De Beers Defends Policy Toward Small Dealers

In a meeting with representatives of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses, De Beers stressed that its "Supplier of Choice" strategy is not meant to harm small dealers. The WFDB recently met with De Beers to address concerns that "Supplier of Choice" will axe small and medium units (SMUs) from the pipeline. The meeting grew out of the recent presidents' meeting in Idar-Oberstein, Germany. (See "Protecting the Pipeline," JCK, Sept. 2001, p. 110.) In its presentation, the WFDB argued that SMUs are an integral part of the business, noting that they supply the trade with extra capital and expertise. "These smaller and medium-size units absorb goods which are often not economically viable—or not of sufficient interest—in the hands of the large sightholders," said a WFDB statement. "Their disappearance will make it more difficult for the large players to optimize revenues and effic

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