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JA and BIJC Seek Participants for Emerging Jewelers Accelerator Program

Program currently seeking entrepreneurs looking to build and maintain successful businesses.




(PRESS RELEASE) NEW YORK — Black in Jewelry Coalition (BIJC) and Jewelers of America (JA) are seeking participants for their jointly developed Emerging Jewelers Accelerator Program (EJAP), a series of interactive workshops to provide selected new retail jewelry entrepreneurs with a deeper understanding of how to build and maintain a successful business in the jewelry industry.

The EJAP program, supported by the JCK Industry Fund, will consist of a cohort of five carefully selected retail jewelry entrepreneurs who will be lead through an eight-month long program of interactive workshops designed to help jewelry business succeed.

Participation is open to any business owner who has been in business from 2-5 years, owns a jewelry business that sells directly to consumers, has a business employer identification number (EIN), are 18 years of age or older and resides in the United States of America.

“Running a successful business in the jewelry industry isn’t for the faint of heart. We created the EJAP with Jewelers of America to provide tangible business assistance and access to ensure participants can navigate past challenges with greater ease,” says Black in Jewelry Coalition President Annie Doresca.

The Emerging Jewelers Accelerator Program Workshop curriculum will consist of business topics such as business strategy, HR/operations, product development/jewelry forensics, accounting, marketing & sales, legal, insurance and security, manufacturing, and ethical sourcing.

“Education access is paramount to success. Through the EJAP, our goal is to provide high-level content at no-cost and to help talented business owners have longevity in the jewelry industry,” says Jewelers of America President David Bonaparte.

Applications for the Subject Matter Experts and the Program Participants are both open until October 31, 2023. Information on the EJAP can be found on the Black in Jewelry Coalition’s website and Jewelers of America’s website.




When There’s No Succession Plan, Call Wilkerson

Bob Wesley, owner of Robert C. Wesley Jewelers in Scottsdale, Ariz., was a third-generation jeweler. When it was time to enjoy life on the other side of the counter, he weighed his options. His lease was nearing renewal time and with no succession plan, he decided it was time to call Wilkerson. There was plenty of inventory to sell and at first, says Wesley, he thought he might try to manage a sale himself. But he’s glad he didn’t. “There’s no way I could have done this as well as Wilkerson,” he says. Wilkerson took responsibility for the entire event, with every detail — from advertising to accounting — done, dusted and managed by the Wilkerson team. “It’s the complete package,” he says of the Wilkerson method of helping jewelers to easily go on to the next phase of their lives. “There’s no way any retailer can duplicate what they’ve done.”

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