October 13, 1999
MVI Focuses on Branding GE/POL Diamonds
POL, the subsidiary of Lazare Kaplan International that distributes GE/POL processed diamonds, recently retained MVI Marketing Ltd. of Beverly Hills, CA, to devise a marketing strategy for the diamonds.
"GE/POL diamonds will be distributed through a small group of 30 to 50 select jewelers," says Liz Chatelain of MVI. The selection of jewelers and mode of distribution remain undisclosed, but Chatelain confirms GE/POL will be branded as a fashion product due to the diamonds' size (ranging from 1 to 3 carats) and beauty.
"People will look at these diamonds and perceive beauty first," says Chatelain. "We believe that by fully disclosing and branding this gemstone and positioning it correctly for the consumer, premiums for this product could actually be achieved." That means processed diamonds could potentially sell at a higher retail price than natural diamonds of comparable quality.
Chatelain says POL's target consumer will likely appreciate the marriage of nature and science and will also take comfort in the backing of a global, reputable company such as General Electric. (GE developed the process used to improve the diamondžs color grade and pledges the color change is permanent and requires no special care.)
"The branding of the stone requires the development of a new product name," says Chatelain. "Currently MVI is conducting consumer research to determine what name would best distinguish this product. Once that is chosen it will be tied in to an educational program for the selected retailers, as well as consumer literature, in-store signs and displays."
Separately, LKI is stepping back, turning operations for handling GE/POL diamonds over to POL.
- by Robert Weldon, G.G.