Tell us about yourself and your background
I went to Vasant Valley school and then went on to graduate from The Pennsylvania State University, University Park with a major in finance with a specialization in investment banking and real estate; and minors in supply chain management, IST, entrepreneurship, business law and visual designing. I then did a course from GIA, California.
It was always important for me to gain knowledge in every field. I am an avid reader. Even after graduating, I am constantly taking up online courses and reading books to gain knowledge in every field possible.
I am a bit of a perfectionist. I always have a clear picture in my mind of how I like things, whether it’s in my personal or professional life and I work hard at achieving them.
I am a minimalist. It’s the simple things that please me more than anything else. I am fascinated with nature and it is a major source of inspiration to me – especially roses.
Tell us about the company you have set up – when did you set it up, what products or services do you provide, what is your target market?
My bespoke gold and diamond jewelry line goes by the name of S2B9. It specializes in statement pieces for the modern women who don’t wish to wear bulky, heavy jewelry and enjoy wearing simple and yet elegant pieces that make a statement. It’s for every girl and woman, irrespective of their age. The whole idea of S2B9 was to provide women with an opportunity to buy designer pieces of jewelry at wholesale rates. The brand focuses on creating exclusive jewelry for women at the lowest cost possible without compromising on the quality, design and finish. The brand does not make any piece by hand, to maintain an international standard. We make designer diamond jewelry with a mix of ruby, emeralds, sapphire, semi-precious stones and pearls to create timeless products that will brighten any occasion with its grace.
The USP of the brand is that it allows the client to be a designer as well. Each client is a part of the design process. After discussing the concept and the initial design with the client, the team creates a computerized design for the client that shows a detailed 360° view of the piece. The client then has the chance to change the design as many times as she wants. We make as many designs for each client as she wants, because we want every piece to be just perfect.
We are not like other jewelers, who provide their own certificates that have no standing once you leave the store. All our pieces are certified by International Gemological Institute (IGI). The certificate carries a picture of the piece and its summary number, which can be tracked on IGI’s website and the information on the quality of diamonds as well. Since, it is an international lab with offices in all major cities of the world, the certificate can be used in any part of the world for resale.
Above all, our priority lies in the best quality, the magnificent craftsmanship that carries and captures beauty to stand out whilst preserving the classical elegance a jewelry piece carries, so it can present it self with the utter most grace.
The brand only charges a 3% commission on every piece and 1% on solitaires to maintain the lowest rates in the market.
Why did you set up the company? / What drove you to become an Entrepreneur?
I have been obsessed with jewelry since I was four years old. All children seemed to hate being dragged to jewelry stores with their mothers but I, on the other hand, loved going to the store with my mom. Even at the age of four, I played with the ring sizers and bangle sizers and commented on every piece, helping my mom choose her items of jewelry.
After graduating from Penn State, I told my parents about my interest in the field and they were extremely supportive, offering to help me in every way possible. However, I wanted to do everything on my own. I come from a family where my father started from scratch. I have seen him work from 9am to 4am for the first ten years of my life. It was important for me to go through the same struggle. I truly believe that the struggle builds character, teaches you important decision-making skills and helps you learn and grow in the best possible way. You not only learn to value money but you put in extra efforts to make it work. I wanted to be a self-made person.
I spent six months researching the market in India and started the company when I was 23-years-old. The company is now a one and a half years old. I am proud to say that the company is a result of my team’s efforts and we have built it without any financial help from anyone.
What has been your biggest challenge in achieving your success?
The biggest challenge is the lead-time. It currently takes us a month to fulfil each piece because of its exclusive nature and the involvement of clients in the process.
What has been your greatest achievement so far?
We have just tied up with a jewelry brand in Germany, called Meri Karapetyan and S2B9 pieces will be sold in their stores from August.
How do you balance your work life and home life?
I don’t have a home life as such. I am always working. I am a hyperactive child who needs to keep using her mind. If I’m not meeting or talking to clients, I am working on designs. If I am not doing that, I am catching up on my online MBA courses or reading a book. It is extremely difficult for me to sit idle and not do anything.
I like to get to know my client really well to know their taste and I always put in the time to get to know them before, during and after making the piece. I like to develop a long-term relationship with each one of them. I have clients calling me even at midnight to discuss their piece or discuss a personal problem as well. I try to help them in whatever way I can. For me, every client has put her trust in me, which makes them family and I try to make them feel like family too.
What advice do you have for women starting out on their own?
The most important advice I have for women is to meet as many businessmen and businesswomen as you can. Everyone has something new to teach you. Every little lesson goes a long way.
What does the future hold for you?
I have a lot of surprises in the pipeline for this year. I would like to disclose them at the right time.
About Sanya Bajaj –
I am Sanya Bajaj, a young dynamic jeweller and entrepreneur and the owner of S2B9 Jewelry. I am a complete workaholic, meticulous and a bit of a perfectionist. I pay attention to every detail, from the micro level, the dimension of design and the choices of materials giving a balance of classic scheme in modern concepts. An avid reader and writer, I view the world from a different perspective. I am captivated by our natural environment and any form, shape that catches my fancy stimulates me to translate that inanimate thought into an animate object of beauty and art.