RAPAPORT… ABN Amro Bank signed on to sponsor the upcoming Jewelry Industry Summit, which is scheduled for March 10 to 13, 2016 in New York City. The event’s first corporate sponsor was the JA New York Show. The Jewelry Industry Summit is designed as an interactive workshop intended to drive discussions on sustainability and responsible sourcing. Event organizers anticipate creating awareness of supply chain challenges in order to take action that benefits the jewelry industry as a whole, while creating growth opportunities and new sources of value for suppliers and the consumer.
Erik A. Jens, the head of diamond jewelry clients at ABN Amro, said, “ABN Amro’s sustainability strategy is: a better bank contributing to a better world. We see that our clients generate business opportunities by implementing sustainability in their core strategy. The Jewelry Industry Summit will be an opportunity to welcome all stakeholders in our industry to engage in actions to bring responsible sourcing into their daily business practices in an easily accessible manner – good for business and good for our customers.”
The venue for the summit will be decided later, but the event is scheduled in advance of the JA New York March jewelry show at the Javits Center. Summit attendees will also gain entry to the trade show via their registration.
Organizers have been conducting a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo.com and have raised $11,735, which included donations and a number of early registrations. Eric Braunwart of Columbia Gem House, who is a member of the planning committee, said, “This grassroots funding for the summit is very gratifying. And the committee was happy to see early registrations for the summit. These funds will assist us in setting the agenda and engaging with the professional facilitators who will lead the summit attendees to achieve the goals of the summit: education about current programs and an open discussion considering new ideas to ensure broad engagement in responsible sourcing.”
In addition to Braunwart, the planning committee members include: Ann Arnold of BIG – Buyers Intelligence Group, Lita Asscher of Royal Asscher, Anna Bario of Bario Neal, Robert Bentley of Robert Bentley Company, Mihir Bhansali of Firestar Diamond Inc., Edward Boehm of Rare Source, David Bouffard of Signet Jewelers Ltd., Lisa Bridge of Ben Bridge Jeweler, Bruce Bridges of Bridges Tsavorite, Brandee Dallow of Rio Tinto Diamonds, Bill Farmer of Farmer’s Jewelry, Jeffrey Fischer of Fischer Diamonds Inc., Rebecca Foerster of Leo Schachter Diamonds, Karen Goracke of Borsheim’s, Stewart Grice of Hoover and Strong, Mark Hanna of Richline, Hayley Henning of True North Gems and Steve Hodgkins of Rolex USA.