"For the first time since 2011, 2018 saw the Israeli diamond trade stabilize," writes The Israeli Diamond Industry, bringing to an end what the President of the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE), Yoram Dvash calls “a few years of crisis." According to the Diamonds, Gemstones and Jewelry Administration in the Ministry of Economy, exports of polished diamonds fell by only 2.5% percent to approximately $4.5 billion, representing an improvement over sharper declines in recent years, while polished imports reached $3.0 billion, an improvement of 4.1% over last year.
The Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) has appointed Eran Zini as its new Managing Director. After having served as senior advisor to Israel’s Minister of Justice, he joined Israeli pioneering electric car start-up Better Place, as head of government relations and regulation. He then joined a government company devoted to vocational rehabilitation for people with disabilities as head of operations, and a year later was promoted to Managing Director, a position he held until he was recruited by IDE.
Zini fills the vacancy left behind by Eli Avidar, who stepped down in April.
Carats.io, an Israeli blockchain startup in partnership with the Israel Diamond Exchange, has raised $1.6 million in its first funding round led by Net Capital Ventures, an Israeli venture capital fund, the organization stated in a press release. Carats.io says it is issuing the first digital coin backed by diamonds. The coin, CARAT, which is 100% redeemable for diamonds is currently in presale. The company reports that they are registering large subscriptions for the token through the company website.
The Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) launched the International Tender Center (ITC) in February last year to attract major diamond producers and trading companies to the market and make goods available to bourse members. According to the organization, the ITC "has succeeded beyond expectations during its first year of activity." So much so, the bourse has announced that the center will be expanded later this year to encompass a venue for live auctions.
Israel's diamond trade decined in terms of the volume and value traded for the third straight year, according to Israel's Ministry of Economy and Industry as reported by Rapaport News. The industry's polished exports fell 4% on the year to just under $4.5 billion, while volume of polished exports fell 6% to 1.7 million carats. Rapaport further notes that exports to the US, the largest market for the Israeli diamonds, declined 7% to $1.69 billion, while shipments to Belgium bounced back, surging 20% to $420 million.
According to Rapaport News, based on figures from the Ministry of Economy and Industry, Israel's diamond trade as a whole has slowed in 2017, as exports of polished diamonds to the US, Israel’s largest market, declined 15% to $1.26 billion during the nine-month period. Exports to Hong Kong are also down, but only by 3% to $1.01 billion. Rapaport writes: "The country’s exports of polished diamonds fell 12% year on year to $3.38 billion during the first nine months of 2017, while the volume of goods sent out dropped 11% to 1.297 million carats.
Representatives of Israel's diamond industry want ALROSA to increase supplies of rough and polished diamonds through its tenders in Israel, the Israel Diamond Institute (IDI) said in a press release. The IDI said its president, Shmuel Schnitzer, and Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) President Yoram Dvash met with Sergey Ivanov, President of ALROSA, for the first time since he became the giant Russian miner's chief in March.
The Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) is opening the Diamond Tech Innovation Center, "a technological incubator for Israeli and international diamond-related start-ups" in the initial stages of development. The driving ideas behind this initiative is to promote "new technologies for diamonds in the broadest sense, reaching beyond gems and jewelry." This includes the use of diamonds in industrial platforms, robotics, semi-conductors, medical technologies, space technology, as well as software, finance, and B2B and B2C marketing platforms.
The Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) has announced they will open a new International Tender Centre in February during their International Diamond Week in Israel. The IDE will host three tenders of rough and polished diamond by Alrosa, I.Henning and Koin. The establishing of this Centre is an attempt to consolidate as many tenders as possible under one roof.
The Israel Diamond Exchange and Israel Diamond Manufacturers Association sent a letter to Israeli traders Diamond companies in Israel have been granted another two months to voluntarily disclose their assets, inventory and unreported income to the Tax Authority, writes Rapaport News. The trade organizations informed their members that firms have until the end of February to submit the full report of disclosures, as long as they declared their intention to do so by December 29.
According to a press release from the Israeli Diamond Industry: Alrosa will hold a tender of both polished and rough diamonds during Israel’s sixth International Diamond Week (IDWI), February 13 – 16, 2017 at the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE.) The auction will offer 108 boxes of rough diamonds of 11 to 199 carats, and several unique white and fancy color polished diamonds, weighing from 10 to 80 ct, including five that were cut from one huge rough stone.
