It is “simply wrong” to ban EGL USA reports from the RapNet trading network, the lab’s directors tell JCK.
The leading diamond trading network is no longer accepting EGL reports on its service as of Oct. 1 because of concerns of varying standards at different EGL labs.
But EGL USA codirector Mitchell Jakubovic complains that his “respected lab” has no affiliation with the overseas EGLs, some of which are said to have lenient grading.
“[Martin] Rapaport has always distinguished EGL USA from other EGLs,” he says. “But in his press release, he lumped us all together.”
“The first EGL office in New York opened in 1977,” he continues. “We have built a strong reputation since then. All the problems have come up subsequent to our opening. As our reputation grew, we had others come in and try to benefit off that reputation…. We didn’t come into this confusion. We predated it.”
He notes that no other EGLs besides EGL USA have the right to issue reports in the United States, and that his lab has sought a customs ban against overseas EGL reports.
Lab codirector Jacob Tversky adds that, in surveys—including those conducted by Rapaport—EGL USA’s grading has been found to be in sync with GIA’s.
“Including us in his decision is simply wrong,” Tversky says.
Rapaport Group chairman Martin Rapaport responds that the legitimate EGLs should “change their name.”
“Some of them may be better, but they are all under the same banner,” he said. “How is the consumer supposed to tell the difference? You can’t expect the consumer to tell the difference between EGL USA and EGL International.”
But Tversky says the lab’s customers don’t support a name change.
“They have been selling EGL USA for years,” says Tversky, “and understand we are an honest laboratory that competes fairly.”
Tversky says that the majority of diamonds with EGL USA reports are sold direct to jewelers, so this won’t affect business. But for those that are listed online, the lab is working on deals with other online services.
“We don’t want to disrupt our customers,” he says. “We are looking at a way to provide them with maximum exposure.”
So far, RapNet is the only service to ban all EGL reports, though Polygon is banning reports from EGL International.
The managing director of EGL South Africa also made a statement taking issue with the ban, arguing that his lab should not be grouped “with other EGLs around the world when it comes to ethics or grading policy.”