HRD Antwerp - Diamond High Council grading and certification lab has announced it will keep its diamond labs open and functioning at 50% of their capacity. All educational courses have been suspended. The announcement came in a letter from CEO Ellen Joncheere to HRD Antwerp's clients and students.
The grading & certification lab HRD Antwerp is gearing up for a major restructuring with a fresh vision on the future. Its parent company, the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC), has approved the revitalization strategy proposed by HRD’s new CEO Ellen Joncheere, who was hired a month ago to turn the company around and appears ready to take the bull by the horns. “HRD Antwerp urgently needs to adapt to a changing environment if it is going to grow," she says.
Until now, De Beers' laboratory-grown diamond jewelry brand Lightbox has issued no grading reports about its diamonds, enabling it to keep its pricing is straightforward ($800 a carat, $400 for a half carat, $200 for a quarter carat). De Beers says it approach the product in this way because man-made stones are mass-produced and do not deserve the individual attention that mined diamonds get.
De Beers Group Industry Services has announced a new collaboration with leading US wholesaler, RDI Diamonds Inc., to become its premier source of diamond grading reports, the company stated in a press release. It will be the first time De Beers has provided grading services in the US.
"Effective immediately, GIA [Gemological Institute of America] will suspend diamond sealing services," the organization said in press release last Friday. The statement continues, "The Institute is taking this action after recently encountering a small number of GIA sealing packets that had been compromised by third parties after the sealing packets left GIA." The organization discovered "that the diamonds originally enclosed in the compromised packets had been replaced with HPHT (high-pressure, high-temperature) treated natural diamonds."
The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) has added a third ad that will run on Times Square running up to Valentine's Day, promoting their Diamond Origin Report. Launched in 2019, the GIA Diamond Origin Report uses scientific evaluation to match a polished diamond to its original rough, providing confirmation of the origin information provided by the diamond mining company and including information that helps consumers understand the positive social and economic impact that mined diamonds have for the countries and communities that produce them.
The diamond grading and certification lab HRD Antwerp has appointed a new CEO, Ellen Joncheere. HRD Antwerp has been in the business of grading and certifying polished diamonds since 1973, delivering some 130,000 polished-diamond certificates annually. It also offers diamond-related training and education programs, in Belgium and internationally, as well as developing and marketing technological devices such as microscopes, detection and screening equipment.
The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) is set to close its operations in Dubai. According to sources, the GIA is making the move to ensure they use their resources as effectively as possible to fulfil their consumer protection mission, and will close its Dubai office by the end of the year. The renowned diamond grading and certification lab most recently started operations at a new facility in Antwerp.
De Beers has renamed its International Institute of Diamond Grading & Research (IIDGR); it will henceforth be known as De Beers Group Industry Services (DBGIS). Based in London Maidenhead), Antwerp and Surat, DBGIS offers diamond grading, testing to verify diamonds and identify synthetics and simulants, detection instruments developed by De Beers Group Technology and education services provided by De Beers Group Institute of Diamonds. The services thus remain the same as before.
HRD Antwerp today announced its expansion into the UK market with the opening of a new drop-off point in London’s Hatton Garden, giving UK jewelers easy access to HRD Antwerp’s services, such as jewelry and diamond grading reports and testing for synthetics.
It is a joint decision of the profession and the French Union of Jewellery not to grade synthetic diamonds, unlike other international laboratories. These stones do not have to be evaluated on the same scale as natural ones, because they are an imitation of the diamond and must remain so. This decision is unanimous in the profession except for those who want to promote this [lab-grown] material. But it must be remembered that the increase of synthetic diamonds on the market will bring down their price.
Dutch Diamond Technologies (DD) has created the world’s first ring that is entirely made from a lab-grown diamond. ‘Project D’, DD’s name for the ring, took a year to manufacture and was created in honour of the company’s 10th anniversary. For grading this unique piece of jewelry, DD turned to HRD Antwerp, Europe’s leading authority in diamond grading, writes the grading lab in a press release.
HRD Antwerp, a European leading authority in diamond certification, has entered a partnership with Dubai-based jewellery retailer Stargems Group to certify their entire jewelry inventory through the establishment of a diamond jewelry grading lab. This cooperation will ultimately ensure the transparency and authenticity of each jewelry piece, HRD Antwerp announced today in a statement.
Stephane Fischler, President of the World Diamond Council, spoke with Mines to Market. Some key takeaways [for the complete interview, click 'Read the full article']:
MtM: What is your idea of the ideal environment for the diamond industry to evolve in today’s scenario?
Fischler: The ideal scenario for the diamond industry, as for any industry, is a combination of positive tension on the 'supply and demand' side and growing consumer desire for the product. That is the theory.
