Startup Crush: Gemmyo

Not too long ago, I had the pleasure of meeting Pauline Laigneau, cofounder of French online jewelry startup Gemmyo. I’ll be totally honest; from afar, this startup looks an awful lot like US customized jewelry site Gemvara – but once I got to discover the story behind the French equivalent, I realized it was really something else. And I just had to add it to my Startup Crush list 🙂

It’s really hard not to love the French startup founded in 2011 by husband and wife team, who have intertwined the story of their startup into the story of…their engagement. And it works quite nicely. Unable to navigate the traditional and rather unwelcoming French jewelry market at a rather important time in their lives, they realized they were probably not alone. And thus Gemmyo was born.

There are loads of things to love about this company – which is backed by Alven Capital and a number of other impressive investors from Aufeminin.com, PriceMinister and the likes. But there are 2 things that actually really got my attention with the way this company operates – including old-school customer service and 3D technology.

Capture d’écran 2013-11-04 à 22.58.39

Guarantees: free shipping, free 30 day returns policy, free sizing and more from this little French startup.

What Pauline described to me was almost like a perfect balance of old meets new technologies in order to create a truly perfect personalized experience for each customer. Naturally, clients on Gemmyo’s site can spend a pretty penny (customized jewelry is not really what one would classify as cheap and some of the items on the site are priced at the tens of thousands of euros. The company therefore uses 3D image and printing technology to keep the cost of producing on-demand, customized jewelry to a low.

Gemmyo Screen Shot

Personalization w/ great 3D image technology.

In addition, Pauline mentioned that one of the tricks of the trade was to call each client after the place an order to confirm and reassure them of their purchase. Quite clever, if you ask me. In a world where we are all drowning in automatic emails, a little personalized confirmation can help reassure a client that has just spent his or her life savings on a piece of jewelry on a newcomer site.

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Pauline’s inspiration ? Zappo’s founder, Tony Hsieh.

Definitely a site to keep an eye on.

Got a Startup Crush to suggest? You can submit your ideas here.

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