In this episode of Women in Retail Talks, Women in Retail Leadership Circle Senior Content Strategist Ashley Chiaradio interviews Beth Gerstein, co-founder and CEO of Brilliant Earth, a global leader and retailer of ethically sourced fine jewelry. Listen in as Gerstein shares the story behind Brilliant Earth and how the brand offers an ethical alternative to the issues that plague traditional diamond jewelers. She discusses how the brand utilizes blockchain technology to provide supply chain transparency to consumers, why she feels that millennials have such a desire for ethical jewelry, and how sustainability is now table stakes for modern retail businesses. Brilliant Earth offers showrooms for customers to interact with its products, and Gerstein explains how these shoppers receive personalized service from jewelry specialists, who curate products specifically for individual shoppers. Lastly, Gerstein discusses Brilliant Earth’s nonprofit initiatives, including how the brand gives back to programs supporting human rights, education, environmental restoration and economic development in diamond mining communities, while also sharing how she sees the company growing in the future.
Beth Gerstein’s search for a responsibly sourced diamond engagement ring inspired the creation of Brilliant Earth, a global leader of ethically sourced fine jewelry and a leading e-commerce jeweler. When Beth became engaged, she and her then-fiancé struggled to find a jeweler that could assure them that a diamond was untainted by civil war and human rights abuses. Recognizing a gap in the market, she combined her passion for social enterprise and 10 years of technology and business development experience to co-found Brilliant Earth in 2005 with Eric Grossberg. Beth holds a B.S. from Duke University, a Masters in Electrical Engineering from MIT, and a M.B.A. from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business. Prior to Brilliant Earth, Beth worked in technology and business development roles at a number of large corporations, including Booz Allen & Hamilton. Eric and Beth also manage the company’s nonprofit initiatives, dedicated to investing 5 percent of Brilliant Earth’s profits in communities that have been impacted by the jewelry industry.
Date: March 10, 2020
Credits: Beth Gerstein
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