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Succession/Transition a Hot Topic for IJO Members




(PRESS RELEASE) SOUTHPORT, CT – The Independent Jewelers Organization (IJO) holds two conferences annually for buying, education and networking.  One topic that seems to have moved to the forefront is the succession or transition of a retail jewelry store.  According to Jeff Roberts, President and CEO of IJO, one should not proceed into the closing or changing of hands of a store blindly.  “There’s help out there to make these important changes painless and profitable,” Roberts says.

IJO will be offering a Panel Discussion on Succession/Transition at their next conference March 10-13 at the Marriott Marquis in Houston.  Roberts continues, “The Panel that we will be offering in Houston will consist of four actual examples, with both the buyers & sellers present, who will discuss how they transitioned (sold) their stores, what they did to make it happen, how they structured their deals as well as all of the other details of their transitions. This double session will also include adequate time for questions of which I am sure there will be plenty.”

Panelists will include two stores who sold to a family member, one who sold to an employee and one who sold to an outside buyer. The stores represented include Chuck and Charles Smith (son/father), Morrison Smith Jewelers, Charlotte, NC, Troy Gibson (buyer) and Dan Ingrum (seller), Danz Jewelers, Lodi, CA, Stephen (buyer) and Doyce Barnes (seller), Barnes Jewelers, Goldsboro, NC, and Kelly and Doug Glennon (buyers) and Linda Hagan (seller), Jewelry Creations, Dover, NH.

IJO is also excited to announce that distinguished graduate of the U.S. Air Force Fighter Weapons (Top Gun) School Astronaut and author Rick Searfoss will be the featured keynote speaker in General Session.  With his exciting and unique stories, this Space Shuttle Commander’s mission is to share the leadership, execution excellence, teamwork and innovation lessons of human space flight to empower organizations to achieve the highest level of performance, producing out-of-this-world results.  Rick is certain to inspire all attendees.

IJO stresses the importance of education and the rest of the business program is shaping up to be one of the best and will open for registration shortly.  For information on membership please call Penny Palmer at 800-624-9252.


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The store was a landmark in Topeka, Kansas, but after 80 years in business, it was time for Briman’s Leading Jewelers to close up shop. Third generation jeweler and owner Rob Briman says the decision wasn’t easy, but the sale that followed was — all thanks to Wilkerson. Briman had decided a year prior to the summer 2020 sale that he wanted to retire. With a pandemic in full force, he had plenty of questions and concerns. “We had no real way to know if we were going to be successful or have a failure on our hands,” says Briman. “We didn’t know what to expect.” But with Wilkerson in charge, the experience was “fantastic” and now there’s plenty of time for relaxing and enjoying a more secure retirement. “I would recommend Wilkerson to any retailer considering a going-out-of-business sale,” says Briman. “They’ll help you reach your financial goal. Our experience was a tremendous success.”

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