Fenton & Co. raises £850k to bring luxury gemstone engagement rings to UK market
The funding was raised from Mustard Seed, the London Co-Investment Fund and angel investors, including Bloom & Wild backer Camila Dolan
Independent jewellery company Fenton & Co. today announces its launch into the UK market, challenging the lack of transparency and pricing in the industry. The launch was enabled by a £850,000 seed funding round, led by social impact investor Mustard Seed. Investment was also received via The London Co-Investment Fund, as well as a number of angel investors, including two early investors into Bloom & Wild: Camila Dolan, and Akshata Murty.
Founded in early 2018 by serial entrepreneur Laura Lambert, jewellery brand Fenton & Co. creates bespoke engagement and occasion rings using precious gemstones such as sapphires, rubies, emeralds and aquamarines. The company launches with a suite of five classic styles that customers can tailor to over 5,000 pieces to suit their own tastes. Fenton & Co. rings are designed for the discerning and smart consumer: those looking for a luxury product, without compromising on price – its rings start from £950. The difference in pricing is stark to those seen in traditional jewellers, where a two carat diamond ring will cost upwards of £18,000. The same size stone in either a ruby, emerald or sapphire can be purchased from Fenton & Co. for just £5,000.
The materials used to create every Fenton & Co. ring are sourced directly by the team offering its customers full supply chain transparency. Fenton & Co. works directly with local suppliers and dealers to source its materials, with all of the stones obtained responsibly from mines in conflict-free zones. An estimated 15 pc of the diamonds on the global market are still sourced from unregulated mines, where corruption in the supply chain persists. The metals Fenton & Co. uses for its engagement rings are also procured from recycled sources. Fenton & Co. also has boots-on-the-ground support in India, where the factories are based, selecting those with working conditions are progressive – men and women are paid the same, work alongside each other, and given the same opportunities for promotion.
Laura Lambert, Founder and CEO, Fenton & Co, said: “The classic round solitaire diamond, made famous by iconic brands such as Tiffany’s and De Beers, has dominated the engagement ring market for many years. However, with a high-quality one-carat diamond costing upwards of £6,000, the cost is prohibitive for most Our designs are made for today’s more informed and intelligent consumers who are looking for a luxurious, unique piece that comes at an affordable price and has been created responsibly. Fenton & Co. rings are intricately designed to last for a lifetime using only the highest quality gemstones, adopting the same sophisticated manufacturing techniques pioneered by leading high jewellery houses, thanks to the first-hand experience of Kathrin, who heads up our manufacturing team. Each of our rings are made to order for the consumer that wants a beautiful ring that truly celebrates every element of their own – or their partners – identity, values and personality. ”
Commenting on the investment, Orson Stadler, Principal, Mustard Seed, said: “Fenton & Co. is uniquely positioned to address growing demands for price and supply transparency, with its innovative ‘fair production and fair pricing’ approach. Mustard Seed is an early-stage investor focused on investments into companies where there is a clear and mutually reinforcing relationship between the generation of financial returns and social good, which supports Fenton & Co.’s mission to a tee.
“We have been hugely impressed by Laura’s ability to blend a quantitative and iterative product approach while maintaining an authentic brand, and we are very excited to see the progression of Fenton & Co. in becoming global force for good across the engagement ring and broader jewellery industries.”
A number of angel investors contributed to Fenton & Co.’s seed round. Camilla Dolan, an early investor into flower gifting company Bloom & Wild and food box subscription service Gousto among others, contributed a significant amount, as well as Akshata Murty of Catamaran Ventures who made a personal investment in the company. Murty also backed Bloom & Wild in its early stages.
Angel investor Camila Dolan also commented: “Fenton & Co. is provocative to the traditional notion of a diamond being ‘the engagement ring’; a concept that no longer resonates with the reality of modern-day relationships. Fenton & Co.’s business model also demonstrates the huge opportunity that technology presents to improve transparency in the supply chain in the jewellery industry; an industry that has traditionally lacked transparency in every way.
“Laura has great energy, a strong vision and passion for reinventing the engagement ring for the modern-day consumer. These qualities, combined with her exceptional understanding of the customer thanks to her strong retail background, led to my investment in Fenton & Co. I very much look forward to supporting Laura through this stage of the process, and going forwards as Fenton & Co. comes to market.”
The first five styles are now available to browse and purchase on Fenton & Co’s website.
About Fenton & Co.
Founded by serial entrepreneur Laura Lambert in early 2018, Fenton & Co. designs and produces occasion rings for the smart consumer: providing an authentic, luxurious product, without compromising on price, using precious gemstones such as sapphires, rubies, emeralds and aquamarines.
Fenton & Co. uses only the highest-quality gemstones that have been responsibly sourced from mines in conflict-free zones, as well as only using only recycled metals. All products are manufactured in carefully selected factories and workshops that meet the highest standard of working conditions.
All of its designs are made to order, with prices starting from £950.