Archive

  • Every marketeer has spent countless hours strategizing on how to target millennials, which has led them to neglect an important audience: introducing the Midult. Paula De Luca, creative director of trend forecasting company Trendvision, defines the midult as a women between the ages of 35 and 55 who has spending power – in other words, a Generation X female, born between 1960 and 1980. Following millennials and baby boomers, Gen X is the third largest generation in America, making up 25% of the 60 million adults in the U.S. 

  • At the 2017 Geneva motor show Rolls-Royce will be presenting its most brilliant car to date. The Rolls-Royce Ghost Elegance is mechanically identical to the Ghost, the only difference being the paint which includes a powder originating from 1,000 ethically-sourced diamonds. 

    The price of the exclusive Rolls-Royce was not announced, however it will likely be a tad over the US$274,050 (£223,368) base price for a Ghost.

  • De Beers' International Institute of Diamond Grading & Research (IIDGR) will showcase its PhosView™ screening instrument in the UK for the first time at the UK Jewellery Conference at the East Midlands Conference Centre on October 3-4 2016. The PhosView™ was launched at the Hong Kong Gem & Jewellery Fair from September 14 to 18. Demand for the technology has been "particularly strong in the first two weeks it has been available to purchase," De Beers said in a statement.

  • Auctioneer Bonhams has sold a rare oval-cut blue diamond weighing 3.81 carats for £2,322,500 ($3 million, or $792,450 per carat). The Fancy Intense blue diamond comes from a private British collection. Jean Ghika, Head of Jewellery for Bonhams UK & Europe, said: “Blue diamonds account for only 0.004% of all diamonds mined and are therefore exceptionally rare and remain highly sought after. The price achieved in today’s auction demonstrates that the global appetite for colored diamonds remains as buoyant as ever.”

  • International Jewellery London (IJL) took place from September 4 to 6 2016 at Olympia GRAND London against the background of a tough economic outlook in the United Kingdom following the Brexit vote. However, exhibitors spoke of buyers from all over the world turning out in force at the annual trade show. The strong decline of the pound following the Brexit vote in June has made British exports much more attractive, with retailers in London providing evidence of a surge in foreign spending. The show featured 500 exhibitors from 33 countries.

  • Rio Tinto has appointed UK luxury jeweler, Boodles, as a Select Atelier for Argyle Pink Diamonds. Josephine Johnson, manager of Argyle Pink Diamonds said, "Boodles are an exciting British fine jeweler with over two centuries of heritage, who continue to deliver contemporary and beautifully crafted designs with the finest of fancy colored diamonds. We are delighted to welcome them as an Argyle Pink Diamonds Select Atelier.” Boodles joins a group of master craftsman and luxury jewelers selected to create jewelry set with Argyle pink diamonds.

  • A pair of Kashmir sapphires and a rare blue diamond are set to be the highlights of a Bonhams London sale as it starts the fall auction season with its Fine Jewellery auction on September 20. Headlining the sale is a oval-cut blue diamond weighing 3.81 carats. The Fancy Intense Blue diamond is accompanied by a GIA report and hails from a private British collection. Jean Ghika, Head of Jewellery for Bonhams UK & Europe, says: “Blue diamonds are extraordinarily rare and account for only 0.004% of all diamonds mined.

  • Signet Jewelers Limited, the world's largest retailer of diamond jewelry, reported lower same-store sales and revenues for the second quarter of fiscal year 2017 ended July 30. Same store sales were down 2.3% on the same quarter last year, while total sales fell 2.6% to $1.4 billion. Total sales at constant exchange rates were down 1.3%. Annual financial guidance was revised downward based on current trends.

  • Despite the fears that the UK economy would tank following the vote in June to leave the European Union, figures from the Office for National Statistics showed that jewelry and watch retailers saw a 17% jump in sales in July. Retail sales generally surged by almost 6% on July last year, and are up 1.4% since June, Professional Jeweller reported. However, the jump in sales is likely due to good weather coupled and tourists taking advantage of the weak pound to visit and shop in Britain.

