A Day in the Life: Daniel Namdar, Fancy Color Diamond Specialist

SourcingSep 21, 2022

A Day in the Life: Daniel Namdar, Fancy Color Diamond Specialist

Namdar joins a long line of diamond experts, but his love of the trade was learned rather than inherited.

Daniel Namdar, director of Namdar Diamonds, shares what an average day is like in his role and what he loves most about his job.
New York—The story of Namdar Diamonds began nearly a century ago in Italy, when Rafael Namdar got his start as a gemstone supplier.

His son, Sammy, headed to New York in 1984 to start his own company. His eye for opportunity led him to shift gears from gemstones to colored diamonds, a then-burgeoning market in America.

Now, those who know colored diamonds know the Namdar name.

Sammy’s sons, Joe and Daniel Namdar, joined their father to carry on the family business.

In a recent Q&A with National Jeweler, Daniel, now director of Namdar Diamonds, shared what a day in his life is like and what drew him to the family business.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

National Jeweler: Your family has a long history in the jewelry business. Why did you decide to join them?

Daniel Namdar: I never really had a calling for jewelry when I was younger, but the business was growing and there was potential, so I decided to do it.

I didn’t have a great passion for it in the beginning, but it developed a couple of years in.

You start learning more about stones and get an appreciation for what you’re doing.

In the beginning, it was a family business so it just made sense, but now it’s something I really love and enjoy doing.

NJ: How did you get started in the family business? What was your first job?

DN: I started doing all the grunt work, which I think is important for any business owner to do.

I did everything from licking envelopes to doing the shipping, picking up packages, and sorting diamonds.

When I started becoming more active in selling and buying, I showed that I had a good eye. The stones I was buying for the company were selling quickly, so I started transitioning more into buying and selling.

Now, I try to focus only on dealing with suppliers and customers.

NJ: Fast-forward seven years, you’re the director of Namdar Diamonds. What are your daily responsibilities?

DN: I oversee what kind of merchandise we’re buying, how we’re allocating our funds, and what we’re investing in.

I also look for new business, new clients, and new stores. I still do a little bit of everything.

I make sure our inventory and money are where they should be. I see how the market is going, what’s selling and what’s not.

NJ: What is your typical day like at work? How do you start your day?

DN: I start my day with a coffee. Our business is 24 hours because we deal with people in Hong Kong and India.

We’re very much in the service industry. The bulk of our business is yellow diamonds and that’s all special order. It’s not something a retail jeweler will readily have in stock. It’s something that when they get a call for it, they right away reach out to someone like us.

They ask, “What do you have in this? Can I get a price on that?”

So, a lot of the time, throughout the night, I’ll get texts and calls from different customers. I try not to work when I’m home with my wife and kids, so I write it down and then when I get to the office, I have a list of people to get back to.

A lot of the business is sending out quotes. People want to know how much it would cost for this eternity band or what they can get for this budget.

I have a list on my phone of who I need to get back to and [I] start [my day] by getting back to them.

Once my list is clear, then it’s a little bit of everything. The phone rings throughout the day and then there’s email.

When I have free time, I look through our goods and our shipments.

NJ: So, this isn’t your typical 9-to-5 job?

DN: No, it’s all over the place. This is definitely not a 9-to-5.

NJ: What is your favorite part about your job?

DN: The corny answer is to make people’s dreams happen.

The real answer is, and this is how to do well in our sector of the jewelry industry, finding value. 

It’s all about finding something for a good price that maybe here this stone is not appreciated, but you can find somewhere it will be.

For example, in America there isn’t much demand for a chameleon (color change) diamond. If someone has a tough time selling it overseas, we can buy it at a good price, knowing that it’s rare. We can find a person who can appreciate its rarity. If we can make that sale with a fair but healthy margin, that’s very rewarding.

Whenever you create value and create a sale where there wasn’t one, that’s rewarding.

 Related stories will be right here … 

NJ: If you couldn’t have this job, what would you be instead?

DN: I would be a principal of a school. I’m good at running the show and I like working with kids. It’s meaningful.

It’s something I have a knack for and something I’ve wanted to do since I was a kid, but the honest truth is in Great Neck, New York [where I live], prices are very high.

We live in a community where there’s a level that people are accustomed to living and teachers don’t make that much money.

I got married at a very young age. I got married at 23. I’m currently 28 with three kids, so money needs to always be coming in.

At the end of the day, I needed to do something where I could support my family and live the life I wanted to live.

NJ: It may be too early to say, but do you think your children will carry on the family business?

DN: It’s something that’s impossible to answer because our business is based in New York City and the climate in New York City is changing so drastically every day.

Really, I don’t know what’s going to be in another 15 to 20 years, but if everything stays the same, I’m sure my kids would like it.

My oldest kid is 4, so right now it’s impossible to say. His passion is fighting crime and saving the world, like the Avengers.

NJ: I’m sure if the Avengers have an opening, they’ll let him know. Lastly, if you could give one piece of advice to someone aspiring to be in your field, what would you say?

DN: The key to being successful in fancy color diamonds is learning to find value. You have to learn how to find X and turn it into 1.5X. 

You have to learn who buys what, who needs what kind of merchandise, what sells, what doesn’t. You really have to stay in tune with the market and know what’s moving and what’s not.

If you’re good at it and execute properly, it’s rewarding and you can make a good living.