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.
The Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) has announced the Israeli Diamond Industry has finalized the terms of an agreement with the Israeli Tax Authority.
Russian diamond mining giant PJSC ALROSA held a meeting with clients and partners at the September Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair. The company, which produces about a quarter of global supply, presented its vision for the development of the diamond market with an increased focus on the possible impact of the increased manufacture of synthetic diamonds on the natural diamond market. At a panel discussion, key market participants exchanged opinions on the risk of illegal mixing of synthetic and natural diamonds, it said in a statement.
The plan, which includes new business and commercial space, homes, hotels and student dorms, will be discussed next Sunday by the Local Planning and Building Committee, according to the Globes daily. The current 750,000 square meter complex will be expanded to 1.75 million square meters with the future diamond exchange business district being 2.5 times larger. Of this area, 1.4 million square meters will zoned for business and up to 120 square meters for commerce; about 1,000 hotel rooms will also be built in the area.
The Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) pledged to fight a decision by the First International Bank of Israel (FIBI) to tighten its lending standards for the trade. FIBI raised collateral requirements for diamond industry members, leading IDE President Yoram Dvash to write to bourse members, vowing to lobby state authorities and persuade the bank to reconsider the decision. Dvash claimed FIBI’s demands are stricter than those applicable to other sectors and alleged the move was influenced by “pressure” from Israel’s financial regulator, Rapaport reported.
Israel's tax authority will be cracking down on unreported capital, after receiving a list from French authorities of more than 8,000 Israeli customers who held bank accounts at the Swiss arm of HSBC. Israeli newspapers reported that diamond company owners were on the list, along with bank owners and directors, real estate moguls, retired military officers, public and private company heads, well-known lawyers, artists, soccer players, sports agents, a retired judge and a former prosecutor.
Rough sellers at the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) will be required to disclose that a stone has undergone inclusion mapping following an agreement between the IDE and Sarine Technologies. The IDE signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Galaxy mapping equipment maker Sarine that means traders will no longer be able to conceal that a rough diamond they sell has been through the machine. Sarine’s Galaxy systems are the only machines in the market that perform inclusion mapping on rough diamonds, the IDE said.
The system at the Israeli Diamond Exchange in Ramat Gan is built on trust, yet the arrest of veteran diamantaire Hanan Abramovich triggering an investigation into accusations that he defrauded fellow traders of $65m worth of money and stones, writes Financial Times, threatens to have a direct effect on traders who have allegedly lost out.
A lengthy article in the Ha'aretz newspaper begins by looking at the case of Hanan Abrahamovich and an alleged fraud with a value of around $55 million before talking about other financial shenanigans, such as an underground bank that operated within the Israel Diamond Exchange, bankruptcies and a family firm that allegedly owes other IDE members $15 million. “For seven months Hanan Abramovich told us stories – there is money, there isn’t money. He kept saying ‘God will provide’ and making promises. We counted 12 different stories. All the scenarios imploded.
Veteran Israeli diamond dealer Hanan Abramovich has been remanded in custody for a further two days on suspicion of fraudulently acquiring $55 million of diamonds. In addition, his son was remanded for 24 hours on suspicion of being involved, Israeli financial news outlet, TheMarker reported, citing Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) sources. His son was questioned by police after diamantaires said that he was involved in his father's business, though he claimed to not know anything about them during questioning.
Israel Police are investigating serious allegations of a huge diamond theft at the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) which could lead to the bankruptcy of up to a dozen diamond companies at the bourse. The suspicions center on veteran diamond dealer Hanan Abramovich who is suspected of stealing the diamonds and was arrested on Tuesday evening. Details of the investigation indicate that diamonds valued at around $60 million are involved, the Globes web site reported.
Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) President Yoram Dvash has called for an increase in credit lines to finance the diamond industry worldwide. He said the world diamond industry needs to work together to secure additional financing. He made the comments following reports last month that Standard Chartered Bank, which has about $2 billion in exposure to the diamond industry, was demanding additional loan protection from diamond clients. It is now asking diamond manufacturing clients to secure payment insurance or provide 100% collateral.
