Owner of Moda Fina hands over business to employees

Owner of Moda Fina hands over business to employees

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PHOENIX -

It's one of the most recognizable jewelry stores in the entire valley, selling high-end pieces of jewelry and diamonds. But the owner of Moda Fina Find Diamonds and Jewelry is ready to call it quits.

Does that mean his employees will be out of work? No. The owner is doing something rather unique -- handing over the business to his employees -- no strings attached.

Yuri Shemesh is retiring, and instead of selling his store for a profit, he passed it on to the people who helped him create a legacy.

"It's almost like, it feels like they're wearing part of me," says Shemesh.

24 years ago, Shemesh moved to Arizona to share his love of fine jewelry with Arizona residents.

"It was my destiny because I remember I was 26 years old, I was living in Belgium and then I decided to open an office here, and one thing led to another and I met my wife," he says.

But now the 50-year-old wants to focus on the charity he created to help Hispanic children continue their education. Instead of selling the store, he's passing it on to his 12 employees.

"I felt that this is a better way for me to give back to who gave me so much."

"I really believe the Lord prompted him and inspired him to do this good deed and believe in us that we could do it," says 17-year employee Penny Schmidt.

"I think we're ready, cause Yuri gave us a lot of the tools to work with from the get-go and let us be, and I think that we can do it," says 12-year employee Orly Schulgasser.

Moda Fina means "fine style" in Italian, and that's the perfect way to describe how Shemesh is going out -- with style.

FOX 10's Kristen Keogh has more.

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