Wednesday, July 30, 2008

De Beers' Forevermark opens grading labs

Forevermark, a separately managed division of the De Beers Group formerly known as De Beers Group Marketing, announced the opening of the first Forevermark diamond-grading laboratories this week.

The labs, which are located in Antwerp, Belgium, and Maidenhead in the United Kingdom, will grade only diamonds that meet Forevermark standards.

At the same time the diamonds are graded, they will be inscribed with the Forevermark icon and an identification number.

In addition to the opening of the labs, Forevermark announced the launch of a new Web site for Forevermark Diamantaires,

To be considered a Forevemark diamond, stones must be at least 0.18 carat, SI2 clarity, J color and have a cut rated "good."

In a statement, Forevermark Chief Executive Officer Francois Delage called the opening of the labs a "historic moment" for Forevermark.

"We believe that by offering Forevermark diamantaires the opportunity to have their Forevermark diamond accompanied by a Forevermark grading report we are meeting the needs of consumers, jewelers and diamantaires. Forevermark grading laboratories will use the most advanced technologies and offer the highest levels of integrity, consistency and quality," he said.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

De Beers Opens First Mines outside Africa

De Beers on 25th July 2008 officially opened its first two mines outside of Africa—Snap Lake and Victor Mines in Canada.

Together Snap Lake and Victor Mines are expected to produce two million carats per year.

“Never before have we opened two mines at the same time and never before have had we opened a mine outside of Africa,” Nicky Oppenheimer said. “It is gratifying to see not only the contribution these mines will make to De Beers but the contribution they are already making to the communities in which they are based.”

Jim Gowans who is overseeing the development and launch of both mines added, “It has taken us several years and over $1 billion to build each mine. We have also built strong relationships with local communities, and upheld the highest environmental standards. I’m very proud of what we have accomplished.”

The Snap Lake Mine located in Canada’s Northwest Territories. It is the country’s first fully underground diamond mine, De Beers said. It will employee 560 people during production and will have an annual production rate of 1.4 million carats. The mine life is expected to be close to 20 years.

The Victor Mine, located near Attawapiskat First Nation in northern Ontario, will be the province’s first diamond mine. It will employee 400 people during production and will have an annual production rate of 600,000 carats. Victor is one of 18 kimberlite pipes discovered on the property, 16 of which are diamondiferous. The Victor kimberlite has a surface area of 15 hectares and consists of two pipes that coalesce at the surface: Victor Main and Victor Southwest. The mine will be open-pit with an expected life of 12 years and a total project life of 17 years.

De Beers notes that more than C$650 million has been spent with Aboriginal businesses.

In addition, agreements have been reached with the Governments of the Northwest Territories and Ontario for De Beers to make available for sale ten percent of diamonds from the Snap Lake Mine and Victor Mines, by value, to provincially approved manufacturers who have successfully fulfilled the Diamond Trading Company’s client selection criteria.

Friday, July 25, 2008

African Diamonds Declares Dispute over AK6 Joint Project with De Beers

AIM-listed Botswana diamond exploration company African Diamonds has said that De Beers will not accept the terms of the mining license from the Botswana government on the AK6 diamond deposit. De Beers, it added, wants to delay the project, citing power supply as the main reason.

African Diamonds, which made an offer to purchase De Beers’ stake in the mining project, with an aim at developing the mine according to a timetable submitted to the government, has declared a dispute in the terms of the shareholder agreement, according to Thomson Financial.

De Beers was not immediately available to comment.

African Diamonds has a 28.38 percent stake in Boteti Exploration, its joint venture with De Beers on the project. In April it was announced that Boteti’s mineral license application had been approved by the government.

“The shareholders of Boteti anticipate that the final negotiations will be concluded with sufficient time to enable AK6 to be in production by the end of 2009,” the April statement read.

John Teeling, chairman of African Diamonds, said at the time, “We believe we have the full backing of De Beers and the government of Botswana to move this world-class project toward production.”

De Beers has claimed that the economics of the project are hindered by power supply issues. It therefore reported to the board of Boteti that the project should be delayed.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

FATF Published Guidance Document for Precious Stones

The Financial Action Task Force has approved a detailed guidance document for the precious stones and metals trades. The Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) said in a release that it welcomed the move.

