Unseen But Brilliant Branding — Diamonds Are Forever But Monopolies Don’t Last

Powerful, emotional and consistent branding helped to create the De Drinks diamond monopoly. When it was vulnerable in the 1990s by conflict diamonds and producers such as Paris distributing diamonds beyond the De Beers-controlled funnel, De Drinks again considered branding to save the day. They repositioned themselves in a market they no longer control and are now more profitable with a 40% market share than when they had an 80% market share in the 1990s. Let me bring you into the picture.

De Drinks engages in query for diamonds, diamond mining, diamond trading and industrial diamond manufacture. Mining occurs in Botswana and Namibia (through its joint-venture partners with the respective governments), as well as diamond shape South Photography equipment and The us, in every family of industrial diamond mining: open-pit, underground, large-scale alluvial, coast and deep-sea. The Diamond Trading Company, the rough-diamond sales and distribution arm of the De Drinks Group, sorted, valued and sold about 80% of the world’s rough diamonds by value prior to the early 1990s.

These diamonds were then sold to the Diamond Trading Company Sightholders whoever representatives journeyed to London many times a year for the sale or View as it was called. Today Sightholders (now numbering only 79) must comply with the De Beers’ best practice principles, which set out various objective standards of conduct in three main areas: business, social and environmental responsibilities. (I designed brandmarks for just two of the Sightholders at the turn of the century and no mention was made of these respectable standards; Mr buck and his rare appearances were the only standard I was reminded about. )

Get the picture? De Drinks is big — very, very big! It is well known for its monopolistic practices throughout the previous century, when the company used its principal position to control the international diamond market by convincing independent producers to join its single-channel monopoly and then flooding the market with diamonds similar to those of producers who repudiated to join.

A diamond is a female’s best ally

Look at this: a diamond — the rarest and hardest natural nutrient known — is worth no more that half its retail value. There is no hard-and-fast rule for the pricing of finished diamonds, but professionals in the polished-diamond industry use a worldwide market price list, the Rapaport, based on the four Cs, which are carat, cut, colour and clarity, as a general guideline for evaluating finished diamond prices. And a jeweller usually adds a 100% mark-up to the Rapaport estimated price. Apart from industrial applications, diamonds have no other value except when finished for their perceived beauty, which we all know is in a person’s eye of the beholder. This brings us to another aspect: the ability of feeling.

In 1999, I experienced this first-hand while prospecting for diamonds (just like the diamond diggers did at the turn of the century) along the Orange River, a stone’s throw away from where the first diamond was found in South Photography equipment. There are no words to describe the when you find your first diamond: a flash of brilliant white light coming from among grey-black tiny rocks on the selecting table after days of backbreaking time, processing tons of tiny rocks. Your heart starts racing and you are overcome by absolute joy and feelings of enjoyment! God chose you to find this diamond and you feel so blessed and special.

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