De Beers executives made two appearances in New York City last week—at a meeting of the DMIA, and in support of the Forevermark. Both drew sizable crowds. Aside from the curiosity factor, it’s assumed that many people attended for political reasons—to curry favor with what is still the most powerful company in the diamond business.
So it did not go unnoticed that one attendee at both get-togethers was Clark McEwen, Signet’s senior vice president of strategic diamond sourcing.
Signet, which owns Kay and Jared in the United States, has already secured a sight from Rio Tinto. It is talking a lot about increasing its direct rough sourcing. So it would make sense that it would eventually want to do business with the biggest name in town, and try to become a sightholder. (Signet has tried to get a sight in the past, and failed. But its Rio Tinto allocation certainly gives it more credibility.)
In response to an inquiry, Signet spokesman David Bouffard tells JCK:
Diamonds and diamond jewelry account for more than 75% of Signet’s sales in the United States, the world’s largest diamond market. Signet is one of the most successful creators and promoters of diamond brands in the U.S. and U.K. markets, effectively adding more value into the diamond pipeline. We are committed to further developing [our rough diamond sourcing] initiative, as well as building our relationships with our established suppliers of polished diamonds and diamond jewelry, who will continue to account for the majority of our diamond sourcing.