Meet Benji Margolese, marketing and content manager for Leibish & Co., and one of the all-around nicest people I’ve had the pleasure of crossing paths with. With the first image of Leibish jewelry I saw, I was hooked. The company’s JCK Marketplace showroom is filled with beautiful colors and lovely designs — each custom-made and awe-inspiring. Read below to learn how the company (with one of the best happy hour traditions, in my opinion) came to be and gain a little insight into its colored diamond jewelry business. Then, venture over to JCK Marketplace to gawk at the company’s luxurious designs.
JCK Marketplace: Could you give me a brief history of Leibish & Co?
Benji Margolese: Our story begins in 1979, when a young man named Leibish Polnauer – a diamond polisher by trade – was on a London-bound train after the factory at which he worked had been shut down. Scanning the headlines of The Guardian, Leibish noticed a sales advert for a 6 ct. pear-shape brown diamond. A firm believer in shaping his own destiny, he made a phone call to the company. “For some reason they connected me to the general manager of the company – and I tried to sell him.”
With no existing stock of his own, Leibish offered his services as a diamond dealer. When he was offered the challenge of locating pear-shape diamonds for a wedding tiara, he did not hesitate. Flights to New York City and Tel Aviv and 60,000 British pounds later, Leibish found, presented, and sold those stones. “That was the beginning of my love for fancy shapes and fancy diamonds,” Leibish remembers. More than three decades later, Leibish & Co. is the leading source for natural colored diamonds and jewelry. In 1995, Leibish & Co. launched fancydiamonds.net in order to utilize the Internet as an effective sales, marketing, and service channel for our international customers. We’ve built a steady base of loyal international clientele who keep returning because we continuously exceed customer expectations.
JCK Marketplace: If you could sum up Leibish & Co. in just a few words, which would you choose?
BM: Fun, exciting, family-oriented.
JCK Marketplace: What is your favorite piece from your Marketplace showroom, and why?
BM: The Four Seasons diamond pendant. The thought, time, and effort invested in this piece was tremendous; as a result, the outcome is magnificent. The pendant contains five rare and highly valued fancy vivid colored diamonds: orange, blue-green, purple-pink, blue, and green. It was one of 10 items created for a special investment portfolio for one of our clients.
JCK Marketplace: If you could give one piece of advice to jewelry retailers, what would it be?
BM: If you are looking for profitable returns geared toward increasing your business earnings, consider investing in the unique colored diamonds market. Locate a company that already possesses inimitable assets, such as the knowledge of buying and pricing colored diamonds and knowing the right sources for purchasing the stones. The color diamond niche is very quickly gaining attraction and is performing extremely well in today’s jewelry market.
JCK Marketplace: What are you most looking forward to at JCK Las Vegas this year?
BM: The Leibish & Co. team attending the JCK Las Vegas show is excited to make new business contacts in the color diamond industry, and is looking to help spread the word of fancy color diamonds among the retailers and buyers to the show.
JCK Marketplace: What’s your drink of choice when happy hour rolls around?
BM: Everyone in the Leibish & Co. office gets together every day at about 3 p.m. in Leibish Polnauer’s office for a toast. I am therefore quite accustomed to single-malt Scotch and would definitely prefer that as my happy hour drink.