BDI NEWSLETTER - MAY 2017


Diamonds 1. Why millennials are going for experiences over diamonds? Millennials are going for experiences like destination weddings and vacations over diamonds. They are also wooed by non-conventional stones and other luxury items instead of diamonds. An analyst from Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Ashley Wallace explains this by saying that the millennials have become more value conscious, concerned with sustainability and ethical production and often value unique and individual products versus standardized and mass produced. A De Beers Insights report states that fine jewelry is not in the top 5 gift list of US women. Read more… Lab-grown diamonds 2. Hoover and Strong announces addition of Lab-grown diamonds A US based precious metal manufacturer, Hoover and Strong has introduced Lab-grown diamonds to their product selection. Called as Harmony Diamonds, they have also joined the league of jewelers like Ada Diamonds, Swarovski, Liberti Diamonds et al in creating awareness about the ethical and environmental harm caused by mined diamonds. Read more… Conflict diamonds 3. The hogwash of Kimberly Process, while conflict diamonds continue to enter the markets Kimberly process has been continuously misused to create a false impression that conflict stones have been virtually banished. Whereas, Kimberly Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) needs reforms and though many a times the process to redefine conflict diamonds have been identified and put forth, each time it has faced oppositions from factions within the industry. It has been noted in some investigative report that blood diamonds are still entering the market and countries like Central African Republic (CAR) and diamond trading centres like Antwerp and Dubai are still a part of it. To avoid conflict diamonds, ‘fingerprinting’ for stones was a hot topic some time back but Executive board member of Diamond Development Initiative (DDI) – Dr. Gavin Hilson had mentioned some time back “KPCS is great on paper but relies on good governance, and many diamond producing countries have no institutions to provide that stability.”, adding that a material’s background could be hard to identify. GIA’s Stephen Morisseau had echoed this view that currently not sufficient technical and scientific methods exist to determine origin of diamonds. Read more… Diamond Industry 4. Winsome Diamonds responds to media allegations Many media reports including DIB’s 10th May issue has accused Mr. Jatin Mehta, promoter of Winsome Diamonds and Jewellery Ltd. of defrauding a consortium of Indian banks to the tune of USD 1.25 billion. In an e-mail interview, Mr. Harshad Udani – Director of Winsome Diamonds explains the wrong media allegations against the company and Mr. Mehta. While the DIB issue itself says the transaction was genuine, State Bank of Mauritius has already settled with Winsome Diamonds. Winsome Diamonds, a Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE Limited) listed company regularly makes submissions to the exchange and in its 5th May filing, have clarified its position. Read more… 5. How media misreported on Winsome Diamonds case Lot of media reporting was done on the Winsome Diamonds’ bank default case and alleged conspiracy by Mr. Jatin Mehta. A good amount of this coverage was by Indian news channel – Times Now. But as soon as some sections of media started probing the story and found out that much of the reporting was shoddy, inaccurate and false, Times Now rectified its mistake by removing all content and videos. Was Times Now misled by someone into believing the story as they reported it? Winsome Diamonds and Forever Precious Jewellery had also sent legal notices to Times Now and others pointing that the videos aired were false, scandalous and defamatory. Similarly, DIB’s Chaim Even-Zohar has done lot of misreporting. Read more…

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