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Our Family Heritage
The Browns story began back in 1934 when Larry’s late grandfather, Jack, opened a boutique jewellery store in downtown Johannesburg. Jack was a talented and highly skilled goldsmith having been taught by his own grandfather.
Jack worked hard and gradually word of his skill began to spread. It wasn’t long before Jack was able to move to larger premises and clients began to travel from far and wide to view his wonderful creations and purchase his exquisite designs. In time Jack married and had a son and three daughters. The family all helped in the jewellery store and over the years his grandchildren too spent many hours watching him work. His youngest daughter Myra married Bernard Brown and went on to have four sons; Sandy, Johnny, Larry and Gavin.
Barely tall enough to see over the dark wooden counters, Jack began to teach the boys all they needed to know about the jewellery business. He inspired in them a passion for fine jewellery and nurtured their artistic and creative flair. As they grew older they were taught the fine craftsmanship and goldsmithing techniques of their grandfather, ensuring that the legacy of jewellery making would continue to pass down through the generations.
Larry Alon Brown was born in Johannesburg, South Africa on the 6th of November 1964. He was Myra and Bernard Brown’s second youngest son in a family of 4 boys. Growing up, the family jewellery business started by his grandfather, the late Jack Friedman, was always central to his life and many hours were spent in the store watching and learning. Jack, recognising Larry’s natural talent and flair for design, spent many hours teaching him about the business and most importantly the goldsmithing techniques taught to him by his own grandfather.
During his schooling career Larry recognised his other passion, finance. In 1989 Larry Brown was awarded his Bachelors Certificate in Accounting Science from the University of South Africa (UNISA) and the following year received his Honours. Larry went on to complete his articles with the South African firm of auditors, Grant Thornton.
Inspired by their own unique and creative vision it was during the early 1980’s that Larry embarked on building Browns into what it is today. As South Africa’s largest and most successful jewellery store Browns epitomizes exceptional quality, enduring designs and outstanding customer service. Larry constantly travels the world in search of inspiration for the brand’s next spectacular collections, he is intimately involved in the creation of every single piece in stores. A great deal of his time is spent studying the jewellery retail industry and as a result he is an expert in the field of store design and ambiance from lighting to furnishings. This unique combination of experience and talent means that every aspect of a Browns store has been carefully considered ensuring that your experience will be both special and memorable.
However it isn’t just the brand that Larry investments his time in, he is as equally passionate about the people who work alongside him to make Browns a success. Larry strives to employ and educate the South African youth about the jewellery industry, just as his grandfather had done for him, with the Browns Learnership Academy. He also encourages a company culture steeped in respect, personal growth, and excellence.