Cultured Pearl Association Gets New Nucleus

The newly elected president of the Cultured Pearl Association of America (CPAA), Armand Asher of Albert Asher South Sea Pearl in New York, says his first order of business is to help the organization become more visible. “First and foremost, we need to make the CPAA more recognizable,” says Asher. “We’ve been in existence for 45 years, and yet not all consumers and retailers know about us. Second order of business is to do what we’re supposed to do, and that is to promote cultured pearls, which includes education for the consumer and the retailer.

“Pearls currently represent too small a percentage of retail stores’ inventory,” notes Asher. “Obviously, our aim is to increase that number significantly.”

To help the organization reach its goals, its new officers drafted a vision statement: “The CPAA is a trade organization that is comprised of businesses and individuals whose goals are to maximize the use and awareness of cultured pearls in both the retail and wholesale U.S. markets.”

The board writes, “These objectives will be achieved primarily by raising funds from industry leaders and channeling the proceeds into well-focused public relations and advertising campaigns (including partnering with the worlds of fashion, entertainment, etc.).

“These strategies will re-energize the promotion of the cultured pearl and re-establish its status within the jewelry industry. The ultimate result will be a higher market share and an increase in sales of all cultured pearls.”

Asher notes that the CPAA is more than halfway to its goal of raising seed money for a number of promotional projects (public relations and advertising). These will include fashion shows, trade and consumer advertising, new informational brochures, and the new Associate Membership Program for retailers.

CPAA’s other officers include Sonny Sethi, Tara & Sons Inc., vice president; Alex Vock, Provockative Gems Inc., secretary; and Francis Mastoloni, Frank Mastoloni Sons Inc., treasurer.

For information, call Armand Asher at (212) 944-7230, e-mail: email@albertasherpearls.com.