The document lays out how a more sophisticated a risk-based approach can be developed for those who deal in precious metals and stones, including the diamond industry. For the diamond business, this means that the specific concerns of the diamond industry will be taken into account more adequately.

Issues specific to the diamond trade addressed in the document include the physical inspection of diamonds at the official import-export offices, business with registered diamond dealers and bourse members, the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme for rough diamonds and a payment system through recognized and specialized banks.

AWDC notes that it was extensively involved in the consultation process that let to agreement on the guidance document, since the summer of 2007. The approval was announced at the FATF plenary in June.

FATF is an inter-governmental body that works to develop policies to combat money laundering and terrorist financing.

AWDC spokesperson Philip Claes commented, “We welcome the fact that, with its new guidance document, FATF has finally recognized the positive impact that the structure, regulation and supervision of the diamond trade in Antwerp has had in reducing money laundering risk.”

The Belgian government was also involved in finalizing and approving the FATF guidance. AWDC noted that it will work further with the Belgian authorities in establishing a more adequate and efficient money laundering regulation for the diamond industry, which will be based on the new FATF guidance document operate within the framework of Belgium’s implementation of the anticipated third EU directive concerning money laundering.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Lakhi Marketing Patented Diamond Brand Online

Sparklers International DMCC, part of DTC Sightholder Lakhi Group, will use Polygon as a strategic component in marketing their patented diamond brand, Pristine Hearts. The diamonds have a heart that appears to float within the diamond.

It took the company seven years of research to develop the brand, a collection of diamonds that “captures the meaning of true love in all its facets,” the company said in a release, adding that the Pristine Hearts diamond is the only diamond with a true heart shape inside, visible from the crown and the pavilion view.

The cut has 73 facets and each has a unique individual identification number. Lakhi uses J / SI goods and better in sizes of 25 pointers and larger for this line.

Sparklers International DMCC will be using Polygon to reach and locate retailers worldwide to carry the new diamond brand.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Online Moissanite Retailer Program Launched

The creator of moissanite, Charles & Colvard, has launched an authorized Internet seller program for moissanite, a joint effort between Charles & Colvard and its web retailers. All of the e-commerce retailers in the program have been pre-screened, met the program criteria and have been sponsored by a Charles & Colvard distributor or manufacturer.

The ‘Moissanite created by Charles & ColvardTM Authorized Internet Retailer Program’ retailers are HSN, JCPenney, Joseph Schubach Jewelers, Moissanite Collection and Moissanite Fine Jewelry.

Charles & Colvard explained the initiative as a response to an upsurge in consumers buying and researching jewelry on the Internet.

For customers, shopping for moissanite through [this] program helps ensure satisfaction as well as helps to assure authenticity of the moissanite they purchase. Plus, by using the select group of retailers, it guarantees the customer their moissanite purchase is accompanied by the Charles & Colvard Certificate of Authenticity and Limited Warranty,” the company said in a release.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Court favors eBay in Tiffany trademark suit

EBay has scored a victory in a trademark infringement suit brought by luxury jewelry house Tiffany and co, which alleges that counterfeits of its goods are being improperly sold through the auction site, Women's Wear Daily (WWD) has reported.

Federal judge Richard Sullivan ruled in favor of eBay, entering the decision at the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York on Monday, saying that it is the trademark owner's burden to police its mark. The ruling said that Tiffany failed to prove claims that eBay was liable for trademark infringement and dilution, false advertising and unfair competition for facilitating the sale of counterfeit goods.

According to WWD, eBay argued that it is simply a service connecting sellers with buyers, and that since it never holds the counterfeit goods in its own possession, it cannot be held responsible for their sale.

Just two weeks ago, a French court ordered eBay to pay LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton 40 million euros (about $63 million), ruling that eBay did not do enough to prevent the sale of counterfeit goods on its site.

Gem Diamonds’ Yellow Diamonds Tenders Nets $28,860 p/c

A tender of four intense and vivid polished yellow diamonds were sold in Antwerp for an average price of $28,860 per carat. The Gem Diamonds goods, mined at Ellendale, had a total weight of 15.7 carats.

