High jewelry houses are increasingly going straight to the source to acquire rough diamonds that they will turn into their beautiful creations, writes Ming Liu in a feature for CNN. Typically, the larger category of rough diamonds are obtained by specialist diamond cutters and polishers who analyze each stone to determine the ideal cut in which to shape them, and only after this process are the polished gems usually presented to high jewelry houses.
In 2015, CAP Conseil, a sustainable development consultancy based in Belgium, presented the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) an idea for a fully ethical and traceable diamond jewelry project from small-scale origin. Two years later, the first MY FAIR DIAMOND collection has become a reality.
Stornoway Diamond Corporation has released its third quarter production and sales results from its Renard Diamond Mine in Quebec, with better ore grades leading to higher carat recoveries; the junior miner also saw growth in carats sold and an improving price per carat, though the issue of diamond breakage has yet to be solved. During the quarter, 506,380 tons of ore were processed compared to the plan of 540,000 tons (-6%).
The trend of high volumes of lower-priced rough diamond exports from Antwerp that started in full force during May continued to define the rough trade through the third quarter (July-Sept.), while the diamond capital’s polished trade recorded somewhat soft results. According to figures published by the AWDC, on a year-over-year basis, the volume of rough diamond exports during the quarter increased nearly 12%, totaling over 27 million carats, while their value actually declined by 13% to $2.7 billion. The volume of rough imports also increased 1.5% while their value also tumbled by 13%.
According to The Economic Times, Indian diamond traders that participate in rough diamond auctions at Mumbai's Indian Diamond Trading Centre (IDTC) are complaining that taxation issues are reducing their activity to mere window shopping. "Diamantaires can see the rough diamonds they bid for at the IDTC, but the delivery doesn't happen locally .. despite their successful bids at Bharat Diamond Bourse", the newspaper writes.
Last week, a delegation of leading jewelers and diamond traders from across Europe spent three days getting acquainted with their counterparts in Antwerp, enjoying a behind-the-scenes look at the diamond capital and doing business at high-level networking events.
Firestone Diamonds sold a total of 195,330 carats at their latest tenders in July and September 2017 in Antwerp, netting total sale proceeds of US$13.5 million, including the sale of the company's second >US$1 million stone. Nonetheless, the average value per carat fell to $69 from $107/ct.
The Antwerp World Diamond Centre today organized a festive launch of the Diamond Year celebrating 570 years of unbroken diamond trading in the city, sealing its place as the diamond capital of the world. The celebration was attended by Belgium's Secretary of State for Foreign Trade Pieter De Crem, fifteen ambassadors from diamond-related countries and featured 57 cakes - one for each decade of diamond trading in Antwerp, and, coincidentally, one for each facet of a brilliant cut diamond.
The Diamond Loupe team wishes all our Jewish friends a healthy, prosperous and happy 2017.
The Federation of Belgian Diamond Bourses (FDBD), the umbrella organization for Antwerp's four diamond bourses, has elected Philippe Barsamian as president. Mr. Barsamian has been a member since 1974 of the Antwerp Diamond Club. He became a member of the ADC's board of directors in 1998, serving as managing director from 2000 to to 2002, and as vice-chairman since 2002. He has also been a member of the Federation of Belgian Diamond Bourses since 2006, and was a member of the Antwerp World Diamond Centre's Board of Directors from 2008 to 2014.
Canadian miner Mountain Province Diamonds Inc., a 49% participant with De Beers Canada in the Gahcho Kué diamond mine located in Canada’s Northwest Territories, today announced its recently completed seventh diamond sale in Antwerp was the largest to date in terms of volume and value.
Government authorities in Tanzania have seized a shipment of diamonds belonging to London-based Petra Diamonds, saying the miner under-declared the value of its mineral exports. On August 31, customs seized a parcel containing 71,654 carats rough gems at the Dar Es Salam airport as they were being exported to Antwerp by Williamson Diamonds, in which Petra holds a 75% stake and the Tanzanian State 25%.
Dominion Diamond Corporation has announced an auction of fancy yellow rough diamonds in cooperation with I. Hennig Tenders. The auction viewings will take place in Israel and Antwerp. The auction will commence with viewings in Israel from October 29 to November 1, 2017 and will conclude in Antwerp from November 6 to 10, 2017. Participation in the viewings and the auction is by appointment only. For more information and to arrange a viewing request email email@example.com.
In response to Global Witness’ recent report, “An Inside Job”, the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) stated today it denounces the NGO’s accusations that European sanctions may have violated by the sale of Zimbabwean diamonds, originating from the Chinese-owned Anjin mining company, in Antwerp between December 2013 and September 2014.
This week, the Antwerp World Diamond Centre and the University of Antwerp hosted an “Innovation and Diamonds” conference at the Antwerp Diamond Bourse, featuring specialists from across the entire spectrum of the diamond trade, from mining to blockchain tech.
