India’s Diamond Trade Is Suffering. Why Isn’t America’s? – by Joshua Freedman (Rapaport Magazine – July 11, 2024)

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Weak demand and a supply glut have created a perfect storm for manufacturers. But the only true solution is at the consumer level.

Indian manufacturers view the current market situation as something close to a crisis. The desperation is similar to that during last year’s deep downturn. Polished prices are falling, and sightholders are losing money on rough.

But American dealers are happier. They say there is demand from retailers, albeit not at the peak levels they saw in 2021 and early 2022. They enjoyed decent sales at the Las Vegas shows, and trading is better now than before the exhibitions. So why the discrepancy?

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Do Consumers Care About Diamond Origin? – by Joshua Freedman (Rapaport Magazine – June 20, 2024)

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Panelists at RapNet event highlight provenance challenges.

One of the ongoing questions in the diamond industry is whether shoppers care about the source of the stones they buy. For Olivia Landau, CEO of online natural-diamond retailer The Clear Cut, the problem is more fundamental.

“Everyone just assumes that natural diamonds come from one place, and it’s Africa, and Africa’s one country, and it is a blood diamond,” Landau said in a RapNet panel discussion at the recent JCK Las Vegas show. “We are starting from square one.”

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New platinum alloy to transform jewellery making – by Darren Parker (MiningWeekly.com – July 3, 2024)

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The World Platinum Investment Council (WPIC) has highlighted the launch of a new platinum alloy named Inoveo Platinum, which it believes has the potential to transform platinum jewellery design and manufacturing.

Established by Platinum Guild International (PGI) USA, Inoveo Platinum was codeveloped by mining major Anglo American and materials designer and developer Alloyed following years of research and development.

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HOW LAB-GROWN DIAMONDS UPENDED THE INDUSTRY AND COULD END UP CHANGING THE WORLD – by Matthew Hart (Crime Reads – June 20, 2024)

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Matthew Hart on mayhem in the diamond industry.

The diamond world was stunned when De Beers, the storied diamond miner, announced this month it was ditching its lab-grown diamond business. De Beers had been selling lab-grown gems online through its Lightbox brand for six years, at prices its competitors found hard to beat.

But the lab-grown diamond price was crashing, and De Beers will now focus its $94 million Oregon diamond factory away from gemstone production and onto something much more exciting: diamonds for targeted industrial uses.

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Furious debate breaks out over lab-grown diamonds – by Jane Herz (Daily Mail/MSN.com – June 13, 2024)

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A wild debate has broken out about whether or not lab-grown diamonds are the real deal – with some claiming that they ‘hold no value’ and are not acceptable for an engagement ring. Lab-grown diamonds have long been mired in controversy, and are a huge topic of debate for many brides-to-be.

Like their name, lab-grown diamonds are in fact diamonds that are made in a lab instead of being mined underground. According to Brides, the lab-grown stones are produced in an environment that is extremely similar to the Earth’s surface, meaning that they have the same chemical and molecular makeup.

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For Diamonds, It Matters Who De Beers Hooks Up With Next – by Carol Ryan (MSN.com/Wall Street Journal – June 8, 2024)

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Is it more romantic to buy a diamond that formed in the bowels of the earth than one grown in a lab? Young American couples don’t think so.

That is awkward for diamond miner De Beers, especially now that it is looking for a new owner. Mining conglomerate Anglo American, which has been a top shareholder in the world’s best-known diamond producer for almost a century, wants to sell or separately list it as part of a radical breakup plan.

The diamond industry is going through a rough patch, so the timing isn’t great. Jewelry sales boomed in 2022 as consumers splurged on luxury goods, but last year they pulled back. Weak demand has sent diamond prices to 2003 levels, says Liberum analyst Ben Davis.

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The True Story Behind the Hulu Documentary The Jewel Thief – by Mariah Espada (Time Magazine – July 13, 2023)

 

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The Jewel Thief, a documentary out July 13 on Hulu, details the life of Gerald Blanchard, once called the “world’s most ingenious thief.” The film goes beyond the details of Blanchard’s notable crown jewel robbery, uncovering his complex, world-spanning decades of crimes and the story of the detectives who finally caught him.

Filmmaker Landon Van Soest first learned about Blanchard around 2007, when he made national headlines for returning an Austrian crown jewel known as the Sisi Star that he had stolen in 1998. In making the documentary, Van Soest aspired to dig deeper than what meets the eye about Blanchard and his crimes.

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JCK Las Vegas Reflects Patchy Diamond Market – by Joshua Freedman (Rapaport Magazine – June 5, 2024)

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SI-clarity goods performed well, but overall trading was mixed.

Diamond trading at JCK Las Vegas set a cautious tone as the US consumer market remained uncertain, exhibitors reported.

The important fair, which ended Monday, mirrored the mixed trends visible in the sector. Loose-diamond suppliers gave varied reviews, with lab-grown competition continuing to impact sales. Certain categories of natural — chiefly stones with SI clarity — performed well.

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De Beers to Stop Producing Lab-Grown Diamonds for Jewelry – by Joshua Freedman (Rapaport Magazine – June 2, 2024)

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De Beers will cease creating synthetic diamonds for its Lightbox consumer brand in a strategic revamp that will also see it manufacture and sell natural polished. “We believe the value of lab-grown diamonds lies in technology rather than in jewelry,” De Beers CEO Al Cook said Friday at the company’s JCK Las Vegas breakfast event.

