the rough gemstones
close enough to the surface that they can be mined through relatively conventional means.
There was a time when De Beers
was responsible for mining nearly
all the rough diamonds in the world.
Today, they mine just over one-third,
while a few other large, multi-national
companies such as industrial-mining
giants BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto
produce the remainder.
These entities are responsible for distributing the rough diamond stones.
Historically, De Beers pioneered an ingenious
method of protecting the price and supply of their
rough diamonds by selling them in sealed parcels of
fixed quantity and mixed assortments known as “sights”.
The privilege to buy a sight was bestowed on only a carefully
chosen handful of “sightholders” who were required to buy the
entire parcel without fail; otherwise they would lose the advantage
of buying diamonds directly from the source. While the exact process has become markedly less rigid recently, the sightholder system continues to be the main method in which rough stones are distributed to the diamond cutting centers.
The Jewelry Exchange is a sightholder.
Diamond manufacturers, also known as diamond cutters, are responsible for cutting, shaping, and polishing the freshly mined
rough diamond stones that were purchased in the sight, creating beautiful, faceted gem-quality jewels. The process is very difficult
and requires careful planning, exceptional skills, and specialized tools. This can be extremely time-consuming, with the planning
stage taking up the majority of the time due to its vital importance.
The planning involves careful consideration of the physical characteristics of the rough stone to determine the best way to maximize the value of the finished gem. Analysis, both practical
and scientific in nature, provides the best insight into choosing
the ideal shape and exact cutting process in order to minimize
the appearance of natural flaws and inclusions, while
maximizing prized characteristics such as luster and light
dispersion, while retaining as much weight as possible in
the finished diamond gem. The Jewelry Exchange has a
diamond cutting factory located overseas.
After the rough diamond is cut and
polished, the cutting factory is done with
their pivotal role. After having just taken a
rough mineral deposit and transformed it
into a sparkling diamond gemstone, the last
thing they want to do is be responsible for distribution as well. So they sell the freshly
faceted diamonds in large bulk quantities to diamond wholesalers. The world’s largest
diamond wholesalers can be found all over the world in cities of major diamond activity such as Antwerp, in Belgium, Tel Aviv, Israel or New York City, where officially-registered diamond exchanges known as bourses are located.
Diamond Wholesalers will sort them and divide them into smaller lots that are more conducive to selling to their customer, the jewelry manufacturer.
Manufacturers of jewelry acquire sizable lots of finished diamond gemstones at the Diamond Wholesaler level and use them to produce all manners of diamond jewelry: rings, pendants/necklaces, earrings, bracelets, and more. The Jewelry Exchange manufacturers nearly every piece of its own diamond jewelry, and as a sightholder with a cutting factory, we procure our diamonds without incurring the markup in price that occurs at the levels of the distribution chain in between.
Some jewelry manufacturers end their
involvement in the distribution chain right
then and there, opting to sell their bulk goods to an intermediary jewelry wholesaler. The jewelry retailer that doesn’t manufacture jewelry themselves or purchase directly from manufacturers will purchase from a jewelry wholesaler. At this link in the chain, more markups are made.
The final stop in the distribution chain
before it reaches you,the customer. Online or in
a “brick & mortar” jewelry store, the retailer has
to markup the price once again in order to make
a profit. The Jewelry Exchange has 16 locations
across the United States and a website,
JewelryExchange.com that you can use to
satisfy all your diamond jewelry cravings, but because
our distribution chain is much, much shorter,
the prices of our diamond jewelry ends up being about
half as much as what you would find at
most other jewelry retailers.