The value of polished diamond exports from Antwerp jumped by 7% y-o-y as their volume surged by 30% in the month of August. The sharpest value increase was in exports to Switzerland (+84%), while those to the US remained flat and those to Hong Kong fell by 10%. Polished imports fell by 14% in volume but only 3% in value. Meanwhile, the volume of rough diamond exports from Antwerp remained comparatively high in the holiday month of August as the industry took a three-week break.
Last week HRD Antwerp, a leading diamond grading and certification lab, detected two stones fashioned to imitate rough diamonds in an apparent attempt to fool a trader. This following a similar discovery of two large topaz crystals, fashioned as rough imitators, in July. The two rough stones were submitted to the lab, and in this case the stones “felt” like rough diamonds, however the density measurement identified the imitations as moissanite.
Sarine Technologies has announced it is, "expanding its services, adding 4Cs grading and diamond identification to its Sarine Profile Report." Using proprietary tools including its automated clarity, color, cut and light performance grading technologies along with advanced synthetic diamond and treatment detection methods, Sarine claims it will be able to, "deliver an unmatched level of accurate, repeatable and automated diamond grading with less subjectivity and far fewer human errors.
The University of Antwerp and the Antwerp World Diamond Centre, together with the Belgian Federation of Diamond Bourses and the Syndicate of the Belgian Diamond Industry (SBD) this morning kicked off a two-week summer school program - "From Mine to Finger: A deep dive into the world of Diamonds".
Laurelton Diamonds, a wholly owned subsidiary of Tiffany & Co., will be holding the viewings of its next Tender of Polished Diamonds at the Laurelton Diamonds offices in Antwerp, Belgium. The Tender will include a selection of single GIA certified stones and grouped lots of GIA certified and non-certified polished diamonds. These include rounds ranging in size from caraters to melee. The tender is scheduled from Tuesday 22nd August to Tuesday 29th August in Antwerp. Viewing appointments can be booked.
Despite ongoing breakage issues during processing, Canadian junior miner Stornoway Diamond experienced an uptick in prices for rough diamonds from its Quebec mine during the second quarter of 2017. At its two tenders held in Antwerp during the period, Stornoway achieved average diamond pricing of US$87 per carat, compared to US$81 per carat in the first quarter. “We are particularly encouraged by the steady increase in pricing for Renard diamonds as the market familiarises itself with our production,” said company President and CEO Matt Manson.
Mountain Province Diamonds - a 49% participant with De Beers Canada in the Gahcho Kué diamond mine located in Canada’s Northwest Territories - reports strong interest in Antwerp for Gahcho Kué Diamonds in Q2 2017 (ended June 30, 2017), despite a challenging rough diamond market. For the three months of Q2, MPD reported a net income of US$6 million (C$7.6 million) or US$0.39 (C$0.05) per share.
Firestone Diamonds, the AIM-listed junior mining company operating the Liqhobong Diamond Mine in the Kingdom of Lesotho (ownership Firestone 75%, Lesotho 25%), has revised its production guidance for the year to 30 June 2018 (FY 2018) to between 800,000 and 850,000 carats from previously-stated 1.0 million carats.
The trend of high volumes of rough diamond exports from Antwerp continued in July, while the diamond capital’s polished trade showed signs of life among persistently soft results. According to figures published by the AWDC, on a year-over-year basis, the volume of rough diamond exports increased significantly (20%) for the third month in a row (+55% May, +53% June), totaling nearly 11 million carats, while their value actually declined by 4% to $1.1 billion. The volume of rough imports also increased 15% while their value tumbled by 14%.
The Women’s Jewelry Association’s mission is to help women in the diamond, jewelry and watch industries advance and develop professionally through networking, education, leadership and the provision of member services. Programs include grants, interactive workshops, mentorship programs and awards of excellence. The Diamond Loupe had the opportunity to sit down with Ayelet Lerner, one of the women involved with setting up the WJA chapter in Antwerp.
The Diamond Loupe: Tell us a little bit about yourself in the business.
Last week, a leading diamond grading and certification lab HRD Antwerp detected two large topaz stones fashioned to imitate rough diamonds in an apparent attempt to fool a trader. "Two large, near-colourless rough stones weighing 50.08 and 38.18 ct were submitted to our research department to determine their quality," HRD's statement reads. "The results indicated that the gemstones, believed to be diamonds, were actually topaz.
Innovation is the key to sustained success, even for a traditional industry such as the diamond trade. Successful innovation, however, starts with questioning what we do and why we are doing it.
