Our History

In 1937, I.B. “Buster” Goodman established the business in Cincinnati, Ohio. Buster was, however, no stranger to the industry. His father, Jacob Goodman had built successful jewelry manufacturing and retail companies, Goodman Jewelers, in Indianapolis, Indiana. Buster carved out a niche for IBGoodman by creating emblematic rings for fraternal organizations such as the Masonic Order. By the 1960s, the company earned the reputation as a leader in the men’s jewelry market and Buster grew the company by trading on his expertise and close relationships with the founders of great U.S. retail institutions including Zale, Kays and Gordon’s to name just a few.

When Goodman passed away in 1976, his daughters Babette Goodman Cohen and Jane Goodman Baum inherited the business. The two decided to run the business themselves and elder sister, Babette took the helm. At the time, this was an extraordinary move- few women managed manufacturing companies and almost none in the jewelry business, a male dominated industry for generations. With no rule book to follow, Babette set her own course. Always open to new ideas and innovations, Babette led the company and set many industry precedents.

In 1980, IBGoodman was one of the first companies to establish a partnership with a DeBeers sightholder, thereby positioning the company as a vertically integrated prime jewelry manufacturing company and diamond supplier. Soon after, the company was among the first to brand a men’s jewelry line, a diamond band collection named LeMans. This new product category caught the attention of DeBeers which, in turn, created its first “A Diamond is Forever” advertising campaign targeting the men’s market. In the following years, IBGoodman traded on the strength it achieved through national advertising and sound management principles to grow its business through product line expansion which included all categories of women’s diamond and gemstone fine jewelry.

In 1998, IBGoodman introduced a women’s designer fine jewelry collection which it continues to be marketed under the brand name Zē.

In 1999 the company launched one of the most innovative product lines at the time, Stēl, combining alternative metals such as stainless steel, 14K gold and diamonds to create stylish, comfortable and extremely durable jewelry accessories for men. Since then, employing “alternative metal” in fine jewelry design and manufacture has developed mass market popularity.

In 2005 Zē expanded into the bridal jewelry business and quickly made a statement for original design, high quality and exceptional service.

In 2008, the Company launched another innovative line to meet the needs of a growing market for men’s stylish accessories. J.Goodman - a portfolio of men’s jewelry accessories crafted in 925 Sterling silver, and accented with 18Kt gold, precious stones and other exotic materials.

IBGoodman conducts business as it should be done, upholding superior standards from product design and manufacturing quality to customer service and value to the consumer. Moreover, IBGoodman has also made it its mission to be a standard bearer in the industry. To that end, Babette became increasingly active in the jewelry industry, and, once again, blazed a trail becoming the first woman to Chair the Manufacturing Jewelers and Suppliers of America (MJSA) in its 100 year history. Babette also became the first woman admitted to the New York Diamond Dealers Club and the prestigious 24 Karat Club of New York, an association of elite American jewelry manufacturers and suppliers, which had been exclusively a man’s domain for more than 100 years. Babette is also a past board member of the Jewelers Vigilance Committee and past Chairman of the Diamond, Jewelry & Watch Division of UJA-Federation of New York. Babette currently serves as Chairman of the Board for IBGoodman.

Today, the family owned company is headed by Jonathan Goodman Cohen, the fourth generation Goodman in the business. Jonathan joined the family business in 1991, after gaining extensive business experience within the manufacturing and retail industries. He started his career at IBGoodman as a salesman covering the western United States and worked his way through the ranks. In 1999, he became President of IBGoodman and is currently its Chief Executive Officer. Upholding the company’s tradition of service, Jonathan currently serves on the JCK Advisory Board, is a member of the prestigious 24Karat Club of New York, past President of the Plumb Club. Jonathan also previously served on the Board of Directors of the Manufacturing Jewelers and Suppliers of America (MJSA) and the Jewelers Vigilance Committee (JVC).

IBGoodman’s vast product selection and brand portfolio are sold through large and mid-sized jewelry chains, department stores, ecommerce sites and over 300 independent retailers nationwide. Additionally, IBGoodman exports its product lines to a growing international account base including wholesalers and retailers in fourteen countries.

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