  • US aerospace company Lockheed Martin has filed a patent for a new kind of 3D printer. The patent, filed on April 4 by inventor David G. Findley, describes a new way of 3D printing which would use a pre-ceramic polymer and nanoparticle filler to create synthetic diamond objects of just about any shape, says a report in www.3dprintingindustry.com. The main aim of the printer will most likely be to make drill bits, sharp objects and possibly lightweight armor, but will also give jewelry makers untold design possibilities.

  • Stellar Diamonds suspended its share trading on London's AIM on Friday due to a possible reverse takeover transaction. The London-listed diamond developer said the deal would require the publication of an admission document and be subject to shareholder approval. It also stressed that there is no guarantee that the potential transaction will be completed. As a result, trading in the company’s shares on AIM were suspended until either an admission document is published or the company announces that the potential transaction will no longer be proceeding.

  • Almost two months after the British electorate's decision to leave the EU and with the financial effect still unclear, Retail Jeweller magazine is surveying its readers to uncover how UK jewelers are being impacted by the Brexit vote. The survey aims to also find out what the jewelry industry believes being outside the EU might hold for them. Results of the survey will be published in the November issue of Retail Jeweller together with comment and analysis.

  • The London Diamond Bourse (LDB) will hold an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) to discuss the issue of leases in the historic Hatton Garden diamond area that are set to skyrocket. Leases will rise due to the opening soon of a station in nearby Farringdon of the Crossrail system which will vastly improve access and train times to the area.

  • Lucara Diamond CEO William Lamb says the firm would not rule out offering exceptional diamonds at auction again in the future despite failing to sell the biggest diamond found in more than a century at Sotheby's in June. “We’re not discounting going back to the auction process in some form in the future,” Lamb told Bloomberg TV Canada in an interview.

  • In a lengthy article in Vanity Fair, writer Paul Hart gives what he claims to be the inside story regarding the offering for sale at Sotheby's in London in June of the 1,109-carat tennis ball-size Lesedi La Rona diamond and how the diamond fell far, far short of the owners' confident predictions. By selling straight to an end buyer, Lucara could have all the proceeds for itself. However, the big global players apparently did not want to "expose" themselves to the full glare of media publicity in bidding for the giant gem.

  • Throwing away old furniture? It's worth checking carefully as you never know what you might find, according to a story from the UK where a couple bought a dusty old chair for just £5 at an auction – and years later discovered diamond jewelry worth £5,000 ($6,600) hidden inside it. The couple bought the chair around 10 years ago, but could not afford to have it reupholstered at the time and instead kept it in their attic for six years.

  • Despite all the talk of the millennial generation and younger people being overwhelmingly digitally connected, a new study in the UK emphasizes the ongoing importance of physical stores in driving retail sales. Of the £313 billion ($410 billion) spent by UK consumers in 2015, £278 billion (89%) “touched” a store through physical sales, click & collect and online sales browsed in store, according to research firm Verdict Retail and British Land.

  • The largest diamond found in more than a century has been put on display at Sotheby's Bond Street headquarters in London ahead of it going under the hammer on June 29. The tennis ball size Lesedi la Rona, which weighs in at 1,109 carats and was found at Lucara Diamond Corp's Karowe mine in Botswana last November, is expected to sell for around $70 million. Reports suggest that the Lesedi la Rona, which translates as 'our light' in the Tswana language, has the potential to produce the largest top-quality diamond that has ever been cut and polished.

  • Five men who used Monopoly money to trick jewelers in a scam worth £7 million (around $10 million) have been sentenced to jail terms ranging from two to seven years in the United Kingdom. The men were found to have placed fake notes from the famous board game between real bank notes. The biggest loser was jeweler John Calleija who has a shop in the Royal Arcade on Old Bond Street in London who lost £6.1 million (approximately $8.5 million).