One of the diamonds was a 7.1 carat cushion cut vivid yellow diamond which sold for $52,000 per carat. Another was a 2.3 carat cushion cut vivid yellow diamond which sold for $19,000 per carat.

The tender of the Ellendale goods follow recent trials on a selection of its white diamonds from the Letšeng Mine, known for their high quality and top prices. They, too, were cut and polished before they were sold.

According to Clifford Elphick, CEO of Gem Diamonds, “significant additional margin” can be made from selling their goods polished. “We are very encouraged by the results,” he added.

Monday, July 14, 2008

De Beers increases rough diamond prices by 5 percent

LONDON (Reuters) - The world's biggest diamond producer De Beers boosted rough diamond prices by an average of 5 percent this month, the firm said on Friday.

The price hike by the group's marketing arm, the Diamond Trading Company (DTC), came amid strong demand for diamonds in Asian emerging markets and tight supply, which led to price increases of 8.5 percent earlier this year.

A De Beers official said last month that buoyant diamond demand from China, India and the Middle East would more than offset expected slower sales in the United States, which accounts for half of the diamond jewelry market.

De Beers, 45 percent owned by mining group Anglo American (AAL.L: Quote, Profile, Research ), made the price increase during the firm's July "sight" this week, one of 10 week-long events during the year at which the DTC markets rough diamonds to tightly-screened clients.

"Some increases have been made at the July Sight, the overall effect of which is plus 5 percent," De Beers said in an email in response to a query.

De Beers said in February that it expected a rebound in its rough diamond sales this year after a dip in 2007.

Sales fell 3.7 percent to $5.9 billion (2.97 billion pounds) last year, but supply shortages were expected to keep prices strong and help to lift the 2008 sales figures, De Beers had said.

De Beers, which controls around 40 percent of the diamond market, posted flat output of diamonds last year at 51 million carats and a steady result is expected in 2008.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Dubai and Thailand explore mutual trade opportunities for gems and colored stones

UAE. Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC) and the Thai Gem and Jewelry Traders Association (TGJTA) signed an agreement today, making TGJTA the first affiliate member of the Dubai Gems Club (DGC), a strategic initiative of the Colored Stones and Pearls Division at DMCC.

This agreement will boost trade opportunities between Dubai and Thailand, both fast-emerging markets for gems and colored stones. Thailand, a major global gem trading and processing centre, is the second largest exporter of gems and jewelry in the world with annual exports over US$2 billion. The country enjoys rich natural deposits of ruby and sapphire and is known as the heart of South East Asian gemstone production and trade.

Under the terms of the agreement, TGJTA members will access DGC’s network of local and international markets. In addition, as an affiliate member, TGJTA will also have access to the dedicated trading facilities of the Dubai Gems Club located at Almas Tower. DMCC serves as an international hub bridging gemstone producing and consuming countries, and facilitates the trade of colored stones through Dubai via the Dubai Gems Club.

Gaiti Rabbani, Executive Director-Colored Stones and Pearls Division, DMCC, said: “We strongly feel that the colored stones industry needs a unified and comprehensive marketing strategy that will drive demand across the emerging consumer markets. DMCC’s affiliation with TGJTA will offer Thailand’s colored stones community a dedicated platform to further boost their trade, and will in turn positively impact the entire value chain of the colored stones industry. In addition, our partnership with TGJTA will add value to Dubai’s AED 70 million [US$20 million] annual colored stones trade.”

“The affiliate membership status is new to DGC and we are pleased to work with a reputable association such as TGJTA in this Endeavour. We expect to see an equally strong response from other respected international gemstone organizations as a result of the various benefits derived from this membership status,” she added.

Vichai Assarasakorn, President, TGJTA, said: “The TGJTA has always sought to lead the way in the international community to promote Thailand’s colored stones trade. Our association with DMCC will pave the way for a dedicated market for over 200 of our members. We look forward to partnering with the Dubai Gems Club to further develop the jewelry and colored stones trade.”

TGJTA was established over three decades ago to serve Thailand’s gem and jewelry traders and manufacturers. It has concentrated on creating a cohesive organization dedicated to developing and expanding the industry for the benefit of all. TGJTA’s leadership and members have served to grow what was once a cottage industry in Thailand into one of the world’s leading gem and jewelry manufacturing and trading centers.