Antwerp's diamond trade in June mirrors the trends we have seen from the diamond capital over the first half of the year 2017, with significant volume increases of lower-priced rough exports and a persistently soft polished trade. On a year-over-year basis, the volume of rough diamond exports increased for the second month in a row by more than 50% (53%) while their value rose only 24%. The volume of rough imports also surged 31% while their value lagged behind at 5%.
Mountain Province Diamonds' fifth diamond sale of diamonds from the Gahcho Kué mine in Canada was its best to date, setting new highs in overall revenue, carats sold and price per carat. The junior miner sold 220,000 carats at its June tender in Antwerp, earning $2.1 million for an average price of $95 per carat, a solid increase from the $72 and $86 per carat earned respectively in sales 1-3 and 4.
Dominion Diamond Corporation has announced an auction of fancy rough diamonds in cooperation with I. Hennig Tenders. The auction viewings will take place in Israel, New York, and Antwerp. The auction will commence with viewings in Israel from June 18-21, 2017; New York from June 26-28, 2017; and will conclude in Antwerp from July 3-7, 2017. Participation in the viewings and the auction is by appointment only.
Arriving at Antwerp’s splendid 19th century Central Station, with its marble staircases, iron and glass vaulted ceiling and gilded details, shoppers visiting Antwerp are filled with high expectations about the jewelry boutiques awaiting them in the world’s diamond capital. For years these expectations were quickly dashed, as consumers were confronted with myriad uninviting and less-than-reputable jewelry shops once they left the station. Where to turn?
Antwerp's diamond trade bounced back in May after a modest month of April, with significant increases across the board compared to the month prior. On a year-over-year basis, the volume of rough diamond exports increased by more than 55% although their value fell by 3%, while rough imports increased more than 13% in volume while declining 18% in value. Value increases were recorded for imports as well as exports of polished goods, while the volume of imports increased nearly 5% and the volume of exports were down 12%.
Mountain Province Diamonds, a 49% participant with De Beers Canada in the Gahcho Kué diamond mine located in Canada’s Northwest Territories, has unearthed the largest stone thus far produced by the mine: an 84.65 carat gem quality diamond. It also announced the recovery of a 53.90 carat gem quality diamond. The joint venture partners bid for the production of fancy coloured and special (+10.8 carat) diamonds on almost a monthly basis.
Canadian junior miner Diamcor Mining Inc. yesterday announced the recovery a 5.36 carat green gem quality octahedron rough diamond from the newly expanded facilities at the company’s Krone-Endora at Venetia Project in South Africa.
Sierra Leone's government announced yesterday (May 11) that it would seek higher offers in Antwerp for a massive 709-carat diamond after receiving underwhelming offers at auction in Freetown. British citizen Ziad al-Ahmadi, based in Antwerp and reportedly working for Raydiam BVBA, placed the $7.7 million bid which failed to match the government's unspecified reserve price, and turned out to be far lower than the $50 million the Sierra Leone government had originally hoped for, prompting the decision to try again in Belgium.
In October Firestone Diamonds announced the recovery of its first diamond from the Liqhobong Diamond Mine in Lesotho since the the re-commissioning of the new plant. Liqhobong is owned 75% by Firestone and 25% by the Government of Lesotho. Firestone has been ramping up production since then, and will hold its third tender in Antwerp as planned.
The sixth edition of the unique "Rough Diamond Days" got underway yesterday (May 10) at the Rough Diamond Bourse (Antwerpsche Diamantkring) in Antwerp, and the traders on the floor are clearly enthusiastic about the format. The event creates a forum for Antwerp-based rough traders - approximately 45 at this edition - to showcase their goods to local and international buyers on an open trade floor, the way it used to be done, and is the only one of its kind.
The first edition of CARAT+, the new diamond and diamond-jewelry exclusive trade show in Antwerp, concluded its final day of trading on a positive note, the organizers announce. Official data indicates that over the three-day period, CARAT+ recorded 2,927 visitors from 29 different countries; they were welcomed by 116 exhibitors from 14 countries. The organizers have already set a date for the second edition: 6 + 7 + 8 May 2018.
Antwerp's diamond trade experienced modest and mixed results in April: the volume of rough diamond exports stayed flat for the month while rough imports were down mainly as a result of De Beers not holding a sight in April. Volume declines were also recorded for imports as well as exports of polished goods, in part due to the spring holiday season around the world, though the average value of imports outweighed the fall in volume and ended up slightly on a year-over-year basis.
Koin International will hold its May rough sales of African diamonds in Antwerp from 8 - 17 May. The tender includes exciting selections of original mine rough productions, including diamonds from Ekapa Minerals (selection of tailings from Kimberley, South Africa), Angola F2M (10.80ct.+ and melee to 4ct. parcels), Diamcor Mining (original run of mine from Krone-Endora mine, South Africa, singles through to melee parcels), Democratic Republic of Congo (Run of Mine) and Guiter Minerals Sarl (Guinea Run of Mine).