Fenton & Co, an independent jewellery company leveraging technology in a bid to make the luxury engagement ring market more transparent, has closed a £850,000 Seed round.

The company’s round was led by Mustard Seed and drew support from The London Co-Investment Fund and various Angel investors.

Set up earlier this year by Laura Lambert, a serial entrepreneur, Fenton & Co. creates bespoke engagement and occasion rings using precious gemstones starting at £950.

Unlike traditional jewellers, where a two carat diamond ring will typically cost more than £18,000, Fenton & Co. offers the same size for £5,000.

The company works directly with local suppliers and dealers to source materials, claiming to offer customers full supply chain transparency.

Lambert, the founder and CEO, commented: “The classic round solitaire diamond, made famous by iconic brands such as Tiffany’s and De Beers, has dominated the engagement ring market for many years. However, with a high-quality one-carat diamond costing upwards of £6,000, the cost is prohibitive for most Our designs are made for today’s more informed and intelligent consumers who are looking for a luxurious, unique piece that comes at an affordable price and has been created responsibly.

“Fenton & Co. rings are intricately designed to last for a lifetime using only the highest quality gemstones, adopting the same sophisticated manufacturing techniques pioneered by leading high jewellery houses, thanks to the first-hand experience of Kathrin, who heads up our manufacturing team. Each of our rings are made to order for the consumer that wants a beautiful ring that truly celebrates every element of their own – or their partners – identity, values and personality. ”

Commenting on the investment, Orson Stadler, principal at Mustard Seed, added: “Fenton & Co. is uniquely positioned to address growing demands for price and supply transparency, with its innovative ‘fair production and fair pricing’ approach. Mustard Seed is an early-stage investor focused on investments into companies where there is a clear and mutually reinforcing relationship between the generation of financial returns and social good, which supports Fenton & Co.’s mission to a tee.

“We have been hugely impressed by Laura’s ability to blend a quantitative and iterative product approach while maintaining an authentic brand, and we are very excited to see the progression of Fenton & Co. in becoming global force for good across the engagement ring and broader jewellery industries.”

Camilla Dolan, an early investor into flower subscription business Bloom & Wild and food box subscription service Gousto, made a significant contribution to the startup’s round.

Dolan said: “Fenton & Co. is provocative to the traditional notion of a diamond being ‘the engagement ring’; a concept that no longer resonates with the reality of modern-day relationships. Fenton & Co.’s business model also demonstrates the huge opportunity that technology presents to improve transparency in the supply chain in the jewellery industry; an industry that has traditionally lacked transparency in every way.

“Laura has great energy, a strong vision and passion for reinventing the engagement ring for the modern-day consumer. These qualities, combined with her exceptional understanding of the customer thanks to her strong retail background, led to my investment in Fenton & Co. I very much look forward to supporting Laura through this stage of the process, and going forwards as Fenton & Co. comes to market.”

Akshata Murty of Catamaran Ventures made a personal investment in the company. Murty also backed Bloom & Wild in its early stages.