Charm Diamond Centers
Dartmouth, Nova Scotia
Primary market: Canada, 69 locations in seven provinces
Number of employees: 700
President: Troy Calder
A cut above
When a second generation family business member moves into company management he or she inevitably wants to put their own stamp on things. But what do the do when the company is going great guns?
“Nothing,” deadpans Troy Calder, who took over as president of Charm Diamond Centers three years ago, after a 14-year climb up the organizational chart. “The business has been running smoothly, opening one or two locations per year. Our employees are motivated and my dad (founded Richard Calder) continues to hold the CEO position. So when I came on board, I just tried to make sure that things continued that way.”
“Running smoothly,” is a bit of an understatement. Charm Diamond Centers, which has 69 locations (including its recently opened Ottawa locale) and 700 employees, bills itself as the largest Canadian owned jewelry chain. The company’s sheer size is quite an accomplishment in a highly competitive industry in which many shopping malls host as many six or seven stores fighting for customers’ attention.
Troy Calder attributes the company’s success to its focus on diamonds, marketed under the Glacier Fire and Polar Bear Brands, which comprise 56 percent of the company’s sales. “Canadian diamonds have been selling particularly well,” he notes. Other retail basics, such as finding good locations in new malls, rewarding store managers with targeted profit sharing plans and its efforts to generate repeat business by building “customers for life,” also contributed.
Charm Diamond Centers also places considerable efforts into limiting its carbon footprint. The company set up an environmental committee in 2008, which pushed measures such as switching to biodegradable shopping bags, using more paper signage, purchasing printers certified by the Forestry Stewardship Council and using more energy efficient LED lighting.
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