By Mackenzie Hurlbert
Walter Rozycki was only 22 years old when he decided to start his own jewelry company named Azur Global Imports. It was 1974 and the turquoise industry was booming. “During that time most of the free world was fascinated with our Native American Arts. Turquoise jewelry was as popular back then as the iPhone is today,” Rozycki notes.
The fad infiltrated department stores, gift shops, flea markets, and trunk shows and lasted until 1979, when prices in the silver market spiked. “This busted the silver jewelry market,” says Rozycki. As the turquoise fad died down and silver prices increased, Rozycki met a jewelry dealer from New York who introduced him to Italian silver jewelry. “Italians make the best chains in the world and we work with the best of the best.”
With the new connection, Rozycki was able to take advantage of the boom in chain popularity in the 80’s. “In the span of 10 years we went from being a regional wholesaler to a mail order power house,” he says. By end of the 90’s, Azur Global Imports had grown ten-fold.
Since entering the chain market, Azur Global Imports has flourished. They’ve grown to include rhodium finishes, men’s heavy link chains, adjustable chains, and more. “The Adjustable chain uses a bead clasp that one can, with just a slight pull, cinch up or let out,” adds Rozycki. “Women love this versatility.” Along with chains, they’ve also added earrings and pendant designs to their product lines.
The company has continued to grow in leaps and bounds with an emphasis on Italian silver jewelry like box chains, snake chains, ropes, and a variety of other styles. They also offer customization services for those retailers who would like a specific chain length or clasp. “Price and quick reliable service have been keys to our success,” says Rozycki. “We work very tight on our margins as chains are an extremely competitive item.” The company also prioritizes quick shipping with the majority of orders shipped the same day or no later than three business days.
Rozycki said the biggest challenge for Azur Global Imports is to keep up with constantly changing technology. “We are employing some experts in the field to help us come up with the best possible strategies.” Rozycki also hopes to reboot the company’s website on a new, responsive platform by the start of 2016.
“The future for Azur Global Imports is to continue to provide the best selection of silver chains, to continue to showcase the finest Italian jewelry designers,” Rozycki says, “And to live up to our reputation of 41 years of offering quality products at the best possible prices, with quick, reliable and friendly service.”