When the coronavirus pandemic first emerged earlier this year, Isaac Levy found himself in a place that many business owners were in, looking for orders to keep his business operating.
Levy, owner, and co-founder of Yvel, an Israeli luxury jewelry brand best-known for creating jewels made of baroque pearls, has a workforce of about 150 persons in Israel and the U.S. This includes craft persons from Ethiopia who were trained at the Megemeria School of Jewelry & Art at Yvel’s factory outside of Jerusalem. The school is funded by the company to train Ethiopian immigrants in jewelry making skills. Overall, about 90 percent of Yvel employees are immigrants from 23 countries.
In his travels in the U.S. to drum up business, a client and friend, described by Levy as a Chinese businessman and art collector living in Los Angeles, came up with the idea of producing a one-of-a-kind bejeweled protective facemask.