, Chief Executive Officer of the Diamond Trading Company (DTCI), the rough diamond distribution arm of the De Beers Group and the world's largest supplier of rough diamonds, granted the Israeli Diamond Institute an exclusive interview to discuss issues affecting the diamond sector.IDI: How would you describe the year 2010 for the DTC?
Varda Shine: 2010 was an enormously successful year for us at the DTC, and the industry as a whole saw a surprisingly strong year as we move further into the diamond decade.What are the DTC’s plans for 2011?
We will be focusing on maintaining our position as the world’s most effective distributor of rough diamonds and this means that we will be concentrating on the new Sightholder application process which starts in May as well as continuing our commitment to beneficiation and consumer confidence.Do you expect any changes in the number of sightholders during the coming supply period, or changes in the balance of countries of headquarters or origin of sightholder companies?
It is far too early to know yet. The application process only begins in May of this year and we won’t know the outcome until early December 2011.Diamdel Israel, where you began your career with De Beers, recently opened its new offices. How do you view this change?
The new office, with its expanded capacity, will allow Diamdel to engage more Israeli-based businesses that register with Diamdel more efficiently and effectively about the opportunity to buy the rough diamonds they require at auctions.What is the DTCI, of which you are CEO, as opposed to the more commonly known DTC? Is this indicative of a structural change in the DTC and does the ‘International’ have any impact on the industry in practical terms or is it largely internal?
DTCI is an internally used term and refers to the 100% De Beers owned parts of the DTC network and distinguishes these from the joint ventures DTCB and NDTC in Botswana and Namibia respectively.
What impact does the conclusion of the Diamond Promotion Service have on the DTC?
DTC will continue to see the benefits of increasing consumer demand through the marketing function within De Beers. However, the engine of this going forward is Forevermark instead of the previous structure.You were recently honored with the Hall of Fame Lifetime Achievement award by the Women’s Jewelry Association. As a woman in a well-respected role in what is widely regarded as a man’s industry, does this award have special significance for you?
Yes, it's great to receive the award and makes me proud of what I and other women in the diamond business have achieved. We're now starting to see more women at all levels in the diamond industry and, although we still have a way to go, it's heartening to see more key roles being filled by women.Courtesy of the Israeli Diamond Institute