Why I Founded BriteCo

By Dustin Lemick, Founder & CEO BriteCo

Like a lot of jewelers, I was born into the business.  My grandfather started his jewelry retail store in 1958 in a northern suburb of Chicago.  After graduation from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, I joined the family business and soon got my Graduate Gemologist degree from the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).  I’ve spent 13 years selling jewelry and watches, working weekends and evenings, dealing with every aspect of the trade – including processing and handling jewelry claims for large primary insurance companies such as State Farm, Allstate, Chubb, and Farmers.   That in-store experience has given me an in-depth understanding of appraisal systems, diamond and gemstone markets, retail pricing models, insurance replacement models, and jewelry quotation pricing systems.

One of the main reasons I put in the hours and effort it takes to make a successful brick-and-mortar jewelry business came from delighting my customers and helping them create moments of celebration and joy in their lives and for their loved ones.  And like so many of my peers in the jewelry retail trade, I was frustrated with finding time to do appraisals and spending hours on the phone getting the runaround from insurance companies.  I hated dealing with preferred networks, and worst of all, I hated having to explain to my customer that her insurance coverage or homeowner’s policy didn’t cover the full replacement cost of her lost diamond ring.

I knew in my heart there had to be a better way of managing my time, my customers, and my business. Why, I asked myself, in the age of smartphones and talking computers, are jewelers still stuck in the dark ages when it comes to managing appraisals and insurance?

So, I left the family store more than a year ago to start BriteCo. I wanted BriteCo to be a unique and innovative jewelry and watch insurance company that would transform the entire appraisal and insurance process using digital technology. I wanted to simply make the jeweler’s job easier, our customers happier, and the retail brick and mortar business more successful and satisfying for everyone.

First and foremost, BriteCo had to see how we could best use technology to automate and streamline the appraisal process.   Here’s what our cloud-based BriteCo Appraisal Management System does for the jeweler.

The BriteCo Appraisal Management System is super easy to use. You and your employees can complete an appraisal (including attaching photos) in about 10 minutes on your office computer, tablet, or even a smartphone.  You’re guided through a step-by-step process that captures all key information to ensure the accuracy of your appraisal. Save an appraisal at any point in the process, and when you decide to complete it, you can print it and send a PDF to your customer.

Your customer appraisals provide an instant reference for replacements when a claim is made through a BriteCo insurance policy. BriteCo does not use a preferred network, and we refer customers back to the store where the item was purchased.  Replace with your stock, your vendors, and your suppliers. That’s just a sample of what you gain with BriteCo.  You can learn more and watch a demo of the appraisal system at www.brite.co/jewelers .

Here’s what BriteCo does for your jewelry customer.

  • Immediate insurance coverage – Based on their appraisal, BriteCo sends a text or email message directly to the customer with a price range for insurance coverage. The customer can reply to the message immediately, answer a few questions, get an exact quote, and be covered in under 5 minutes.
  • Annual updates keep coverage current – BriteCo insurance features automatic insurance appraisal value updates every year, so your customers’ coverages are always up to date.
  • Replacement up to 125% of value – BriteCo provides replacement for loss, theft, mysterious disappearance, or damage, up to 125% of appraised value.
  • Zero deductibles – BriteCo jewelry and watch insurance standard policies have no deductibles, so customers don’t have to worry about paying out of pocket for replacement claims.
  • Fully secured – BriteCo insurance policies are backed by an AM Best A rated global insurance carrier.

Plus, your customers get the convenience of an online BriteCo account to access their important insurance documents anytime, anywhere.

While everybody seems to be talking about how wonderful technology can be in changing our lives for the better, BriteCo is doing it.  Without gimmicks or tech buzz words, we offer the jeweler a time-saving, straightforward way to create, track, and manage jewelry and watch appraisals online, in minutes.  And we give our customers a faster, easier, and safer way to get insurance coverage, so their precious jewelry and watches are protected from loss, theft, or damage.  Our mission at BriteCo is to continuously improve on the retail jewelry experience, making it more enjoyable for everyone.

To benefit as many stores as possible, the BriteCo Appraisal Management System is free to qualified jewelers.  You can apply to become a BriteCo jeweler partner on our website at www.brite.co/for-jewelers/#apply.  Together we can make this a game changer for our whole industry.  Welcome to BriteCo.

Contact

909 Davis Street, Suite 500
Evanston IL 60201

info@brite.co

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BriteCo LLC is a licensed insurance agency in all fifty states and the District of Columbia.
Please see the Licenses section of this website for more information. All insurance policies underwritten and issued by HDI Global Insurance Company and administered by BriteCo.