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TheStreet Open House

[video] Blue Nile CEO: Diamonds are Always in Style

The video that this transcript is based on originally appeared on December 2nd.

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Harvey Kanter, CEO of Blue Nile, reviews the company's plan for growth, mobile and social media strategy and trends in diamonds and jewelry.

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT:

Jill Malandrino
: From the NAZDAQ market site, I'm Jill Malandrino, for The Street with Harvey Kantor, CEO of Blue Nile to kick off the cyber Monday and holiday 2013. Welcome back to New York. Before we get to the collection, sixth straight quarter of double-digit growth. What's growing?

Harvey Kantor: We're really excited about our business. It actually is across the category. So engagement is leading the pack, but non-engagement has continued to accelerate each quarter and we're expecting a great fourth quarter non-engagement.

Jill Malandrino: What makes you competitive over Brick and Mortar, over other online jewelers?

Harvey Kantor: Fundamentally, we just have a more efficient cost model. We don't have any of the overhead, but more importantly, we also bring the market just an incredible level of product disordinate; price points, value, and quality. When you combine that all with the ease of doing it from your home, it's really exciting.

This year, we've launched a big mobile initiative and really it's channel agnostic and device agnostic. So you can come to us on any device today and that is a new happening in the last three or four weeks. That allows you to have a simple, easy experience that's seamless and the same across any device. So Thanksgiving weekend, why do you go to a store? You can just shop at home with your friends and family.

Jill Malandrino: What about social media, because there's a new program that was launched with that as well?

Harvey Kantor: Yeah, we launched Leave Nothing to Chance, and social media is a really important part of our creating awareness and dialogue with consumers. What Leave Nothing to Chance is, is actually a scientific algorithm that will take you through a series of questions.

It will actually analyze how you've answered those questions and it will create a personalized mix of gifts that are really compelling to you. Then you can take that and send it on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and Pinterest to a whole bunch of your friends, your husband, your boyfriend. It's a really exciting way to actually make sure that you get what you want this holiday season.

Jill Malandrino: I will certainly be participating in that. But let's switch gears to macro for a bit. What about consumer confidence? Why have we seen such an increase?

Harvey Kantor: There are a lot of different factors at play. For us, we think that just the general economy, the customer's a little bit more happy, for lack of a better way to say it. The market's doing well and actually marriage rates are up a little bit. So when you put all that together and you see the fact of the matter is, we're 20 to 40 percent below, those all play into our hand. It just makes a really nice opportunity to maximize the evolving economy and we feel really good about where we're headed.

Jill Malandrino: The one interview I live for each year is this part. Let's take a look at the collection. Last year we introduced the Monique LhuillierBespoke collection. Has that expanded at all and do you expect to bring on more of Bespoke designers?

Harvey Kantor: Yeah. You know, actually Monique Lhuillier has done phenomenally well and we launched it about a year ago. You're correct. It was actually October of last year and this year in October, we've brought out an expanded mix. Not just in bridal, but in diamond jewelry, and we've launched earrings, pendants, rings, and we're really excited about the initial results.

We believe that bringing unique product to market, especially Monique Lhuillieresque product is really important. So we expect that we'll continue to bring new designers to market and extend into non-engagement, and that's real exciting for us. But we have a couple of pieces here from Monique. The Double Halo, which is a hallmark of hers. Then two new pieces, which is the Solitaire and then a carryover classic from last year.

So we're really excited about what Monique does for us. She has such a great aesthetic. She really resonates with our female consumer and really brings great value to market in terms of the prices that we sell at 20 to 40 percent below, anybody else and the quality of stones we put in her settings.

Jill Malandrino: Finally, non-engagement. What's the trend this year?

Harvey Kantor: Non-engage, we had a double-digit increase in the second quarter. We just missed a double-digit increase with a 9-1/2 percent increase in the third quarter. We're expecting actually non-engagement in Q4 to outpace engagement, which has been our thoroughbred for the last year. So the sixth consecutive quarters are really exciting and we hope to continue to have great three weeks. But these next three weeks are all telling and all important for us.

Jill Malandrino: That's great. You have the engagement customer, then you have to get the right-hand ring?

Harvey Kantor: That's right.

Jill Malandrino: Thank you very much, Harvey.

Harvey Kantor: Thanks very much. I appreciate being here.

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