The Latest

CollectionsFeb 02, 2023
Lowe’s Is Now Selling Jewelry

The home improvement store’s website features an “Empowerment Tools” demi-fine jewelry collection.

Events & AwardsFeb 02, 2023
Registration is Now Open for JIS Spring 2023

The show will feature a new pavilion of 30 jewelry designers and manufacturers from Surat, India.

Policies & IssuesFeb 02, 2023
Tiny Radioactive Capsule Lost in Australian Outback Found

A government official said search crews “found the needle in the haystack” when they located the capsule belonging to Rio Tinto along an 870-mile stretch of road.

Brought to you by
Bringing Over 130 Years of Diamond Expertise to Modern Grading

De Beers Institute of Diamonds provides the very best in diamond verification, education and diamond services.

TrendsFeb 02, 2023
Amanda’s Style File: Purple and Playful

Amanda Gizzi welcomes February with a selection of amethyst jewelry, a birthstone that “deserves its own time to shine.”

Weekly QuizFeb 02, 2023
This Week’s Quiz
Test your jewelry news knowledge with this short test.
Take the Quiz
EditorsFeb 01, 2023
Designers to Watch in 2023: Boochier

Behind the playful and nostalgic brand lies deeper meaning.

Events & AwardsFeb 01, 2023
New Miami Jewelry Center Slated to Open in Q1

The Time Century Jewelry Center is located in downtown Miami’s jewelry district.

Brought to you by
De Beers Institute of Diamonds Expands to Offer Education

De Beers is sharing over 130 years of experience and expertise through the De Beers Institute of Diamonds with a selection of courses.

SurveysFeb 01, 2023
Consumer Confidence Falls in January

Wariness about the year ahead offset a more positive view of the current economic situation.

MajorsFeb 01, 2023
Six New Retailers Appointed to IJO’s Board of Directors

The IJO also welcomed one new vendor member to its 13-member board, Brecken Farnsworth of Parlé Jewelry Designs.

ColumnistsJan 31, 2023
Squirrel Spotting: How About a Word for the New Year?

It begins with a “t” and ends with a “c” and is imbued with warmth and positivity, Peter Smith writes.

Policies & IssuesJan 31, 2023
Rio Tinto Issues Apology After Radioactive Capsule Goes Missing

The tiny capsule, which is believed to have fallen out of a truck, was lost somewhere along an 870-mile stretch of desert road.

MajorsJan 31, 2023
Indian Jewelry Brand Tanishq Opens First U.S. Store, More on the Way

The jeweler’s expansion plans include 20 to 30 more stores in North America and the Middle East over the next two to three years.

Events & AwardsJan 31, 2023
Gucci Is Getting a Gem Award

The Italian luxury brand will receive the first Gem Award for High Jewelry Excellence.

MajorsJan 31, 2023
Martin Flyer Names New VP of Business Development

Industry veteran Kevin Lane has stepped into the role.

MajorsJan 30, 2023
Researchers Uncover Bejeweled ‘Golden Boy’ Mummy

The ancient Egyptian teenager was buried 2,300 years ago with 49 amulets to guide him through the afterlife.

SurveysJan 30, 2023
Consumers Embracing Non-Traditional Ways to Mark Valentine’s Day

The NRF’s annual survey shows that consumer attitudes about how, or even whether, to celebrate Feb. 14 continue to evolve.

Events & AwardsJan 30, 2023
JA Is Searching for the Next Retail ’20 Under 40’

Nominations are open now through March 24.

MajorsJan 30, 2023
10 Jewelry News Stories You Might Have Missed

A column detailing how independent jewelers did last year and the top watch brands of 2022 were among the most-read stories last week.

FinancialsJan 27, 2023
Tiffany & Co. Shines for LVMH in 2022

Acquired in 2021, the brand’s high jewelry sales have doubled and its new “Lock” collection was an instant hit.

MajorsJan 27, 2023
Diamond Council of America Appoints Treasurer, Board Member

Executives from Fred Meyer Jewelers and Riddles Jewelers have filled the roles.

CollectionsJan 27, 2023
Piece of the Week: Heavenly Vices’ Lock Necklace

The Victorian-inspired design is a functional lock and key.

Supplier BulletinJan 26, 2023
JA New York Spring Brings the Industry Together

For over 100 years, JA New York has played an integral role in facilitating the evolution of our industry, while also honoring past traditions.

TrendsJan 26, 2023
At Vicenzaoro, Paola De Luca Gazes Into Jewelry’s Future

The trend forecaster and her guests explored unconventional jewelry designs, NFTs, AI art, and more during her Trendvision presentation.

CollectionsJan 26, 2023
NDC and Lorraine Schwartz Announce New ‘EDDI’ Class

The Emerging Designers Diamond Initiative provides diamond credit and mentorship to young brands helmed by BIPOC designers.

IndependentsJan 26, 2023
Lee Michaels Fine Jewelry Set to Open 10th Store

It will be located in San Antonio’s Alamo Quarry Market and will be Lee Michaels’ third location in the city.

Policies & IssuesJan 26, 2023
Diamonds Do Good Names 10 to Board of Directors

Stephanie Gottlieb, Jewelers Mutual’s Mike Alexander, and Craig Rottenberg of Long’s Jewelers are among the new board members.


This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy