April 28, 1999
GE, LKI Agree to Laser Inscribe Diamonds
After sparking controversy over a secret, undetectable "process" that allegedly improves color and brilliance of diamonds, General
Electric and Lazare Kaplan International agreed to laser inscribe all diamonds processed in this manner. Read related story.
All GE-processed diamonds, which LKI will market through its subsidiary Pegasus Overseas Ltd., will include the inscription "GE POL"
on their girdles to identify the process, which LKI says improves the color, brilliance and brightness
of diamonds without reducing their all-natural content. The Gemological Institute of America says it will note such
inscriptions on its reports with the following statement: "GE POL is present on the girdle. Pegasus Overseas Ltd. states
that this diamond has been processed to improve its appearance by General Electric Co."
The companies' agreement to disclose the process follows an April 16 meeting in New York between principals of GE and LKI, hosted by
GIA President Bill Boyajian. At the meeting a preliminary protocol and interim plan were adopted. "Discussions were
candid and open," says Boyajian. "We were pleased with the recognition that GE and LKI placed on the industry and
public concerns regarding identification and disclosure of GE-processed diamonds."
GIA will conduct a research study to understand the process, the nature
of which GE still won't disclose, and explore identifying characteristics of GE-processed diamonds by tracking and building
data on stones submitted to the GIA Gem Trade Lab. Findings will eventually be published in Gems & Gemology.
- by Robert Weldon, G.G.