EDF Congress to take place in Birmingham on 8th June 2016
BIRMINGHAM, England, March 28, 2016 – At the EDF Congress in Birmingham on 8 June, inspiring leaders, from both jewellery and non-jewellery industries, will be sharing their views on leadership, giving examples on how it manifests itself in their organisation and highlighting the three most important things they have personally learned about taking the controls.
“The EDF congress will inspire and encourage all business leaders within the jewellery industry whatever the size or type of business you run, and is open to both members and non-members of the NAJ,” said Michael Rawlinson, NAJ CEO.
“I would encourage everyone to give serious consideration to attending as the feedback we get from those attending is always very positive and tells us how valuable a day it was. And so that we make the most of the day, we will be holding the AGM straight after the congress followed by a networking reception. Everything is set for a fantastic day.”
Anna Blackburn – Beaverbrooks
Anna joined Beaverbrooks the Jewellers as a graduate trainee in 1998. Fifteen years later she was appointed CEO, achieving two firsts for the 97 year-old family business: the first female CEO and the first non-family CEO.
Beaverbrooks has been named in the Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2016, widely recognised as the most comprehensive guide to workplace engagement in the UK, for the 13th consecutive time. Beaverbrooks was nominated by its employees for providing inspirational leadership, an open and honest company culture, a strong company ethos and commitment to the wider community.
“We’re delighted that this year we achieved our highest ever response to the Best Companies engagement survey,” says Anna, “so we’ll be able to really identify what’s important to our people, which in turn will make Beaverbrooks an even better place to work where our people are inspired to be the best they can be.”
Steve Bennett – Genuine Gemstone Company
The Genuine Gemstone Company is one of the largest jewellery retailers in the UK, employing over 500 members of staff. In 2012 it won the Fast Track 100 Award as the fastest growing privately held company, and in 2013 Steve Bennett won the EY UK Turnaround Entrepreneur of the Year.
Having left school with minimal qualifications, Steve completed a computer training course before working in a number of office based computer roles. After losing his job, Steve decided to go it alone and set up his own company selling computers and software. He later went on to establish jungle.com which he sold for £37 million at the height of the dotcom boom. Several more successful ventures in ecommerce, retail and entertainment followed before he set up Gems TV in 2004 and The Genuine Gemstone Company in 2007.
Adrian de Courcey – Travel de Courcey
Adrian started his career as a strategy consultant and worked in North America, The Netherlands, Germany, Denmark and China. After returning to the UK in 2011, Adrian joined the family business ‘Travel de Courcey.’
In recent years the business has grown strongly through contract wins and high levels of organic passenger growth. Between 2011- 2015 the business grew annual revenues from £5m to £17m and the company was the first in the UK to use fast-charging electric vehicles.
In 2015, the company was named, for the second consecutive year, one of the ‘Top 1,000 Companies to Inspire Britain’ in a survey by the London Stock Exchange, Lloyds Bank and the British Growth Fund.
Jesper Neilsen – Amazing Jewellery
Over the past 14 years Jesper Nielsen has been a key player in the global jewellery business. Since 2003, the Nielsen family has been responsible for the creation of major jewellery brands, opened up more than 40 markets on 5 continents, generated billions of dollars in revenue and left significant footprints in the industry.
In 2004 Nielsen’s KasiGroup was appointed exclusive distributor for Pandora Jewelry in Central Western Europe and in 2010 the Nielsen family and Pandora Jewellery established the European distribution company Pandora CWE to carry the brand forward in CWE markets.
In 2013 Jesper Nielsen launched Endless Jewelry. Following the rapid growth of the colourful concept of leather wrap bracelets with charms, Jesper Nielsen was mentioned as one of the industry’s top 50 influencers on JCK Magazine’s ‘2015 Power List’ for his work with Pandora and the creation of Endless Jewelry.
In 2016 Jesper Nielsen and the Nielsen family will launch the revolutionary concept of Amazing Jewelry.
The 2016 EDF Congress will be held at the Novotel Birmingham, 70 Broad St, Birmingham B1 2HT.
Wednesday 8th June. 09.00 registration; 09.30 start; 16.30 close.
Tickets £225 per person including lunch
This event will be followed by the first NAJ AGM at 17.15 Please note the AGM and drinks reception is free to all members and invited guests.