Industry & People: September–October 2017


DGSE Companies announced it has generated a nonbinding letter of ­intent to buy National Pawn, a 27-store pawnshop chain.

Movado Group has acquired JLB Brands, owner of the ­Olivia ­Burton brand, for £60 million ­(approximately $77.5 million). This purchase brings the watch company into the fashion jewelry category for the first time.


Tiffany & Co. has chosen as its new CEO Alessandro Bogliolo (pictured). He formerly served as the CEO of fashion brand Diesel as well as chief operating officer of Bulgari. He replaces Michael Kowalski, who was serving as interim CEO and remains chairman.

Former Tourneau executive vice president Andrew Block has been appointed president and partner of TrueFacet, the online marketplace for pre-owned watches and jewelry. In addition, Laurie Chan has joined the company as vice president of marketing.

Jewelers of America has named John Henne, president of Henne Jewelers in Pittsburgh, its new chairman. He succeeds Ryan Berg, market president of Lee Michaels Fine Jewelry.

Signet Jewelers has appointed credit and financial veteran R. Mark Graf as an independent director to its board. Graf is the chief financial officer of Discover Financial Services. He ­replaces Dale W. Hilpert, who is ­retiring for personal reasons.

Andrey Polyakov (pictured) has resigned as ­president of the World Diamond ­Council, which represents the industry in front of the Kimberley Process. This follows his resignation from Russian diamond miner Alrosa. He will be replaced by Stephane Fischler.

Lumondi, the Swiss watch ­company that oversees the Luminox and Mondaine brands, has named Marc Bernhardt its new North American CEO. Bernhardt previously served as managing director, North America, of watch brand IWC. 

Arthur Hewett (pictured), executive head of ­human resources at De Beers, is retiring after 25 years with the company.

J.C. Penney has hired Jeffrey Davis, most recently the chief financial officer for Darden Restaurants, to be its executive vice president and CFO. He succeeds Andrew Drexler, who had been serving as the department store chain’s interim CFO following
the resignation of Edward Record.

Georges Kern has been appointed CEO of Swiss watch brand Breitling. He was previously head of watchmaking, marketing and digital for Richemont.

Luxury Brand Group (LBG) has named Amanda Tropila (pictured, r.) public relations manager for its New York City office. She most recently served as PR manager for Platinum Guild International. She will specialize in jewelry. In May, LBG brought on Deanna Russo Clark (pictured, l.) as jewelry and ­accessories showroom manager for its West ­Hollywood, Calif., location.

Evgeny Agureev has been appointed director of Alrosa’s sales division, the United Selling Organization. Previously, he served as vice president of Sberbank.

Citychamp Watch and Jewelry has appointed Jérôme Biard director of its watch division. He takes over management of its Corum and Eterna brands.


Richard “Rick” Wolf, longtime salesman for the Royal Chain Group, died June 6 from natural causes. He was 68.

Iconic costume jewelry designer Kenneth Jay Lane died July 20 at age 85.

Kenneth Jay Lane glass and enamel alligator brooch; $225; The RealReal


Blue Nile will open a sixth webroom at the Mall at Rockingham Park in Salem, N.H., this fall.


Sears Holdings Corp. announced it will close 43 more stores—eight Sears stores and 35 Kmarts—by early October.


The American Gem Society ­honored Fred Meyer JewelersPeter Engel, ­Gumuchian’s Myriam ­Gumuchian, and the GIA’s Dr. James Shigley (pictured) at its annual Circle of Distinction gala on July 25 in New York City.

(KJL brooch: courtesy of The RealReal)

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