Diamond Services (Hong Kong), a developer and provider of gemmological services and technology that is able to accurately detect HPHT and CVD lab-grown synthetic diamonds and HPHT colour-treated diamonds, as well as diamond simulants, will expand its services to the Israel Diamond Exchange.
Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) President Yoram Dvash says there is a decline in demand and a rise in competition, and there has been a 40% drop in Israeli polished diamond exports since 2011, according to a report in Yedioth Ahronoth, Israel's biggest-selling daily newspaper. "The Israeli diamond industry has a glittering image, but in the IDE there are not a few diamantaires who are unable to make ends meet on a monthly basis," Dvash told the paper. Last year, Israel exported $5 billion of polished compared with $6.3 billion in 2014.
The International Diamond Week at the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) officially opens today in the diamond trading hall of the bourse, with hundreds of buyers from overseas participating in the event, the IDE said. CIBJO President Gaetano Cavalieri will carry out the official opening of the buyers' week, which runs until February 18, and later will sign a statement of purpose for the establishment of the Israel Diamond Jewelry organization. Later on Monday, a panel will address the issue of marketing diamonds.
"The World Diamond Mark (WDM) has developed and started to implement the fundraising from retail end of the industry and from outside service providers. This endeavour will continue. Soon the miners, through the DPA, and retailers, led by the WDM, will have the funds. If the midstream industry will not follow, its market share and profitability will shrink even further. [...] In this respect the role of major centres and bourses is paramount.
The Israeli Diamond Industry reports that Shmuel Schnitzer, who recently completed his fourth term as President of the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE), was elected January 31st as Chairman of the Israel Diamond Institute Group of Companies (IDI). He replaces Moti Ganz, who completed three terms as Chairman of IDI. Schnitzer first served from 1998 - 2004 as President of the Israel Diamond Exchange, later awarded the title of Honorary President of the exchange.
The Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) has appointed Eli Avidar, the Managing Director of the Israel Diamond Institute, as its new Managing Director, effective immediately. Avidar replaces Moti Besser who completed two terms as Managing Director. Avidar served as the IDI's Managing Director since January 2007, and was previously in Israel's Foreign Service.
Former Israel Diamond Manufacturers Association President Uri Schwartz, one of Israel's most veteran and well-known diamond dealers, is on the way to bankruptcy, writes Israel business news online publication Globes. A receivership order for his assets was issued last week because of a NIS 8 million ($2 million) unpaid debt. Bank Leumi intends to foreclose Schwartz's home in the Sea and Sun project in Tel Aviv and to seize other assets, including an apartment on Ben Yehuda St.
Israel's Channel 10 has aired a hard-hitting investigative program on the Israel Diamond Exchange, particularly the methods used by a so-called underground bank which operated from 2005 to 2011 until police raided its offices. Although many details of the case had previously been reported, Channel 10's use of CCTV footage from cameras secretly installed by the police before officers carried out the raid and details from a Red Book showing the names of some of the diamantaires said to have used the bank's services are likely to have made a particularly strong impression on viewers.
In elections for the presidency and board of directors of the exchange that are held every two years, 1,886 members voted. Dvash received 1,080 votes while the other candidate, Arnon Yuval received 716 votes.
Members of the Israel Diamond Exchange will be voting for a new president today following the decision of Shmuel Schnitzer to stand down. The two candidates for president are Yoram Dvash and Arnon Yuval. Elections will also be held at the bourse's 66th annual general meeting for directors.
Meir Ohana convicted of whitewashing checks and creating fictitious accounts as well as moving cash abroad under the cover of importing diamonds without reporting any of it to the tax authorities. The business is estimated to have dealt with at least $100 million of business. In addition to the 10-year sentence, Ohana will also serve a two-year term on probation and pay a fine of one million shekels ($260,000).
Prof. Dan Shechtman, who won the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 2011, is to be the guest of honor at the winter edition of the International Diamond Week at the Israel Diamond Exchange which will take place from February 14-18, 2016.
Shmuel Schnitzer, the President of the Israel Diamond Exchange for the past two years, and who previously served as president from 1998 to 2004, will not be a candidate for the December elections for President of the exchange, according to a spokesperson for the bourse. The election will be contested by Yoram Dvash, owner of Yoram Dvash Diamonds, and Arnon Yuval, a partner at S. Yuval & Co. Both currently serve on the IDE’s executive committee.