearls. Sad to think of what this is doing to prices for us lowly consumers.o_O
Prices will go up for consumers. I think that is inevitable unfortunately. The positive side of this however is that the items in your collection will have also gone up in value….!
 
Thinking that I doubt I will be getting any more pearls. They are going to be out of my league since I have already covered 'nice pieces at a good price'. Good thing I bought most of what I really needed some years ago. But great news for the pearl farmers and the retailers :)
 
Great news for the farmers and wholesalers. I do wonder if there will be the retail market for those heavily premium priced pearls, once they get past the flush of influencers and luxury market retail customers. Will be interesting to watch; thanks for the behind the scenes info!
 
She’s actually been wearing pearls for a long time. From at least 2012. I remember reading an article years ago about always carrying a strand of pearls with her that she could pull out and dress up a bit if she needed to. (or something like that) She wore a small classic white strand a lot. She also wore Pearl Paradise pearls! There are several pics of her wearing earrings from PP’s Blossom collection. I thought she also had a little h ring. The circle of pearls, maybe? And another pair of earrings???

Attaching some pics, including wearing the PP earrings in most of them-
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I always liked the blossom setting, too.
 
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