Gemvara Raises $5.2 Million

Gemvara Inc., a Lexington, Mass.-based operator of an ecommerce site for custom jewlery, has raised $5.2 million in Series B funding co-led by existing backers Highland Capital Partners and Canaan Partners.


Gemvara Inc., an e-commerce innovator for custom jewelry, today announced it has raised $5.2 million in a Series B financing led by current venture investors, Highland Capital Partners and Canaan Partners. The company plans to use the capital to further improve the quality of their consumer experience and expand strategic marketing initiatives.

Originally founded in 2007 as Paragon Lake by entrepreneur Matt Lauzon, the company was rebranded in 2010 as Gemvara, the world’s first site for creating custom designer gemstone jewelry. Gemvara’s sophisticated online designer offers consumers a simple ‘click to create’ virtual model for customizing jewelry that has dramatically improved upon traditional methods for buying and selling jewelry online. This second round of financing will support Gemvara as the company rolls out mass customization to the designer jewelry market for the first time.

“We’ve been pleased since launching with the number of visitors to Gemvara and the number of orders those visitors have placed,” company founder Matt Lauzon says. “Consumers are thrilled to be able to get exactly what they want and we’re thrilled to have happy customers. With the support of Highland Capital and Canaan Partners, Gemvara is well positioned for an exciting stage of expansion and development.”

Dan Ciporin of Canaan Partners and Bob Davis of Highland Capital, as well as chairman Deb Bessemer, currently serve on Gemvara’s board. In July 2008, Gemvara raised an additional $5.8 million in a Series A financing, also by Highland Capital and Canaan. These funds were used to build the site’s customization technology, develop early traction with web visitors, and develop a top-quality customer service model.

About Gemvara
Gemvara is the ultimate online shopping site for creating one-of-a-kind custom designer necklaces, rings, and earrings to suit any style and budget. With a selection of more than 1,000 original designs from leading international artists available in an unparalleled palette of options, Gemvara allows shoppers to easily customize each piece online by combining varieties of brilliant gemstones with a range of precious metals. All Gemvara jewelry is artfully constructed by master craftspeople in the United States.

About Highland Capital Partners
For twenty years Highland Capital Partners has taken a sector-focused approach to investing in exceptional seed through later stage growth companies in the healthcare, internet & digital media and technology markets. Highland actively seeks to provide the right mix of strategic guidance, hands-on leadership and deep industry domain expertise for helping entrepreneurs and their teams become market-leading organizations. With over $3 billion of committed capital, Highland has offices in Boston, Silicon Valley, Shanghai and Geneva.

About Canaan Partners
Canaan Partners is a global venture capital firm that invests in people who turn visionary ideas into valuable and significant technology & healthcare companies. Canaan were early investors in some of the world’s leading technology companies, including Acme Packet, CommerceOne, DoubleClick and and as well as healthcare giants Cerexa, Dexcom, Northstar Neuroscience and Peninsula Pharmaceuticals.