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De Beers Salutes Bud­ding Ta­lent

De Beers Group de­clared the 2016/17 Shin­ing Light Awardees in Namibia. The Shin­ing Light Awards, now in its 20th year in South Africa and eighth year in Botswana and Namibia, are part of the De Beers Young Jew­ellery De­sign­ers Skills De­vel­op­ment Ini­tia­tive, de­signed to sup­port ben­e­fi­ci­a­tion ef­forts in De Beers Group’s pro­ducer coun­tries across south­ern Africa. The awards sup­port the de­vel­op­ment of par­tic­i­pants’ busi­ness skills in the ar­eas of jew­ellery de­sign, man­u­fac­tur­ing, sales and mar­ket­ing.

De Beers Group re­cently an­nounced the win­ners of the 2016/17 Shin­ing Light Awards that supports the De Beers Young Jew­ellery De­sign­ers Skills De­vel­op­ment Ini­tia­tive. The awards, which recog­nise and cel­e­brate emerg­ing jew­ellery de­sign­ers in Botswana, Namibia and South Africa, pro­vide en­trants with a valu­able plat­form to build their ca­reers in the jew­ellery de­sign in­dus­try.

This time, the par­tic­i­pants were re­quired to de­sign com­mer­cially-vi­able jew­ellery col­lec­tions that demon­strated an artis­tic in­ter­pre­ta­tion of this year’s theme, ‘Pro­tect­ing Na­ture’s Beauty’. The theme was cho­sen by Forever­mark, the di­a­mond brand from De Beers Group, in recog­ni­tion of the com­pany’s com­mit­ment to bio­di­ver­sity, con­ser­va­tion and sus­tain­abil­ity. The fo­cus of the awards has evolved over the re­cent years, mov­ing away from de­sign­ing and pro­duc­ing in­tri­cate artis­tic pieces to more com­mer­cial jew­ellery col­lec­tions, which would ap­peal to a broader con­sumer mar­ket.

Fi­nal­ists from Botswana, Namibia and South Africa were se­lected from more than 130 en­tries for their out­stand­ing jew­ellery de­signs and unique in­ter­pre­ta­tion of the theme. Fol­low­ing the fi­nal judg­ing, the win­ners from each coun­try are (in no par­tic­u­lar or­der):

Mbako Baraedi (Botswana), Richardlee Shoombe (Namibia) and Andile Mbeje (South Africa) won the first place, and they will re­ceive a 12-month ap­pren­tice­ship at the Forever­mark De­sign and In­no­va­tion Cen­tre in Mi­lan, Italy, where they will have the op­por­tu­nity to work along­side jew­ellery de­sign­ers at one of the world’s fastest grow­ing di­a­mond brands.

Pat Dambe, vice-pres­i­dent, cor­po­rate af­fairs and gov­ern­ment re­la­tions, De Beers global sightholder sales, said: “We are de­lighted to an­nounce the win­ners of this year’s Shin­ing Light Awards, which pro­vide a fan­tas­tic plat­form for emerg­ing jew­ellery de­sign­ers in south­ern Africa to show­case their skills, and which play an im­por­tant role in nur­tur­ing de­sign ta­lent in di­a­mond pro­duc­ing coun­tries. Each win­ner will now have the op­por­tu­nity to fur­ther ad­vance their skills through in­dus­try ex­po­sure and train­ing, and we can’t wait to see where the fu­ture takes them.”

Stephen Lussier, ex­ec­u­tive vice-pres­i­dent, mar­ket­ing, De Beers Group and CEO, Forever­mark, said: “Through the Shin­ing Light Awards, Forever­mark is pleased to sup­port the ca­reers and learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ences of emerg­ing jew­ellery de­sign­ers from south­ern Africa, and pro­vide them with the op­por­tu­nity to gain valu­able in­sights into the global jew­ellery de­sign in­dus­try by work­ing along­side de­sign­ers at one of the world’s fastest grow­ing di­a­mond brands.”

Mbako Baraedi (Botswana) Bracelet

Mbako Baraedi (Botswana) Ring

Mbako Baraedi (Botswana) Pen­dant

Mbako Baraedi (Botswana) Ear­rings

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