De Beers has announced its list of ‘Sightholders’ for the ensuing year, taking the total to 82. Four of the five new ‘sightholders’ added for 2014-15 by De Beers to its existing list are Indian companies – Star Rays, Vallabhbhai Danjibhai & Co, J.B & Brothers and D. Navinchandra Gems. They would all be entitled to purchase of roughs from De Beers for the financial year 2014-15. All these new Sightholders had been participating in the online auctions of roughs conducted by De Beers’ group company Diamdel, which sells around a 10th of the total output, according to reports in Business Standard.
The selection of Indian Companies does not come as a surprise, as India is today the largest diamond cutting and polishing country in the world, processing maximum amount of diamonds of all size and shape. “We were purchasing rough diamond through participating in the online auctions conducted by Diamdel, Rio Tinto and Alrosa, the Russian rough diamond mining company. With our inclusion as Sightholder, we will be directly procuring roughs from De Beers, which will increase our margins,” says Samir Shah, Managing Director, Star Rays.
On the recent new additions into the Sighholder fold, Paul Rowley, Executive Vice-President (De Beers -Global Sightholder Sales) said, “Each of our new Sightholders demonstrated consistently strong requirements for De Beers’ rough diamonds via their auction purchases and we look forward to working with each of them more closely.” Incidentally, De Beers reported 12 per cent increase in roughs’ output at 31.2 million carats in 2013, compared to 27.9 million carats in the previous year.