HOT 100 BUSINESS BIG SHOTS: Steve Bennett, CEO, Founder & Gemstone Hunter, Gemporia

Steve Bennett, CEO, founder and gem hunter, The Genuine Gemstone Company

The past year has seen Steve Bennett trotting the globe to bring his British brand to new shores. Having successfully launched a jewellery channel in India, he has now done the same in the USA, broadcasting live from Florida.

The size of the potential audience in these two countries is staggeringly huge, as Steve is well aware. “The population of India and the USA combined is more than 1.5 billion!” he says. And these new channels are key steps towards his ultimate aim in business.

“We believe that every woman on the planet deserves to wear a genuine gemstone and to be able to purchase nature’s treasures at a reasonable price, and these two new ventures certainly help us move closer to this goal. We will continue to go direct to source for our gemstones and offer an educated shopping experience to all of our customers,” he explains.

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But Steve’s work overseas has been about much more than brand expansion – he has also funded nine schools in Jaipur, India, which are now attended by more than 1,000 children, and has set up a gem-cutting school for the mothers of the youngsters.

“The skills of these new lapidarists are incredible. Having started out with no knowledge at all, they have become experts in just 24 months, and we have now employed 20 of them on a full-time basis,” he adds.

Back home, Steve and his wife and business partner Sarah have their own brood to care for. They recently welcomed their seventh addition to the family, as well as celebrating their eldest daughter’s marriage!

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