Source: BI-ME

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

ICA to Hold International Gem Show in Dubai

The International Colored Gemstone Association (ICA) will hold its first ever international gem show focused on the loose colored gemstone industry. The ICA International Gem Show Dubai 2008 will be held October 13-15.

The event is the first gem show held under the patronage of the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC). “Dubai is rapidly becoming recognized as the gateway for commodities to the Middle East. Favorable importation duties for exhibitors and buyers make this an optimal B2B experience for all attendees,” the ICA said in a release.

All suppliers at the show are ICA, DMCC or Dubai Gems Club members Show organizers note that, because the event is focused entirely on colored gems, it is a better environment for this sector of the industry to do business. “Our aim is to organize a show featuring the essence of the industry,” explained ICA President Andrew Cody.

The event will be held at Al Bustan Rotana and airport pick-up service will be provided for attendees. A cocktail reception, gala dinner and fashion show will also be on the line up. The last day of the show is open to the general public.

Gitanjali Gems Interested in Whitehall

Indian diamond and jewelry manufacturer and retailer Gitanjali Gems is among the companies interested in buying the Whitehall Jewelers Inc., according to a report in The Economic Times of India.

The company is looking to pay in the range of $80 million to $90 million for the Chicago-based jewelry chain, which recently filed for bankruptcy protection, according to the publication.

Gitanjali’s bid for Whitehall is part of Indian company’s move to strengthen its foothold in the U.S. jewelry market, according to the publication. US diamond jewelry sales account for about 50 percent of the global diamond jewelry sales. Diamond jewelry sales comprise 55 percent of total jewelry sales in the US.

In 2006, the company acquired US-based Samuels Jewelers.

Whitehall Jewelers Holdings, which operates Whitehall jewelers Inc., is controlled by private equity firm Prentice Capital Management. It operates approximately 373 retail stores in 39 states under the Whitehall and Lundstrom brand names, and employs 2,852 people.

Gitanjali Gems's principal activity is to manufacture, export, and market jewelry, according to Thomson Financial. It operates in two segments namely: Diamonds includes manufacturing and export of cut and polished diamonds and sales in local market. Jewelry includes manufacturing and export of plain gold and diamond studded jewelry. The Group markets its products under the brand names namely D'Damas, Asmi, Sangini, Nakshatra, Gili, Giantti, and Collection G. The diamond manufacturing facilities are located at Borivali in Mumbai and at Surat in Gujarat. Its products are exported to the United States, Europe, Hong Kong, Japan, China, Middle East, and Thailand. In April 2007, the Group acquired D 'Damas Jewellery India Private Limited and in May 2007, acquired Gitanjali Lifestyles limited. Also during the year it acquired Gitanjali Ventures DMCC, Dubai and Gitanjali, USA Inc.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Jewelry Television Web site starts accepting PayPal

Jewelry Television (JTV) and PayPal announced today that Jewelry Television's Web site,, will now accept PayPal for purchases of jewelry, gemstones and other collectibles.

PayPal is chosen by millions of online shoppers for its ease of use and high level of security.

JTV has chosen to partner with PayPal after reviewing consumer research indicating that U.S. online consumers have a high level of trust with PayPal and many shoppers would not purchase online unless PayPal was an option.

When paying with PayPal, the consumer's financial information is not shared with the merchant, ensuring the highest level of protection and security.

Consumers can also choose from various payment options to fund transactions including credit card, bank account and PayPal account balance. Using only an email address and password, PayPal account holders can quickly and easily complete transactions in seconds.

"We are thrilled that PayPal users can now buy their favorite jewelry and gemstones at," said Dana Stadler, General Manager of Merchant Services and Marketing at PayPal. "PayPal's virtual wallet offers customers the convenience of paying in the way they prefer." features more than 40,000 jewelry and gemstone items. "Adding PayPal as a payment option gives our customers more choices and greater convenience," noted James Thome, Senior Vice President, E-Commerce at Jewelry Television. "PayPal's millions of customers can now experience the unparalleled selection and value available at," he said.

