Describe yourself in three words?
Integrity, drive and passion.
When you were at school, what did you want to be and why?
I always planned on going into the family business when I left school making me the third generation of R Platnauer Ltd, over 25 years ago, and to carry on the tradition of jewellery manufacturing. I thought it was going to be easy, which was something of a shock.
How did you get to be where you are today?
I was very driven and wanted to prove to my father I could be as successful as him, though it was a very different time and market, margins were tighter and terms of trade with major high street and mail order customers were much tougher.
Which aspect of your job do you enjoy most and why?
My team and I created new collections in personalised and message jewellery, plus brands such as Jordan, Manchester United, Barbie and so on, all of which were very successful launches. At its height we had 120 people in the factory in Birmingham making products for Argos, H Samuel, and mail order TV companies. Sadly the market changed, volume decreased, the price of gold increased and imports flooded in from the Far East. That was the beginning of Wedds & Co over three years ago, which I set up with Andrew Evans, founder of Slimbrand. Wedds & Co is a pure British manufacturer of wedding rings, we make everything on site in Birmingham using the latest CNC equipment and setting techniques, and we now supply about 200 retailers with wedding rings.
What is your proudest achievement?
My proudest moments in life are the birth of my two children, who are eight and 13 years old.
What is the best advice you’ve been given in work or in life in general?
Always look at the downside of any new project. If you can live with it, go for it.
What is your next goal?
The goal is to increase our profile and market share by offering great pricing, quality British products, and friendly customer service. There are very exciting times ahead, we have bought a factory in Birmingham’s jewellery quarter right next door to the new Birmingham Assay Office and hope to move in early next year.