[su_highlight background="#63A498" color="#FFFFFF"]MARKET[/su_highlight]Bruce Cleaver, the newly proclaimed chairman of the De Beers Group, will have to deal with a cautiously optimistic yet not entirely stable scenario.
Following a five-year “apprenticeship” within the De Beers mining group (during which he covered a large variety of roles, from executive manager to strategic and commercial manager), Bruce Cleaver has been sitting on the most prestigious chair since July: the CEO's. The manager therefore succeeded the resigning executive, Philippe Mellier. Cleaver's vision and experience will be of prime importance in guiding the world-famous diamond giant out of the crisis in which it has been firmly gripped over recent years. In 2015, the company totalled revenues of 571 million dollars, registering a drop of 58% compared to 2014. The 2016 figures were much better. In cycle four of diamond sales (which closed on 23 May last), De Beers raked in 630 million dollars (against $666m in cycle 3): a figure that confirms the positive and stable sign in market demand for the most popular of precious stones. The profitable trend is also confirmed in a recent study by Rapaport, according to which the growing demand is finally reducing diamond company stocks, causing a tightening of the supply and the consequent rise in prices. As proof of this fact, Rapaport saw its own 1-carat GIA-graded diamond index increase by 1.4% in the first quarter of 2016. Over the coming months, Cleaver will have to take the positive signs into account as well as the challenges and traps that may be waiting in ambush: first of all the upturn in synthetic gemstones and the precarious equilibrium of China and Brazil, crucial players in diamond terms • MG