MILAN — Pomellato on Tuesday unveiled a new sponsorship program in partnership with the Galdus professional training school, called “Virtuosi [plural of virtuous].”

The Milan-based jewelry firm, controlled by Kering, will provide experts to teach at Galdus, also based in Milan, structure seminars and offer apprenticeships to students. A classroom at the academy will be dedicated to Pomellato.

The Galdus Goldsmith Academy will help the brand protect “Italy’s rich craftsmanship and invest in the younger generation, passing on the precious knowhow to future generations,” said Pomellato chief executive officer Sabina Belli, praising the goldsmith program at Galdus. “This was a dream for us,” she added.

The company will help select students for a program that spans from three to seven years, after which they will receive a certificate as Specialized Craftsmanship Technicians for Manufactured Goldsmith Goods, which is recognized not only in Italy but also throughout Europe, Belli said.

“This is a new way to do training, a new, rich phase to work with a company and not only for a company,” said Diego Montrone, president of Galdus, noting the relevance in the industry of such a program, presented on the eve of Milan Fashion Week.


The stone setting on the Pomellato Tango bracelet.  Courtesy Image

Belli remembered how Pomellato was founded by Pino Rabolini, who died last month, “a goldsmith who hailed from a family of goldsmiths and who elevated craftsmanship at the highest level, in a modern and fresh way. Our goal is to preserve the tradition. We believe in the Italian genius, expression of spectacular beauty and craftsmanship, in areas that span from food and cars to music and fashion.”

She emphasized how the goldsmith art needs to be “not only protected and stimulated but also passed on” with the right training programs. She gave a shout-out to families, who should help “convey the message to their children that this is a rare and precious job, which requires not only technical skills but also a certain sensibility — it’s not mechanical,” and urged them “to accompany and facilitate this journey with pride.”

At its Milan headquarters, Pomellato employs around 100 artisans, and Belli said the goldsmith profession faces new technologies and also requires managerial skills, noting that the academy will help in the generational changes taking place in the industry.

“We need not only to feed the needs of the company but of the sector at large and the program will help sustain the development of this market,” she said. “We want to protect Italian excellency, avoid the risk of outsourcing in countries such as India, Thailand and China,” which offer low-cost labor.

Pomellato has organized laboratories with its own goldsmiths for the almost 100 Galdus students in this field for one year and Montrone said the jewelry house has “actively taken steps to create a link between enterprise and school in a common space.” Starting next year, the courses will be held in English and be open to foreign students, too, he said.