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Luxury Watch Veteran Steven Kaiser Dies

May 23, 2022 7:51 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... Steven Kaiser, longtime Swiss watch specialist and CEO of Kennedy North America, died suddenly on May 20 at the age of 68.

Kaiser’s love of timepieces began in 1993, when he took a job as president of luxury Swiss watch brand Baume & Mercier. He spent 16 years at the company, eventually becoming CEO, a spokesperson for his family and colleagues said Sunday.

In 2000, after two years as executive shareholder of watch business Benedom, Kaiser sold his interest to parent company LVMH and launched his own venture. Kaiser Time was a full-service consulting, business development, executive recruiting, and mergers and acquisitions business that helped brands, retailers and industry organizations navigate the nuances of the Swiss watch industry.

Together with his longtime associate Diane James, in 2005 Kaiser launched Luxury Swiss Watch by JCK, a platform for esteemed timepiece brands to exhibit in the US market. A decade later, the two joined the Couture show as consultants, helping the organization expand its roster of exhibiting luxury timepiece brands. In 2021, Kaiser became CEO and US president of the Kennedy luxury group.

During his time in the industry, Kaiser served on the board of directors of various trade organizations, including Jewelers for Children (JFC), the Jewelers Vigilance Committee (JVC), and the Jewelers’ Security Alliance (JSA), where he had been chair since 2019. He also received various awards, including JVC’s Stanley Schechter Lifetime Achievement Award and the Women’s Jewelry Association’s (WJA) Ben Kaiser Award, named after his father.

Kaiser is survived by his wife of 39 years, Vivian, and his two children, Jeff and Emily. Services will take place on Wednesday in New York City. The family has asked for donations to be made in Kaiser’s name to JFC.

Image: Steven Kaiser. (Steven Kaiser/LinkedIn)
Tags: baume & mercier, Benedom, Couture, Diane James, Jewelers for Children , Jewelers Vigilance Committee, Jewelers’ Security Alliance, JFC, JSA, JVC, Kaiser Time, Kennedy North America, Luxury Swiss Watch by JCK, LVMH, Rapaport News, Steven Kaiser, wja, Women’s Jewelry Association
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