Interview with Ben De-Kalo, CEO and Founder of Worthy

Ben De-Kalo is the CEO and founder of Worthy, the premier marketplace for pre-owned luxury. Worthy is already becoming quite popular as the need for a fast and secure online marketplace is surely felt. Whether someone wants to sell their Rolex and use the funds for a holiday, or wants money for an unwanted diamond ring, we help them do it quickly, discreetly, and with high competitive offers. That being said, Worthy is committed to reaching everyone out there that has been let down by traditional venues such as Christie’s, local jewelry shops, or even eBay and showing them that there is a better solution available, Worthy of their high-end items.

Ben De-Kalo

What is it that you do exactly?

Every day I come in and do what I love, help individuals get the most for their luxury valuables while growing the business on a world-wide level. This role requires me to travel frequently and meet key industry players, vital in helping us reach our goal of being the largest marketplace for pre-owned luxury. I ensure that growth happens on both ends of the spectrum, expanding our client-base while bringing more professional buyers to compete for their valuable items.

What do you enjoy most about what you do?

I love the travel and the opportunities I have had to meet new people. Just recently at the JCK show in Las Vegas, my business partner and I were fascinated by the people we met there and were thrilled that they really took to our idea. Even better are the amazing reviews that we get from satisfied clients having just sold a valuable item using our auction platform. Hearing such positive feedback from the very individuals we seek to serve is truly a driving force and continues to motivate my work.

What would you say are the 3 best places you’ve ever stayed?

My top 3 favorite places that I have visited are NYC, Morocco and Miami. Each place is special to me for a different reason.

New York City is certainly at the top of my list however, I must admit that I used to live, work, and study in New York City and am now a frequent visitor. To me, New York City is where you learn the very foundations of business, in a very fast-paced environment, constantly moving and changing. The diversity that I experienced there also gave me great insight into the needs of my very own clients each having individual expectations of service. Now that I am a guest, I experience this firsthand.

Morocco is a place that I travel with friends. It is there that I can meet all kinds of people, both international and local. It is there that I truly learned that many people can be happy without the everyday comforts and luxuries that the western world lives on.

The city of Miami is where I used to vacation with my college buddies. It was especially during this leisure time that bonds were forged and we would think about our future goals. The kind of freedom felt there somewhat laid down the foundation for me to build my own future instead of following a predictable career path. Even then I was wanting to be an entrepreneur.

What’s been your most memorable dining experience to date?

When I was a college student at NYU, I felt very hungry one night, at about 2am (as most college students do). I went downstairs to grab a falafel at Mamoun’s Falafel (located at Macdougal St by Washington Square). I stood in line right after a real big guy who ordered one falafel meal. When he turned around I realized that this guy is Patrick Ewing, Hall of Fame basketball player who played most of his career with the NBA’s New York Knicks. This happened one night after the Knicks beat the Chicago Bulls. I looked at him and said “After yesterday’s game, you surely deserve it”. He looked at me smiled and replied “I sure do” and ordered another meal.

Have you rubbed shoulders with the rich and famous, either through your work or your travels?

While in Marrakesh (Morocco), my friends and I got into a very famous restaurant. We became quite friendly with 2 couples seating next to us. We ended up eating together, laughing, drinking and dancing all evening. Only right before we left did I find out that one of the guys we hung out with was actually Jim Kimsey, Founder and then Chairman of the board at AOL. As an entrepreneur, I sure felt that he was a celebrity!

What currently ranks highest on your travel wish list?

Maldives – I would love to just spend a week or two there with no iPad, iPhone, or any other internet devices. To rent a yacht and travel alongside the enchanting collection of more than a thousand islands boasting palatial resorts and pristine beaches would sure be nice, to say the least.

Thank you for taking part in our interview, Ben. It just goes to prove that the most memorable dining moments aren’t necessarily at high end restaurants!

If you would like to be interviewed on A Luxury Travel Blog in order to raise your profile, please contact us.

Comments (2)

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  1. Teffany says:

    That is great! What an opportunity of interviewing a great person. Congratulations!I love reading the conversations. And I learned a lot from him. Thanks.

  2. Selma says:

    Of all the companies disrupted by the internet, I would have never suspected that Christie’s or Sotheby’s would under threat, but even they are in the crosshairs now. Fascinating site!

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