The miner’s Element Six business will streamline its three chemical vapor deposition (CVD) plants, merging them all into its $94 million facility in Portland, Oregon. That plant will pivot into a technology hub that produces diamonds for industrial applications, executives explained.

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Rarest of Rare: The Legendary Story of Muzo Emerald Colombia – by Katerina Perez (Jewellery Insights by Katerina Perez – May 28, 2024)

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When the Conquistadors landed in the New World, in their quest for El Dorado at the end of the 15th century, they searched incessantly for emerald mines. It would take another hundred years until the first emeralds were extracted from Muzo at the heart of Boyacá, 60 miles northwest of Colombia’s capital, Bogota.

From the 16th century onwards, Muzo emeralds have held a lofty position in the mineral world thanks to their rich green colours, wonderful clarity and distinctive crystal formation. First, they were prized by the Spanish and European royal courts, followed by the Mughal rulers of India, and then by contemporary waves of celebrities, such as Elizabeth Taylor.

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Discover the History of Place Vendôme in Paris – by Laura Beaney (Tatler Asia – October 31, 2019)

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Few destinations stir up a sense of unparalleled luxury and cinematic history like Place Vendôme. From its seminal maisons to its storied clients and the magnificent jewels they covet, we pinpoint the exceptional moments that left a lasting imprint on the legacy of high jewellery

At the epicentre of exceptional jewellery lies one Parisian address: Place Vendôme. Its history, punctuated by war, revolt and the rise and fall of dynasties is almost as dazzling as the pieces its workshops produce. Completed in 1699 by Jules Hardouin-Mansart, whose design stamp can be traced across France’s architectural high points, from the Palace of Versailles to Notre-Dame, the ambitious feat of urban design was initiated to frame the statue of then ruler Louis XIV.

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Loved ‘Heeramandi’ on Netflix? 6 things you didn’t know about its Mughal-inspired jewellery – by Amrita Katara (Tatler Asia – May 22, 2024)

 

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Indian filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s latest Netflix series, Heeramandi: The Diamond Bazaar has been making waves since it released earlier this year. Set in 1920s Lahore, in pre-independent India, it depicts the lives of tawaifs (courtesans or dancing girls who performed exclusively for the nobility), amid India’s fight for freedom from British rule. The eight-episode saga is not only a study in culture, colour and historical grandeur, but it is also a visual feast of outfits and exquisite jewellery infused heavily with Mughal influences.

As the intricate storyline of Heeramandi unfolds, so do the layers of ornate costumes and breathtaking jewels. The task of bringing these historical adornments to life was entrusted to jewellery designers Vinay and Anshu Gupta of Shri Paramani Jewels of New Delhi. The duo, who created 10,000 pieces of high jewellery for the show, belongs to a family who in the old times were the treasurers of the Mughals themselves.

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Lab diamonds just won a battle, not the war – by Cecilia Jamasmie (Mining.com – May 8, 2024)

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After a brief surge in diamond jewellery demand during the pandemic, diamond miners are now grappling with an oversupply that is forcing them to reduce the excess inventory. The prices of natural diamonds have dropped by almost 20% compared to a year ago, following a surge in 2022, but were higher ten years ago.

Anglo American’s De Beers, the largest diamond producer by value, has been cutting its output due to sluggish demand. Sanctions-ridden Russian miner Alrosa, the world’s largest producer of rough diamonds by volume, stopped publishing sales data in early 2022, cut its output by 2.8% to 34.6 million carats last year.

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De Beers Cuts Prices of Smaller Rough Diamonds – by Joshua Freedman (Rapaport Magazine – May 7, 2024)

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De Beers has reduced prices for smaller rough diamonds at this week’s sight, with manufacturers saying the adjustments aren’t enough to ease their profitability challenges. The miner cut the price of 3-grainer (0.75-carat) and smaller goods by 4% to 6%, market insiders told Rapaport News Tuesday. In 4- to 6-grainers (1 to 1.5 carats), the price decline was around 4%, they estimated.

Prices of 5- to 10-carat rough increased slightly, though this partly reflected modifications to the assortments, they added. Like-for-like price movements are hard to estimate because changes to the product mix can skew them, the sources cautioned. De Beers declined to comment.

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Rock & Ruler: Golconda’s Trail of Diamonds – by Amrita Amesur (Sarmaya – June 17, 2021)

https://sarmaya.in/

What the chain of diamonds trickling from the marketplaces of Golconda tells us about the dynasties that branded and traded, and won and lost them

When it comes to diamonds, they say, nothing surpasses Golconda. Before the current problematic era of Blood diamonds, Golconda’s rocks shone the brightest. The only known source of the stone till the early 18th century, the mines of Golconda produced diamonds unparalleled in their ability to spawn legends and bewitch the beholder.

These mines put the gem on the world map and marked India as the original home of the adamas, the Greek root word for this indestructible jewel. For this reason, Golconda’s ancient mines, pre-dating dynasties of the last two millennia, were a source of wealth and influence for the powers that controlled them through the ages.

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