1st India Diamond Week in Mumbai A Success
he Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council successfully held the first India Diamond Week (IDW) at J. W. Marriott Mumbai Sahar, from November 6-8. Over 110 buyers from 11 countries including USA, Turkey, China, Russia/CIS, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, got a half-hour, one-on-one slot during the event with each of the 48 Indian diamond manufacturers.
The three-day event was a hit and both the buyers and sellers were happy with the outcome that would help them build business ties between national and international diamantaires in the time to come.
In his inaugural speech, GJEPC chairman Praveenshankar Pandya noted, “We find this concept very focussed as has been the experience in the past seven editions held abroad. The format is conducive to doing some serious business and the results have been positive, but it would be difficult to guess the business that was transacted at IDW as the deals were done directly between buyers and sellers.”
Pandya added that since the inventory of suppliers was matched in advance with the requirements of the buyers, it had positive bearing on the sales. “There’s a pressing need for focussed buying activities with our customers worldwide, to ensure that supply and demand should match on a regular basis.” Pandya also noted that this format complements larger B2B exhibitions and will propel India’s growth in the diamond sector.
Speaking to the media on the sidelines of the show, Reuven Kaufman, president, Diamond Dealers Club of New York, compared the concept to speed dating, stating that their organisation was the first to initiate the buyer-seller concept as it is the best way to support and increase business. Citing close ties with the Indian diamond community, Kaufman said that a contingent of 40 members had visited the first edition of IDW. He said that the speed dating had got converted to quite a few ‘marriages’ at the event as deals were finalised, “and the buyers can’t wait to come back”. “The GJEPC has done a magnificent job with its first Mumbai edition,” commented Kaufman. “The keyword here is uninterrupted networking. Many of our members visited India for the first time. Tremendous amount of business was done during the three-day event.”
Mehmet Can Özdemir, a board member of the Turkish Jewellery Exporters Assembly, informed that Turkey was represented by 27 buyers for the show. He felt that having an intimate, oneon-one meetings helped them transact business. “In a large show, we tend to get lost, but smaller formats tend to be effective. Many of us were able to strike collaborative deals.”
In general, it made sense to most buyers to come and meet suppliers of India, which is the world’s largest manufacturing hub of cut and polished diamonds.
One such visitor testified the worth of visiting India. Gurhan Temeltas of Atasay Jewellery, one of the largest jewellery companies in Turkey, stated that he visits India every 45 days to source diamonds and find new suppliers. “This single trip to the IDW event helped me identify more suppliers than I ever have in so many trips. I found diamantaires who could deliver the stock of exact size and colour specifications regularly. This helps plan our jewellery production time lines, thus leading to sustainable growth.”
Kaufman agreed that being assured of steady supplies of diamonds from diamond manufacturers in the world’s biggest manufacturing hub also makes the business cost-effective.
Another buyer commented that earlier their company would source diamonds from Antwerp but in the recent past they have shifted their focus to India.
Pandya concluded that since the event had a positive outcome, many buyers showed interest in visiting future editions of the show in India. “November is a good time for big markets, especially the US that needs to cater to the demand for the holiday season. “With the Middle East having completed a major festive season, and the Chinese New Year not too far away, even the buyers from these countries felt that it was a good time to host the show,” he stated.