June 10, 2005
Stuller and Other New DTC Sightholders Spread the News
Many of the 11 new Diamond Trading Co. sightholders announced their status to the press yesterday, including the two new U.S.-based sightholders Stuller Inc., Lafayette, LA, and Tiffany & Co., which won a sight with its joint venture partner Rand, an existing South African sightholder.
"We are very pleased to be named a DTC sightholder," said Matthew Stuller, chairman and CEO of Stuller Inc. "This appointment validates our continuing commitment to providing diamonds to our retail base in the most efficient and cost effective manner. We started this process by investing heavily in our infrastructure for diamond sourcing, sales and service." Stuller currently cuts and polishes rough diamonds at manufacturing facilities in Israel, China and the U.S.
India's diamond community welcomes four new Mumbai-based sightholders: Kiran Exports, Bhansali & Co., Mine Stone and Tara Jewels, according to Rapaport News. There are now 34 sightholders in India.
IDEX Online reported that Exelco in Belgium received a sight, as well as Chow Sang Sang and Wing Hang, both based in Hong Kong.
Despite widespread reporting about which diamond cutting centers gained sightholders, Varda Shine, DTC sales director, told Professional Jeweler,"We're no longer selling by centers it's more by the individual companies' business models." Shine also said many of the successful applicants had a better understanding of the kinds of rough diamonds DTC can provide and how to relate that supply to their needs.
IDEX Online reported several existing sightholders opted to receive a second sight in South Africa. They are required to have local manufacturing capabilities there and to meet South Africa's Black Economic Empowerment requirements. Several southern African nations, including South Africa, have been calling for diamantaires to base more manufacturing operations in Africa, so that local people can more directly benefit from their countries¹ diamond resources.
DTC's encouragement to marketers to add value to diamonds can help in ensuring South African cutting ventures succeed, even though the costs to cut diamonds is higher than in lower wage centers such as India, says De Beers spokesperson Lynette Hori. She cited Tiffany & Co.'s new interest in South African-cut diamonds as evidence of the faith marketers have in that center.
by Peggy Jo Donahue