While we may be on the search for Brisbane’s next big idea as part of our Style + Substance campaign (remember to vote for one of our four finalists here), Brisbane is never short of interesting business stories, of people who are go-getters making their own dream jobs, like Ashley Portas; the founder of Diamondport.
At 19, Ashley was a courier driver, delivering to diamond merchants, gem merchants, gold merchants and jewellers. It didn’t take him long to fall in love with the industry, and be surprised with how many people were involved. He says he became friends with the owner of a diamond business, and he asked him for a job. Ashley says when it came time to leave his job with the merchant; he decided to start his own business, Diamondport.
Q. Tell me a bit about Diamondport and your involvement?
A. I love sourcing beautiful diamonds from all over the world, and instead of selling diamonds to jewellers where I would never see the end product or consumer, I get to be involved in the process of making couples happy. I will talk and consult with the customers, and help them choose a diamond for their ring and pick a design for the setting.
(Psst! If you haven’t noticed, Ashley is offering one lucky Styler the chance to win an $8000 Diamondport engagement ring. Click here to enter!)
Q. It was a "pinch-me" moment when…
A. Every day has a pinch-me moment when I realise the ring I helped someone choose will be a part of the biggest question that changes their life forever.
Q. What is the biggest misconception about your job?
A. That I'm a jeweller. I'm not; I'm a diamond merchant, and a sales consultant. I work closely with designers and jewellers to come up with our designs and to craft the rings.
Q. What does your typical day involve?
A. It starts with a coffee, while I read about the latest news and trends in the diamond and jewellery industry. Then I will spend the day contacting customers and meeting with them.
Q. What are currently the biggest trends in diamond rings? Have you created/sold anything spectacularly unusual or rare?
A. The latest trend would definitely be the diamond halo setting (small diamonds around a larger diamond to create a halo), with a fine band. The most expensive and rare diamond I have ever sold was a 0.45ct Pink Diamond worth, at the time, $65k.
Q. What do you love most about your job?
A. Hearing about the engagement stories after my customer has proposed with a Diamondport engagement ring.
Q. Who or what inspires you?
A. Tony Robbins inspires me. (Tony Robbins is an American motivational speaker, personal finance instructor, life coach and self-help author).
Q. If I wasn’t working in diamonds, I’d be…
A. Educating people about saving and investing their money.
Q. On the weekends you’ll find me…
A. At Bellisimo enjoying a coffee after a bike ride.
Remember to enter the Diamondport competition, for your chance to win an engagement ring, valued at $8000.
Suite 402, Level 4, 180 Queen Street, Brisbane CBD
P 3210 1011 www.diamondport.com.au