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Beneficiation in the Diamond Industry: South Africa

South Africa has a very long and important role in the history of diamonds. It was there, in the 1860s, that diamonds were discovered on the banks of the Orange River. The resulting diamond rush, and the establishment of De Beers' foothold on diamond mining, transformed the industry, helping to develop diamonds as a viable commercial product for more than just the world's elite. At one point in time, almost all of the world's diamond mining activity took place in South Africa. While the nation is still an important producer of diamonds, its role has diminished. Today South Africa is the world's fourth largest diamond producer by value, according to Kimberley Process statistics.

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Why are Rough and Polished Prices Disconnected?

In the diamond industry, we often hear that the cost of rough diamonds is disconnected from the price of polished diamonds. Many of us wonder how that is possible, especially since the largest cost component of polished diamonds is rough. 

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The Most Creative (and Outrageous) Products Made with Diamonds - Fashion & Music Edition

Diamonds are both an object of splendor and one of the ultimate physical stores of value. Adding natural diamonds to anything is not only a great way to enhance its appearance, but also a way to convert it into an appreciating asset. Here is yet another list showing some of the most interesting ways designers are incorporating diamonds into their product lines (read here part 1 , part 2 , Part 3, Part 4 , Part 5 ,Part 6, Part 7 and Part 8) - this time we are focusing on music & fashion.

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Should Diamonds Be Limited Only to Jewelry?

Diamond industrialist Ehud Arye Laniado often wrote about the rarity of diamonds and its role in diamond valuation, speaking of the economy of rarity associated with diamonds sourced from the most secured vault in the world – deep down in the belly of the planet.

Today, all gem quality diamonds are used in jewelry, which raises the question: has a product that is so hard to find and extract exhausted its potential as a jewelry component? According to Ehud Laniado the answer was no. 

If we consider the annual run of mine diamond output (all diamonds - all sizes, shapes and colors, including industrial, near-gem and gem quality diamonds) then, in terms of carats and value, diamonds are a rarity. Of the full run of mine diamond output, gem quality can be divided in two segments: 2-carat polished diamonds, representing ~40% of the $22B global demand in wholesale value (~$8.8B); and rough that yields diamonds weighing 1-carat or less, worth ~$13.2B.

Today, all gem- and near-gem quality polished diamonds are used exclusively for jewelry. That does not have to be the case. Ehud Laniado thought that a two-carat or more polished diamond weighing of SI quality / J color and better is such a rare product that using it in jewelry alone does not fully exhaust its economic potential.

The rarity of diamonds, especially due to the rarity economy, can be harnessed as part of an investment strategy for capital preservation. Ehud Laniado called the diamond industry entrepreneurs to consider this option in depth and begin to change traditional perceptions, adapt and adopt new concepts. 

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The Most Creative (and Outrageous) Products Made with Diamonds - second bonus Edition - From Tea Pots to Yo-Yos

In our continuing look at how diamonds are being used to add some bling to everyday household items, we have seen a long list of high-end products that have been made more beautiful, and valuable, using diamonds. Just about anything, even board games, headphones, and children's toys, can be made to incorporate diamonds as a show of wealth and sophistication. Let's look at another 10 items.

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The diamond industry pipeline starts with mining, then rough trading, manufacturing, jewelry setting and finally retailing. It may look like a short and efficient journey, however it is anything but t...
It might surprise people to know that there are only around 50 active diamond mines in the world. These mines never seem to be found on the outskirts of major cities. Instead, they are usually located...
We have seen how the industry has undergone significant changes over the past 20 years and how smaller companies have emerged to play an increasingly important role in supplying rough diamonds to the ...
When I discussed fancy brown diamonds in last week’s article, I stated that unlike other fancy color shades that are extremely rare in nature, brown diamonds are plentiful and therefore command much l...
In the last two decades, much has been said about an impending demand vs. supply imbalance in the diamond industry. Huge mines discovered over the past 40 years are nearly mined out, some argue, and n...
A major diamond rush, located in Lüderitz (in the former German colony of Deutsch-Südwestafrika - German South West Africa) is among Namibia’s most famous diamond sites. In 1907, the Germen railroad w...
When most people hear about diamond mining, they think of South Africa, where diamonds were discovered in 1866 in the Kimberley region. A 15-year-old boy discovered the now-famous 21.25-carat Eureka D...
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