  • As De Beers prepares to move 300 employees from its historic offices at Charterhouse Street in London to a different site in the British capital to save money and allow it to sell off the buildings, could parent company Anglo American be planning a similar move in Johannesburg. Anglo owns four large buildings in Johannesburg, including the iconic 44 Main Street, the walls of which are covered with tapestries and Georgian etchings, reports miningmx.com. Pranill Ramchander, spokesman for the firm in Johannesburg, said: “Everything is up for consideration; we would consider it,”

  • Luxury end diamonds are taking a hit from lower demand globally, with Graff Diamonds reporting a drop in sales and profits last year as tougher market conditions in the worldwide gem industry hit the high-end jeweler. Revenue plunged 32 percent to $500 million, while profit dropped 74 percent to $32 million in 2015, Graff Diamonds said in a filing to the UK’s Companies House, a registrar for businesses, Rapaport reported. Revenue from countries outside the U.K., where the company is based, dropped 34 percent to $464.1 million, while U.K. sales rose 11 percent to $36.1 million.

  • A series of diamond rings worth £225,000 ($325,000) has been created to honor English soccer champions Leicester City and its historic Premier League win this season. The rings were made by a Leicester-based jeweler and are set with a 5.01-carat central diamond set in a yellow gold crown - mimicking the Premier League trophy - flanked by blue sapphires. The rings also feature two gold lions facing each other on the silver band, another reference to the league trophy.

  • SBS Insurance Services has collaborated with Birmingham City University’s Jewellery Industry Innovation Centre, Cooksongold, and The Assay Office Birmingham to successfully replace a range of bespoke items through the use of 3D printing technology in what is claimed to be the world’s first 3D printed jewelry insurance claim service. Results from the first trials of show that SBS Insurance Services is able to replace items faster and cheaper, with savings of 30-50% compared with High Street prices, according to a report by Professional Jeweller.

  • The ring, created by jeweler Hancocks in upscale Mayfair in London, is set with two 20-carat diamonds and coils around the finger with the ends of the band passing each other on top. The ring, which Hancocks has given a specially-designated security guard, has a price tag of £1.6 million (around $2.1 million).

  • Signet Jewelers Limited reported that same store sales increased 4.1% in its fiscal 2016 year ended January 30, 2016, while annual total sales of $6.55 billion showed an increase on the year of 14.2%. Fourth quarter same store sales increased by 4.9% the world's largest retailer of diamond jewelry reported in its results for the 2016 fiscal fourth quarter and fiscal 2016 year.

  • Heritage FA Limited, which marketed and sold colored diamonds and other commodities to the public for investment, has been officially ordered into liquidation. An investigation found that vulnerable and elderly individuals were being targeted and aggressively sold investments in fancy colored diamonds and rough diamonds, as well as gold, fine art and oil wells. It was discovered that at least £7 million (around $10 million) was raised from investors generating commission of over £2.5 million (about $3.5 million) before the company was forcibly closed.

  • A court in London has handed down sentences to the remaining men involved in the approximate $20 million Hatton Garden burglary carried out last April. Three men had previously been convicted of involvement in the heist, while four more pleaded guilty last September to conspiracy to commit burglary. Three of them were sentenced to seven years in jail, while the fourth will be sentenced later as he was unwell and unable to attend court.

  • Global jewelry giant Pandora combined social media app Snapchat with Mother’s Day in Britain to boost awareness and promote its products. Pandora asked mothers and daughters to take pictures of themselves together and to add a Pandora geofilter which was a branded Mothering Sunday message. The brand also offered users a chance to win £500 to be spent in Pandora’s flagship store in the U.K. by asking fans to share their favorite selfie with the Pandora geofilter on Twitter. Pandora has been using Snapchat to expand its user base, according to a report in Professional Jeweller.

  • The significance of the announcement of the entry of the latest diamond grading lab to the industry, De Beers' International Institute of Diamond Grading & Research (IIDGR), is discussed by JCK's Rob Bates. The IIDGR previously mostly issued reports for De Beers’ Forevermark brand diamonds. The uniqueness of the new lab different is that it relies heavily on technology for grading, De Beers spokesperson David Johnson tells Bates. It uses automated devices for all color grading from VS to I3, and is used as a “grader aider” for higher grades, Johnson explained.

  • Mining giant Anglo American, which owns 85% of De Beers, may sell the diamond miner's historic London headquarters, thus firmly bringing about the end of an era for the world’s largest diamond mining company, GemKonnect reported. De Beers’ huge complex in Charterhouse Street, close to the Hatton Garden diamond district, could be added to the assets for sale by Anglo American which last week published a wide scale break-up of the mining giant after reporting the biggest loss in its 99-year history. De Beers' London property could raise around $180 million.

