For one person, their Costco shopping list probably read like the following: Takis Fuego Tortilla Chips, Kirkland baby wipes, a new sweatshirt, and... a diamond ring? Yeah, you read that right. On Friday, Bloomberg reported Costco's quarterly sales were up from one pretty big jewelry purchase.
During a conference call with analysts, Costco's Chief Financial Officer Richard Galanti let it slip that the retailer sold a "significant diamond ring purchase, in the $400,000 range." He didn't provide any other details but after a little sleuthing, Bloomberg says the item may have been the "Round Brilliant 10.03 carat VS1 Clarity, 1 Color Diamond Platinum Solitude Ring," which retails for a cool $419,999.99.
The Costco exec was not shocked at this purchase, however, and during the call, he mentioned how the warehouse-retailer has become known for its hidden gems like luxury handbags and jewelry. As an added convenience, customers can shop online and then pick up the purchase in a designated locker inside a physical store. Currently, Costco's website lists Burberry handbags, Balmain sunglasses, and several diamond rings that cost more than $100,000.
According to CNBC, there are 94 million people who have a Costco membership card, in part because it feels exclusive to belong. “Since membership fees are a ‘sunk cost,’ consumers try to justify it mentally, which results in them shopping more frequently and buying more products each trip,” according to Kusum Ailawadi, author of a 2017 study on club shopping, tells CNBC. “You’ll say ... I’m going to make sure I get my money’s worth by shopping in the club store every chance I get" — and that includes shopping for diamonds, too.