HRD Antwerp, a leading European authority in diamond certification, recently undertook a study entitled “The Effect of Fluorescence on the Colour of a Diamond”, concluding that even strong fluorescence does not negatively impact a diamond’s appearance. In fact, their findings demonstrate the contrary: under normal conditions and even when outdoors, strong fluorescence has a positive influence on the color of diamonds. This finding directly contradicts the common perception that fluorescence is a negative property of diamonds, driving down their value.
Fosun International, through its holding company Yuyuan Shares, has announced that it plans to invest US$108.8 million to acquire an 80% stake in the diamond, gemstones and jewelry certification and appraisal lab, the International Gemological Institute (IGI). Headquartered in Antwerp, Belgium, IGI is a world-renowned gemological training and diamond appraisal organization, known to be the world's largest independent gem certification and appraisal institute for diamonds, colored gemstones, and jewelry.
In the context of the KP Intersessional taking place this week, which has brought the diamond world to Antwerp, the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation, represented by the Deputy Minister of Finance of the Russian Federation Aleksey Vladimirovich Moiseev, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with HRD Antwerp for the establishment of an HRD Antwerp diamond grading lab in Moscow.
Sarine Technologies, which provides high-tech equipment and services to the diamond industry, announced yesterday that it is opening its second Sarine Technology Laboratory in Mumbai, India, as scheduled, which will offer services to the key Indian polishing centre, commencing immediately. The Laboratory, one of the leaders in the development, manufacture and sale of precision technology products for the evaluation, planning, processing, finishing, grading and trading of diamonds and gems, offers reports on a broad range of a polished diamond's parameters.
The world's most recognized diamond grading institution, GIA (Gemological Institute of America) is launching a pilot program together with leading jewerly retailer, Chow Tai Fook which will use blockchain technology to deliver secure, digital diamond grading reports to consumers for the first time.
HRD Antwerp, one of Europe's leading diamond grading labs, last week opened its new office in the Bharat Diamond Bourse (BDB), as well as a jewelry grading lab in the Santacruz Electronics Export Processing Zone (SEEPZ) in Mumbai, established for manufacturers exporting to international locations. The new office was inaugurated last week by Belgium’s Consul-General, Mr. Peter Huyghebaert, in the presence of HRD CEO Mr. Michael Janssens, BDB President Mr. Anoop Mehta, Vice President Mr. Mehul Shah and other dignitaries. In his opening speech, Mr.
HRD Antwerp announced the opening of a jewelry grading lab in the Santacruz Electronics Export Processing Zone (SEEPZ) in Mumbai, for manufacturers who export to various international locations. “Our customers will have safe, reliable and easy access to our services. Our laboratory has the know-how and tools to thoroughly analyze jewelry, provide a general description of the jewel, the quality of the diamonds it contains, and the precious metals of which it is made”, explains Ravi Chhabria, Managing Director of HRD Antwerp India.
Sarine Technologies Ltd, one of the leading diamond industry technology developers, announced significant declines in its financial figures in 2017, with total profits falling 68% to US$5.76 million and revenues down by 19% to US$58.6 million.
Israeli diamond tech group Sarine Technologies is opening its first gemological laboratory this February in Ramat Gan, Israel, with plans to follow with the opening of a lab in India, planned for May. The company says it will utilize its, "breakthrough artificial-intelligence based technological solutions for the automated, accurate, consistent, digital, and objective grading of a polished diamond's Clarity and Colour." The services offered will include authentication whether a polished diamond is a simulant, natural or synthetic, treated or not, as well as the grading of its 4Cs.
World-renowned diamond grading lab GIA has announced it will open a new laboratory in Surat, India and expand its long-term presence in Antwerp, Belgium in the second quarter of 2018 to meet the needs of the global gem and jewelry industry. GIA says it has already secured premises for both locations. In Antwerp, GIA will be occupying space in the Antwerp Diamond Bourse.
Next week, on October 26, HRD Antwerp is planning to launch a brand new product that it says will be a revolutionary concept on the diamond grading landscape, the HRD Antwerp diamond ID Card for diamonds smaller than 1 carat. While the details have yet to be released, HRD Antwerp says their new product will help keep the European gemological lab at the cutting edge of diamond grading technology.
On September 19, GIA (Gemological Institute of America) President and CEO Susan Jacques announced the opening of GIA’s Tokyo campus at a ceremony attended by several industry leaders. Beginning in November, the new GIA campus in Tokyo will offer the Diamond Essentials Intensive and Diamond Grading Lab classes in Japanese.
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.