  • Signet Jewelers Limited, the world's largest retailer of diamond jewelry, is delisting its common shares from the London Stock Exchange, meaning it can only be traded on the New York Stock Exchange. Signet said it is taking the action because less than 1% of its annual trading volume is executed on the LSE. As a result, the benefit of LSE listing is outweighed by the cost, regulatory burdens, and time spent on LSE-driven activity. Shares will continue to be traded on the LSE until March 11, with cancelation taking effect on March 14.

  • The vast majority of British jewelry buyers want to receive an independent grading report when buying a diamond, yet only 42% actually receive one, according to a study by De Beers' International Institute of Diamond Grading & Research. The study into attitudes towards diamond grading reports in the UK market reveals a huge “gulf” between what customers want and market reality. Most respondents said they strongly believed that grading reports raise confidence in a sale and the value of the diamond, however only around half of those that wanted one when buying a diamond received it.

  • The British jewelry and watch sector loses around $156 million (£108 million) every year as a result of counterfeit goods being shipped into the market, new EU figures show. Overall in the EU, the manufacture of counterfeit jewelry, watches, handbags and luggage costs businesses €3.5 billion ($3.95 billion) a year.

  • The Gemmological Association of Great Britain (Gem-A) is looking for a new chief executive. The current interim CEO, Nick Jones, was taken on by the Gem-A council last October to steer the organization through the fourth quarter and to guide the recruitment process for a permanent chief executive the departure of James Riley, who was suspended in June 2015.

  • The London Diamond Bourse (LDB) has partnered with a government agency, the Insolvency Service, to deal with the issue of companies claiming to offer diamonds as an investment. The London bourse has published a document on the public area of its website to help the public avoid falling foul of “boiler room” scams purporting to sell highly lucrative investment diamonds. The consumer advice was developed by the exchange and the Insolvency Service with former chief executive officer of the British Jewellers Association, Simon Rainer, consulting for the project.

  • Six vintage covers of Playboy magazine from 1967 to 1982 have been embellished with diamond dust for a new exhibition. Artist Simon Claridge from Edinburgh  made his name producing sepia silkscreen portraits of popular icons including Marilyn Monroe and Twiggy finished with a form of glitter derived from diamonds, the Daily Mail reports. Now he has given the Playboy bunnies a similarly sparkly treatment for a new exhibition opening at the Playboy Club in London's Mayfair on 15 January.

  • British police are offering a reward for information after admitting they have no clues as to the identity of 'Basil', the mystery redhead who is thought to have escaped with the proceeds of the Hatton Garden raid estimated at £10 million ($14.5 million). Police are appealing for the public’s help to find the unknown thief – dubbed Basil and thought to have been the gang’s ‘inside man’ on the record breaking job – as three of his accomplices were convicted of their role in the Hatton Garden heist. They will be sentenced in March.

  • Total jewelry and watches sales in Britain rose at their fastest rate in five months during the five-week period from November 29 to January 2, according to the latest British Retail Consortium Retail Sales Monitor report. Jewelry and watches were placed 4th in the total sales sector performance rankings table, with the result being even more impressive given the tough comparisons set by strong December sales growth in 2014. Overall U.K. retail sales rose by just 0.1% across all categories (food and non-food) on a like-for-like basis from December 2014 the report added.

  • Prices for fancy colored diamonds, especially blue diamonds, continue to climb. Just 30% of all mined diamonds are gem-quality and only 0.04% of diamonds mined are blue "and finding them is random. As a result of their incredible rarity and scarcity, they are fetching record prices," said auctions house, Bonhams London, Department Director Emily Barber. The auctioneer said it made jewelry auction history in 2015, setting four new world records in its New Bond Street salesroom.

  • Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has decided not to take action against HSBC, Britain's largest bank, whose Swiss arm helped clients to evade tax. HSBC was hit by a scandal last year when leaked bank account details showed how its Swiss unit helped wealthy customers to evade taxes by concealing assets and handing out cash to avoid the authorities. HSBC’s private banking clients, which also featured 2,000 diamond industry names, held more than $100 billion.