Monday, August 20, 2012

In slowdown, glitter is in diamond jewellery business

A small diamond manufacturer in Mahidharpura Ghanshyam Bothadwa is less worried about the deteriorating prices of polished diamonds and the slowdown experienced in the industry for the last few months. When the stock of rough diamonds is not enough for his 100-odd diamond workers, Bothadwa shifts about 80 per cent of them to his jewellery manufacturing unit to design exquisite rings, pendants and diamond-studded wrist watches. These jewellery articles are sold to some of the big jewellery retail showrooms in Surat and Mumbai.
A silent revolution is sweeping world's biggest diamond cutting and polishing centre in Surat. The diamond city is fast emerging as a diamond jewellery manufacturing centre with many small and medium diamantaires moving up the value chain and adding value to the glittering stones.
Many small and medium diamantaires in the diamond hub of Varachha and Mahidharpura have been using about 70 per cent of the polished diamonds processed in their factories for designing exquisite diamond jewellery while the rest is sold in the diamond markets.
Bothadwa is among very few in the industry, who have created a niche for themselves by manufacturing diamond-studded wrist watches for international brands such as Police, Armani, Rado, Tommy Hilfiger, Diesel, Fastrack, etc. He purchases branded wrist watches from the market and studs them with glittering diamonds. The masterpieces are then sold to showrooms in Surat and Mumbai.
"Last month I sold a diamond-studded branded wrist watch to a leading jewellery retail showroom in Mumbai for Rs 1.5 lakh. After a few days, when one of my friends visited the showroom and inquired about the same watch, he was quoted a price of Rs 2.75 lakh," said Bothadwa.
Samji Gabani, another diamond jewellery manufacturer, who is into manufacturing diamond-studded rings and pendants for the past two years in Varachha, said, "I started diamond jewellery manufacturing unit to add value to the diamonds processed in my factory. Our annual turnover and the profit margin have doubled up for the past two years."
He added, "The rings and pendants manufactured by us are always cheap compared to the ones available in big jewellery retail showrooms. The reason is that we use polished diamonds processed in our factory."
President of Surat Diamond Association Dinesh Navadia told TOI, "Surat is emerging as a diamond jewellery manufacturing centre. Many small and medium unit owners have started value-addition work to the glittering gems. Also, many have invested into latest technologies like computer-aided design (CAD) machines for manufacturing jewellery."

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