On 27 March, HB Antwerp officially opened the doors of HB Botswana, the company’s first branch outside Antwerp. During the inauguration ceremony, H.E. Dr. Mokgweetsi E.K. Masisi, President of Botswana, announced a strategic partnership between the Government of Botswana and HB Antwerp whereby the Government will invest in HB by acquiring a 24% equity stake in HB Antwerp.
The opening of HB Botswana fulfills the company’s promise to bring its cutting-edge, proprietary technologies to Botswana, supporting the country's transformation into a diamond knowledge center. Located at the Diamond Technology Park in Gaborone, the facility is closely modelled on its Antwerp operations.
“We are forging a brighter future for the next generation of Botswana, taking unprecedented ownership over our natural resources to realize their potential for our nation’s sustainable development fully,” President Masisi stated in his inaugural speech.
During the inauguration, HB also announced it will open a significantly larger, more advanced facility at the Botswana Innovation Hub, scaling the company’s impact by as much as ten times. The Hub is constructed with cutting-edge green technology available and houses a wide range of initiatives in technology incubation, education, and scientific research. In addition to this strategic partnership, Masisi added that the Government of Botswana, through its rough diamond trading company, Okavango Diamond Company (ODC), will supply rough diamonds to HB Botswana, HB Antwerp’s local subsidiary, for five years, with all the value-add to take place in Botswana.
“Today is the dawn of a new era in Botswana’s diamond story as we begin this journey with HB Antwerp. This partnership has the potential to be a game-changer,” said Masisi.
Source: HB Atnwerp