In addition to using PayPal, Jewelry Television customers can use most major credit cards to make purchases at the site.

Source :- PayPal

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Charles and Colvard launches

New York—Lab-created moissanite source Charles and Colvard is launching a new, interactive Web site,, to help consumers and jewelry retailers understand the unique jewel.

The site, launched during the second quarter, educates consumers about what moissanite is, how it came to be and how it's different from other gemstones. In addition, the site also educates retailers who sell jewelry set with Charles and Colvard-created moissanite.

"The marketing and advertising of gemstones and jewels, particularly on the Internet, can be confusing and, in some cases, misleading to the public," Charles and Colvard Chief Executive Office Bob Thomas said in a media release. "On, consumers will find fully documented information that serves as an excellent tool in helping them identify and truly understand why moissanite is such an amazing jewel." offers the following educational tabs:

A Unique Jewel: Explains the characteristics and science behind the jewel's brilliance, fire, hardness, durability and stability.

Compare Moissanite: Explores the differences between moissanite, diamonds, cubic zirconia and other gemstones.

History: Details the history of silicon carbide and its transformation from its discovery more than 110 years ago into the unique jewel known today as moissanite.

Creating Moissanite: Details the course of turning rough silicon carbide into moissanite jewels, the process of grading and hand-faceting moissanite, as well as identifying the benefits of the company's certificate of authenticity and limited warranty.

Learn more: Frequently asked questions, including a glossary and video answers by world-renowned scientist and gemologist Dr. Kurt Nassau.

For more information about moissanite and Charles and Colvard, visit, or

Namibia: Erongo Small Miners Get EC Funding

The Erongo Region Small Scale Miners Association (ERSSMA) has received N$8,3 million from the European Commission (EC) to enable them to effectively mine tourmaline gemstones in the region.

The money was channeled through the National Planning Commission to the Erongo Regional Council, which also contributed 5 percent towards the N$8,3 million.

The Erongo Region's stakeholder’s forum, including some mines in the region and constituency councilors, mines ministry, Geological Survey of Namibia and the small miners themselves, approached the EC on behalf of the small miners and successfully secured the grant.

The small miners are currently mining the tourmaline stones without proper equipment using rudimentary equipment such as 'koevoets' and hammers for the past 13 years or more, while some of the equipment is even handmade.

Some of the self-employed miners, who come from other parts of the country, have been camping along the Karibib-Otjimbingwe gravel road and walk to the nearby mountains - as far as 20 km - every morning to mine the gemstones.

The gems are mined at privately owned farm Neue Schwaben.

"We are working under harsh conditions without water. We use water that gathers in the holes that we dig for our daily use," said August Tsowaseb, a miner at the site.

Tsowaseb said they need machinery, especially to clean up the area and move some of the earth they dig out.

"It is good business if you are lucky. Sometimes you can get up to N$6000," Tsowaseb added.

The Deputy Director for Planning at the Erongo Regional Council, Vikurupa Kavendjii, said the regional council will buy equipment such as jackhammers and compressors for the small miners, once everything is sorted.

Some equipment has been bought already, while a consultant is looking at the small miners' 'shopping list', Kavendjii said.

He also added that the stake holder’s forum looked at the basic needs, marketing and processing needs of the small miners.

"I think small mining is becoming a major player. We realize some stones are even more valuable than diamonds."

The small miners now also receive training in semi-precious stones, cutting and polishing as well as in business and marketing areas.

"Sometimes they find blue tourmaline stones and don't even know their value," added Kavendjii.

The council is also planning to expose the small miners to a highly specialized country in small-scale mining such as India, in future.

The stakeholders forum has also developed a website, in order to market the semi-precious gemstones.

Kavendjii said the council is planning to build a proper marketing centre 30 km outside Usakos on the Swakopmund road, where a number of small miners are already showcasing their products.

The small miners might be asked to form cooperatives in order to use some of the large equipment such as compressors in groups.

A small rental fee will be charged for the equipment.

Kavendjii said a fund will be set up from this money to maintain and service the equipment.

About 1600 small miners, in all the constituencies where small-scale mining is taking place in the region, will benefit from the equipment.