On Monday June 12, the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) welcomed eight participants for a two-week course in rough diamond valuation: the "KP Technical Assistance Valuation Program". The course originates from the commitment of the Diamond Development Initiative (DDI), which coordinates requests for Technical Assistance on behalf of the Administrative Support Mechanism (ASM) in the framework of the KP. The participants work for KP authorities in four countries: Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia.
The International Gemological Institute (IGI) will unveil two new organizations at a jewelry workshop in Italy this week on the technical and commercial impact of synthetic diamonds on the jewelry industry. Firstly, the IGI Italy Association, which will represent the Antwerp-based laboratory’s operations in Italy, combines the five territorial districts involved in implementing IGI’s School of Gemology programs in Italy. Secondly, the IGI Italy Alumni Association will also be introduced at the workshop.
The International Institute of Diamond Grading & Research (IIDGR), a De Beers Group company, has entered a partnership with one of Japan’s leading bridal jewelry retailers, I-PRIMO, to provide polished diamond grading reports. The reports will provide assurance to I-PRIMO customers that their diamonds meet the retailer’s strict quality standards, writes De Beers in a press release. I-PRIMO only uses loose diamonds that have been graded as ‘excellent’ for engagement rings and all melee diamonds must meet ‘Heart & Cupid’ grading standards.
The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) launched a new service which tracks the origin of a selection of polished diamonds, which offers retailers a new method of being able to uncover a stone’s history. Since the project is only two years in development, GIA's M2M™ (Mine to Market) program is restricted and is not yet able to provide a complete solution to determining a diamond’s provenance. “If you just gave me any polished diamond, I can’t tell you what mine it came from,” says Matt Crimmin, GIA’s vice president of laboratory operations.
The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) has made an alarming discovery, namely, a natural white diamond covered by a thin (80 microns, or 0.003 inches) synthetic layer that colors it blue – and has warned that more such composites might be on the market. The 0.33-carat stone is a composite of CVD synthetic Type IIb diamond overgrowth on a natural Type Ia diamond.
HRD Antwerp officially inaugurated its new lab & office premises in Mumbai on Tuesday April 25, joined by Belgium's Secretary of State for Foreign Trade Pieter De Crem. This expansion underscores HRD Antwerp's commitment to fundamentally strengthening the ties between the world's leading diamond trading center – Antwerp – and the Bharat Diamond Bourse - the world's largest diamond bourse. “HRD Antwerp started its activities in India back in 2012, to provide faster and more convenient service to Indian diamond companies”, explains Ravi Chhabria, Managing Director of HRD Antwerp India.
The International Institute of Diamond Grading & Research (IIDGR), part of the De Beers Group, announced a polished diamond grading service partnership with Hong Kong-based jeweler Lukfook. The first partnership with a vertically-integrated Sightholder.
Sarin India, the Indian subsidiary of diamond processing equipment maker and services provider Sarine Technologies, has consolidated its Surat operations in a brand new, wholly-owned, hi-tech facility, the “Sarin House”. The new facility covers 55,000 square feet (5,100 sq.m.) over six floors, housing approximately 400 staff members.
The International Institute of Diamond Grading & Research (IIDGR), part of The De Beers Group of Companies, announced its first retail partnership in Asia for its generic polished diamond grading services. The partnership is with the Soo Kee Group in Singapore, which formally launches in February for the retailer’s bridal brand, Love & Co., for its Lovemarque diamond collection.
The International Institute of Diamond Grading & Research (IIDGR), part of The De Beers Group of Companies, has appointed independent digital agency Ridgeway to produce a new online education experience to share and disseminate the company’s industry knowledge to interested parties, reports Professional Jeweler. Ridgeway will develop an e-learning hub to provide educational courses on various topics. The plans will be unveiled at a launch event in April 2017, with the intention to have 1,000 students by the middle of 2018.
The American Gem Society Laboratories (AGS Laboratories) announced the release of a new service offering - "Only My Diamond" - that allows suppliers and retailers to present the diamond to their customers by "bringing the grading report to life", and providing complete details on the 4Cs, with visual and descriptive explanations of the diamond characteristics. The service is an interactive online tool on AGSLab.com, providing an enhancement to AGS Laboratories' Diamond Quality Document (DQD) by offering supplementary diamond quality information.
Avi Krawitz of Rapaport News details a decision by the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) to enforce a new rule compelling a dealer to cancel the sale of a rough diamond after he failed to disclose that a stone underwent value analysis using a Sarine Galaxy machine. Krawitz has been informed it is the first ever enforcement of new guidelines the World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) adopted in May aiming to keep a level playing field between both parties trading rough diamonds.
HRD Antwerp, the Antwerp based grading lab, officially opened a first Centre of Excellence in Shanghai, a concept that combines the strenghts of the grading lab and select retailers across the globe, aimed at increasing consumer confidence and knowledge by offering a true in-store experience.