The Ten Largest Diamond Manufacturers and Traders in the World
The diamond trade brings hundreds of thousands of people together from all around the globe. From individual miners cutting up rocks in search of the elusive gem, to the corporations that employ them, to the dealers that aggregate the diamonds, sort them, and ship them to dealers and jewelers who turn them into classic artifices of beauty before reaching their final destiny to the people who buy them.
This article will provide a list of the diamond companies who have the biggest impact on the worldwide trade of diamonds, whether they're manufacturers or traders.
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10. Rockwell Diamonds
Barely large enough to qualify as a top-tier diamond mining company, most of their holdings are in the southern part of Africa, one of the world's richest areas of diamond production. All though Rockwell's holdings are insufficient to qualify it as part of the world's largest diamond companies, the company fame came from a high media profile after a private holdings group attempted a hostile takeover. Fortunately for those at Rockwell Diamonds the attempt failed, however, making the company on the list as its rising and becoming more popular.
9. Anglo American plc
Having two headquarters one located in Johannesburg, South Africa, and the other in London, England, Anglo American plc does more than just produce diamonds. While they are among the world's largest diamond mining companies, they are also the world's single largest producer of another precious material: platinum. They also have interests in the production of a number of other materials, including copper and gold. However, their diamond production remains among the highest on the planet, and they own a number of the world's richest mines, primarily in southern Africa.
8. Gem Diamonds
Based in England, Gem Diamonds nonetheless operates worldwide, as any diamond company must be to achieve enough holdings to make it onto this list. It is notable because only a year after its founding, it announced the finding of an unusually large diamond, at 600 carats making one of the largest diamonds found in the last 25 years. This put the company on the map, and it has grown exponentially ever since. It currently maintains mines and operates labs in a number of different countries, including Angola, Australia, Botswana, Indonesia, Lesotho, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
7. Petra Diamonds
Originally focused almost entirely on exploration (finding new sources of diamonds), this company has in recent years shifted its focus towards the production of diamonds (the mining and cutting of rough diamonds). They currently own shares of eight diamond mines, including 5 of the world's largest and most productive mines. They still currently engage in exploration in Botswana, though that does not remain their largest focus. Most of their mines are also in the rich region of southern Africa; in addition they have recently expressed interest in expanding their operations elsewhere.
This Canadian diamond company was struggling as it lost 26% of its overall value in recent years. But that fortune changed overnight recently, when a mine owned by the company uncovered the largest diamond found in over a century. Weighing in 1,111 carats raw, this gem-quality stone added nearly $150 million to the value of the company, as their stock skyrocketed. The diamond is so large that it did not fit into the scanners owned by the company, and it had to be shipped to a world diamond market located in Europe to be properly assessed. Thus, little is still known about this already-famous diamond.
5. Dominion Diamond Corporation
Based in Toronto, Canada, Dominion Diamond Corporation reported $700 million in revenue in 2012. They were originally known as the Harry Winston Diamond Corporation. Today, they operate mines in Canada, the most well-known is the Diavik diamond mine located in Lac de Gras. The Rio Tinto Group, another company on this list, helps to operate that mine with Dominion Diamonds, although Dominion still owns the rights and property of the entire mine. The company was specifically founded to mine the Diavik mine, and was established in 1994 when the mine was discovered to produce diamonds.
4. Debswana Diamond Company, Ltd.
One of the few companies with headquarter located outside the Western world, located in Botswana the Company operates four mines in the country. These mines are the Orapa, Letlhakane, Jwaneng and Damtshaa mines. Unlike other mining companies, which frequently are targets of calls from human rights activists worried about 'blood diamonds,' this company has actually proven to be a powerhouse in the growth of the Botswanian economy. Bitswana was once one of the poorest nations on earth, today while it is far from the richest it has one of the world's fastest-growing economies. Debswana is a major part of that growth.
3. Rio-Tinto Diamonds
With over $4 billion in revenues, the top companies on this list include Rio-Tinto Diamonds. Rio-Tinto is unlike many other diamond companies, it is a mine-to-market company, meaning that a diamond can go from sitting in the ground to sitting in a jewelers' display case, all under the supervision of a single company. They operate on five of the seven continents. They own three mines, including one in Australia that is known as the world's major producer of pink diamonds.
If De Beers is the household name when it comes to diamond companies, ALROSA is its Russian counterpart. They reported $4.4 billion in revenues in 2012, and most of their success in becoming the world's largest diamond company comes from the discovery of a single mine in Russia, to which ALROSA claim full ownership. That mine alone is thought to contain almost $4 billion in diamonds, and ALROSA has the exclusive right to mine it. All of their mines are in Russia, and most of their mining operations take place in the frozen steppes of Siberia.
1. De Beers
This is the giant, the household name, the standard against which all other diamond manufacturers are measured. Reporting $6.1 billion in revenues in 2012, De Beers has been around for a century and a quarter. As many critics claim the company was originally founded with the intentions to control the world diamond supply, so that the company is the owner of the diamonds, rather than market forces. Eventually, the company decided the prices of the diamonds themselves. They were thus called a 'diamond cartel,' and those accusations have followed it down to the present day. However, in recent years it has come to light that De Beers does not have the control over the world’s resources as they were thought to have.