IceLink is a Swiss luxury watch, fashion accessories and jewellery brand founded by California entrepreneur and watchmaker Andy Sogoyan.
IceLink timepieces are conceived and crafted to epitomize the parts and the sum of their name for a look that is fashion-forward, fun, and instantly recognizable. As cool as ice itself, as strong and precious as the diamonds they unapologetically flaunt, IceLink watches are a unique fusion of the jeweler’s art and the watchmaker’s craft. It’s not easy for a newcomer to make a splash in the traditional and rarefied world of fine watch making, but that’s exactly what IceLink did in 2007 when it unveiled its 6Timezone piece at Baselworld.
This iconoclastic model would soon become an icon, and shake up a notoriously staid industry, both literally and figuratively. IceLink’s creator, Andy Sogoyan, a jeweler by trade with a taste for all things extravagant, decided to suspend dozens of diamonds in one of the oversized watch’s six dials. Using an invisible liquid called IceFuel®, the diamonds appear to float across a field of fresh snow, sending mesmerizing sparks of sunlight out with each movement of the wrist.
IceLink quickly became the go to watch of movers and shakers, including a raft of celebrities who shared Sogoyan’s affinity for all that are big and bejeweled. One of the first famous fans of the 6Timezone “Snow” watch was the Black Eyed Peas’ Taboo, who landed the timepiece in hundreds of magazines and newspapers.
Sogoyan attributes an ever-growing list of celebrity aficionados to his willingness to take luxury to its pinnacle. He has created diamond cell phones, tiaras, cufflinks, and of course, over-the top custom watches for the likes of Fergie and Will.i.am (The Black Eyed Peas), Khloe Kardashian and Kyle Richards.
Subtlety has never been part of the IceLink lexicon, and when it comes to designing watches, Andy Sogoyan proudly refuses to censor himself. But he’s not just catering to his own larger-than-life and luxury-driven aesthetic. Before the IceLink launch, Sogoyan personally market-tested prototypes to overwhelming response from strangers in stores and airports around the world.
IceLink’s logo depicts a lioness, chosen for its symbolic meaning and attributes. Like a lioness, the Sogoyans and the IceLink brand thrive on pride, invincibility, non conformity, courage and beauty. The lioness also conveys messages that are particularly resonant to the Sogoyans – stand tall, show authority, and lead with a loving heart.
The lioness holds a torch emblazed with the word “ice” – a material that is solid and enduring, and an essential element that preserves and sustains. “Ice” also connotes the diamond, a strong, beautiful, and timeless precious stone. “Link” is the connection between all that is essential and all that is cool, as well as the bridge between the wearer and the global time zones on his or her IceLink watch.
The number 6 is an important recurring theme in the IceLink brand, and one that has great significance to the Sogoyans. The number 6 has always been auspicious to the family and the company. Founder Andy Sogoyan was born on 06-06 in the 60’s.
He started his business on 6th Street in Los Angeles, and now IceLink’s flagship boutique is located at 666 North Kilkea Drive in the same city. Most importantly, however, the 6 Timezone watch has become the IceLink signature.
Sogoyan followed a somewhat unusual path to watchmaking stardom. Born in 1963 in Yerevan, Armenia (USSR at the time), he comes from a long line of jewelers on his mother’s side of the family. When only thirteen, he moved with his family to Los Angeles, and worked in his uncle’s jewelry store while attending Hollywood High School.
His uncle only made jewelry for women at the time, but Sogoyan offered to help him design a line for men as well. Buoyed by the success of the line, inspired by his Hollywood surroundings, and crazy for diamonds, Sogoyan embraced the talent that was in his blood.
In the early ‘80s, his own jewelry manufacturing company, CA Links, Inc., would become one of the largest urban jewelry wholesalers in the world. Taking design cues from the pop culture of the day (Sogoyan was a huge fan of Mr. T from “The A Team”), he began to think big and bold.
Sogoyan’s exuberant pieces, exquisite materials and impeccable quality were met with enthusiasm. He embraced early hip-hop style, and his rope chains, anchors, and big flashy crosses were among the first to market. Today, CA Links remains a leader and Sogoyan’s son Dino has taken the reins.
As the jewelry business grew, Sogoyan began to take note of renewed consumer interest in high-end watches, and he became intrigued with the idea of producing a gem-inspired version. It was a natural linkage and progression, so he set out to create watches that could easily double as jewelry.
But he realized the timepieces needed to be as impeccably crafted on the inside as on the outside, and so began a long series of trips to Switzerland to study the craft of horology. The crossover into fine watch making was facilitated by Sogoyan’s passion for the finest materials and meticulous finishing.
It was also bolstered by his daughter Suzy’s passion for the business. For the past several years, IceLink has been very much a family affair. Intrigued by the operations at the factory from a very young age, Suzy would beg her father to let her come to work. She quickly found her place in what at the time was a male dominated environment, and literally grew up with the brand. Suzy manages all brand development.
Official website: www.icelinkwatch.com