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De Beers predicts that strengthening markets and increasing demand will lead to a period of "heightened opportunity" for the diamond industry
De Beers predicts that strengthening markets and increasing demand will lead to a period of "heightened opportunity" for the diamond industry

Enormous opportunities in diamond industry: De Beers

De Beers has forecast a period of “heightened opportunity” for the diamond sector, with industry members being advised to take action now in order to reap future rewards.

Addressing attendees at the recent Dubai Diamond Conference, De Beers Global Sightholder Sales executive vice president Paul Rowley stated that those working in the diamond industry only had a few years to implement changes.

“The industry will soon be faced with a period of heightened opportunity, the like of which we have not seen in more than a generation,” he said. “In order to capitalise fully on the opportunities we need to focus now on the appropriate investments. There is no time to waste.”

Paul Rowley, De Beers Global Sightholder Sales executive vice president
Paul Rowley, De Beers Global Sightholder Sales executive vice president

Rowley told Jeweller that these opportunities would be fuelled by the strengthening consumer market in the US, which he described as the “traditional powerhouse” of global consumer diamond demand.

He also believed there would be a rapid increase in demand in developing regions such as China and India, the details of which have also been outlined in De Beers’ inaugural Diamond Insight Report.

At the conference, Rowley said De Beers was using targeted investments across multiple areas of the business to position itself – and the wider industry – for future success. Some of these included investing in “diamond equity” at the consumer level by way of detection technology and increased demand via its Forevermark brand; changes to its rough diamond sales and distribution model; and production capacity expansion and exploration.

He also used Dubai as an example of a market that had become a “key destination on the global diamond map” due to strategic investments.

“Dubai saw that it had the opportunity to grow into a major business-to-business trading centre for the diamond industry but it needed to make certain investments to encourage diamantaires to set up operations there,” he explained.

“The leadership of the Emirate has since invested hugely in various infrastructure projects that made this a real possibility … as well as investing in industry-specific investments such as the creation of a dedicated commodities trading centre.”

Rowley added, however, that it was not just governments and major organisations that could take advantage of market opportunities. He emphasised that all diamond-related businesses could contribute to industry expansion.

“There are several things that will be important for the wider industry to focus on if it is to maximise the opportunities on the horizon,” he stated. “These include improving retail standards, focusing on marketing and advertising, improving online presence (as people increasingly both research and purchase jewellery online) and carrying an effective product mix.

“We are currently seeing a period of rapid change in the industry, including developing consumer attitudes, trade structures and profiles of demand. With this in mind, it’s important for all industry participants to keep looking out for developing trends and thinking about how best to position your own business to capitalise on opportunities or avoid challenges that result from these trends,” Rowley concluded.

The second Dubai Diamond Conference took place from 21 to 22 April 2015.

More reading
Global diamond jewellery demand sets new record
Diamond jewellery demand reaches record high
De Beers contract overhaul begins











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