The Gemological Institute of America has created a network of new take-in windows to be managed by consolidators, soon to be operational in countries around the world, which will form an international diamond shipment consolidation system for the GIA Laboratory and its clients.
“This means that GIA will soon have an array of take-in windows around the world where individuals and diamond dealers of varying size and location will have easy access to GIA Laboratory services,” said Ralph Destino, GIA chairman.
The consolidation service is titled “LabDirect.”
Destino said that consolidator contracts have been signed with The Rapaport Group, Malca-Amit LLC, and the Dubai Multi Commodities Center. The Rapaport Group, in collaboration with Brink’s Global Services, will be providing access to GIA via Brink’s offices worldwide. In addition, GIA’s own offices in Geneva, Hong Kong, and Antwerp will provide similar services, as will GIA’s education affiliate in Japan, the Association of Japan Gem Trust.
“We are building a first-class international network of drop-off and shipment points to assist the maximum number of clients in moving their goods to the GIA Laboratory in a safe, expedient, and cost-effective way,” Destino said.
GIA says that the term “consolidator” refers to diamond industry forwarding services based in various international locations that consolidate diamonds from the local regions and ship them to the GIA Laboratory. A consolidator for the laboratory prepares stones for shipping to GIA with an agreed upon protocol, communicates grading results to the end clients, and is responsible for collecting payment from each client.
Under the new system, those interested in having diamonds graded by GIA will be able to drop their stones off at the most convenient, authorized consolidator who will provide prompt and secure transportation to and from one of GIA’s two laboratory facilities located in New York and Carlsbad, Calif.
In establishing these arrangements, GIA says it is fulfilling its pledge to widen access to its laboratory services by discontinuing its former “membership” structure and by appointing a series of consolidators in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.