21 September JSN manufactures Canadian Ice Diamonds
JSN Jewellery Inc. was founded in Toronto in 1985 by Joseph Shilon shortly after he emigrated from Israel. A diamond cutter by trade, his dream to provide a great product at affordable pricing has become a reality and his passion in this pursuit has not waived. Joseph and his family left Georgia at a young age and entered into the jewellery trade when he was 15, as a diamond cutter in Israel, immigrating to Canada when he was 22.
After solidifying his place as one of Canada’s leading manufacturers, Mr. Shilon’s ambition drove him to international expansion in 1995. JSN has grown to the highest levels and is currently distributed in over 20 countries around the world. The Bangkok plant opened in 1996 making JSN one of the first Canadian manufacturers to produce offshore, pioneering a path that has been adapted by others years later.
The corporate Head Office is in Toronto. The USA, Thailand and UK offices provide sales and marketing support to all the company’s international customers. JSN’s recent expansion into Asia has lead to opening sales offices in Bangkok and Mumbai to help push sales to multi- millions.
The customer base resembles a “who’s who” list of the world’s leading jewellery retailers. Having the top multiples in all markets and hundreds of “A” list independent retailers leaves JSN with a healthy market balance and a résumé of which it is quite proud.
The Bangkok plant provides the strength to support all JSN’s markets. Far East pricing and capacity merges with Western customer service and marketing strategies. This “East/West” philosophy gives JSN a distinct advantage over its competition in today’s market, placing the company at the leading edge of its industry.
JSN is able to supply customers with a variety of categories ranging from entry level diamond and gem stone products to a fully-certified collection for the top end of the market; casting in 9kt, 10kt, 14kt, 18kt and Platinum.
It is one of the very few companies able to produce completely in-house diamond set electroforming jewellery from start to finish. It has developed its own brand and does private labelling for prominent jewellery houses in Europe as well.
To complete the JSN portfolio it became a Canadian diamond site holder, partnering with Harry Winston Diamond Corporation, who owns 40% of the Diavik mine. This allows JSN to control the diamonds from rough to finish cut stones, which will be finished as regular brilliant to fancy specialty.
JSN manufactures its own brand, Canadian Ice Diamonds™, as well as private labels for major retailers. The opening of its diamond cutting facility 18 months ago in Chiang Mai, gives it over 1,000 Thai workers. The company expects that this will meet the production needed as it expands its range into all of its established markets.
Canadian Ice – The Coolest Diamonds on Earth
Originating from the Diavik mine in the Northwest Territories, and mined through the Harry Winston Diamond Corporation, Canadian diamonds are world renowned for their exclusive colour and clarity. These diamonds are cut and polished in a state-of-the-art facility in the storied diamond cutting city of Chiang Mai.
Each diamond is individually certified and engraved with its own CID identification number to verify its Canadian origin. An international team of designers (led by Annalisa Cervi) has created a unique collection of stunning ring and jewellery with easily identifiable sophistication and freshness. Each piece is produced at the technologically advanced manufacturing facility in Bangkok.
With over two decades of experience in servicing leading jewellery retailers around the world, the company can cater to each client’s unique needs with personal attention and flexibility.
The JSN road team recently hit Bangkok in full force to attend the Bangkok Gems and Jewelry Fair to display Canadian Ice Diamonds™. On hand were CEO Joseph Shilon; Director of Sales & Marketing Steve Reale; Director of the Design Team Annalisa Cervi; Sales Manager of Utopia Jewelry Mona Chi, and Avi Sahar Managing Director of Bangkok operations. Ambassador Ron Hoffman cut the ribbon at the company’s booth at the Fair to formally open the company’s participation in the event.
Voyageur had a chance to chat with Steve Reale, who has worked with Joseph for over a decade now, and find out more about this fascinating company. Steve says that Joseph stayed away from the Canadian diamond market until he could become a site holder( direct to source of rough diamonds ) With the downturn of the Canadian economy, many people walked away from sites and companies like Harry Winston were looking for prospective site holders. By then, Joseph had emerged as a force in the business and let it be known that he was willing to open a diamond-cutting facility. The mines were looking for strong young companies to partner with so it was natural that Harry Winston would take an interest in JSN. (Harry Winston as mentioned, owns 40% of the Diavik Mine, the other 60% is owned by Rio Tinto). Joseph had met Bob Gannicott, Harry Winston’s CEO, years ago when Canadian diamonds were just emerging and he had also built up a relationship with Jim Pounds, Harry Winston’s Executive Vice-President.
Steve says that Joseph has been in manufacturing for 25 years now; starting off with a factory in Toronto. He started making trips to Thailand because as it was known as a Mecca for gemstones, but when Joseph realized the craftsmanship that was available here he started moving into the diamond business. His love for Thailand saw him open up a facility here (jewellery manufacturing), and Thailand’s skilled workers have helped him grow his business. When Joseph became a site holder, he was able to open his own diamond-cutting facility, cut and prepare his own diamonds and control his own destiny. As Joseph says, “Unless you control your own destiny, the market will shrink on you.”
Chiang Mai was a haven for apprentice diamond cutters, and although Joseph was told that to be competitive in the he would have to cut diamonds in China and India, he’s proven that you can cut diamonds in Thailand and be competitive with anyone, anywhere. As JSN participated in big jewellery fairs around the world like Baselworld it became obvious that the big retailers were looking to make direct contact with the manufacturer and JSN looked more like a wholesale division. So, Joseph set up Utopia and brought in Mona Chi to head the sales division. She comes from the high-end (gem stones).
What differentiates Canadian Ice from other Canadian site holders is Joseph’s experience. It is easy to put a stone in a basic mount, but to create a work of art, you need that manufacturing background. And the company’s manufacturing division in Thailand is a main reason for its rapid rise in the market. One of the world’s top jewellers recently visited Thailand to work with Joseph’s development team. “You have to be the best cutters,” Steve says, “we have 350 in Chiang Mai now, we hope to have 500 by early next year and 2,000 within a couple of years.
Summing up, Steve says, “People love that our diamonds are 100% conflict free and eco-friendly and finished by some of the world’s best cutters to create a masterpiece.”