Leading diamond company, De Beers remains buoyant regarding the demand for its products amidst a slowdown in the global economy.
The company’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Bruce Cleaver says in De Beers’ 2020 Diamond Insight Report that despite the pandemic causing consumers to change their spending, they still prefer gifting with something valuable.
He says diamonds are uniquely placed to fulfill these requirements as diamond jewellery reflects stability and expresses true affection.
“Two in five consumers choose diamond jewellery as the gift they most desire to give or receive, according to our research in July,” said Cleaver.
Since travel, which for a long time has been the main competitor to diamonds as a means of creating memories has been restricted this year, Cleaver says this has benefited the diamond market.
He says another research carried out in August has revealed that one in eight Americans would choose a diamond over other options to mark a special occasion.
“Importantly, consumers are open to marketing from diamond retailers. It is seen as a tie to normality, and even the most pessimistic customers do not reject the prospect of receiving communication from jewelers,” he said.
Since the outbreak of the corona virus, De Beers which is Botswana’s business partner in Debswana Diamond Company has undertaken research to understand consumer consciousness as the company navigates through the various stages of the crisis.
The research sought to establish how consumers felt towards diamonds over recent months.
Cleaver says overwhelmingly, it was found that throughout the pandemic, consumers have seen diamonds continuing to play an important and relevant role in their lives.
“In fact, for many consumers, the purchase of a diamond and all it stands for has taken on even greater meaning,” Cleaver said.
He added that this was due to lockdown and an increased desire to show appreciation for loved ones through timeless gifts.
Following the events that took place this year, Cleaver says trends such as the rapid increase in online purchasing can be expected.
Meanwhile, rough demand and volume of cutting and polishing are expected to remain significantly below normal trading conditions in 2020.
It is expected that the pandemic will accelerate the transformation that was already underway in retail such as greater e-commerce sales and better inventory management.
This shift could lead to a more efficient and healthy diamond pipeline in the longer term, the Insight Report has stated.
De Beers futher states that the it will take for global production to return to pre-Covid-19 levels of operating will depend heavily on the pace of economic recovery, the impact of potential lockdown in future, and the growth of consumer demand.