GIA (Gemological Institute of America) has announced that Okavango Diamond Company (ODC) is participating in the Institute’s M2M program. As part of a pilot initiative, a selection of ODC rough diamonds that have been evaluated by GIA for its M2M program will be offered at the ODC July 2018 Spot Auction.
“The M2M platform allows ODC and our customers to finally share with the consumer the story of the proud heritage and history of Botswana’s diamonds and the positive contributions they make to society,” said ODC Managing Director Marcus Ter Haar.
“This is an important step in confirming diamond provenance, which we anticipate will have benefits for our customers, retailers and ultimately consumers.”
Marcus Ter Haar continued,
“This pilot will allow those ODC customers who participate the advantage of confirming that the polished outcome of the M2M rough stones they purchase can be certified ultimately as true Botswana origin. For the end consumer, this provides the assurance that their polished diamond is natural and has been sourced from an ethical producer country where diamonds continue to make a profound impact on the livelihoods of millions of people.”
Consumers are exhibiting greater interest in the origin of the diamonds they purchase. The M2M program allows the retailer and ultimately the consumer, to trace the journey of a polished stone, adding to its story at each point along the value chain. The M2M program allows for the individual characteristics of a polished stone and its unique journey, to be shared with consumers using mobile application and smart card technology, together with traditional grading reports.
“We are very pleased to welcome ODC to M2M as part of this pilot,” said Tom Moses, GIA Executive Vice President and chief laboratory and research officer.
“Dozens of retailers and several manufacturers are signed up, and we continue to engage the majority of diamond producers as part of the initiative.”
M2M is a digital platform that brings together GIA’s unique ability to scientifically match rough diamonds to the resulting polished gems with information from each step in the value chain that tells the compelling story of a diamond’s journey. Having completed another pilot phase of the program, GIA has processed thousands of rough diamonds ranging from one carat up to more than 100 carats.
ODC is a rough diamond marketing company that is wholly owned by the Botswana Government. It offers its global customer base open access to scale supply of the full range of rough diamonds sourced from Botswana. With access to 15 per cent of Debswana’s run-of-mine production, ODC is an important supplier to the market with sales in excess of $500 million per annum.