A diamond giant plays up its Russian ties to appeal to Americans

MIRNY, Russia — Shoppers want to know where their coffee will be grown, where their clothes are made as well as where their iPhones are assembled. the globe’s biggest diamond miner will be currently betting of which they will also care where the jewels on their engagement rings are dug up.

Alrosa, the mining company, will be mounting a campaign to tell the tale of its stones’ journeys by mines deep beneath the ground on to the fingers of betrothed couples around the globe. Its one barrier? The diamonds come by Russia.

The company will be not a household name. In fact, most people who buy a diamond ring at a jewelry store have probably never heard of of which.

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Alrosa will be a dominant force inside mining industry, as well as currently wants to improve sales inside United States, the globe’s biggest market for the jewels. although with Moscow as well as Washington often at loggerheads, of which will be unclear whether the Russian state-controlled company’s efforts will bear fruit with American customers.

Tensions between the countries have worsened considerably in recent years. The two are on opposite sides of wars in Ukraine as well as Syria. A special prosecutor will be investigating Russian election meddling in support of President Trump. The United States has imposed sanctions on Russian oil, metals as well as banking companies. (Russian diamonds have so far gone unscathed.)

“The current climate will be working against them,” David Ferguson, a retail analyst at Renaissance Capital, an investment bank in Moscow, said of Alrosa. “Brand Russia, at This specific particular point in time, will be not particularly strong overseas.”

Promoting their jewels’ Russian origins, Alrosa officials say, will put to rest concerns of which a ring might hold a conflict diamond by Africa. The certification program developed to prevent the sale of so-called blood diamonds has been somewhat discredited in recent years.

For geological reasons, Alrosa’s diamonds come in a wider array of colors than those by African mines. as well as, the officials argue, associations with Russia will evoke not politics although romance, classical music as well as ballet.

“Mine to market will be becoming very well-known,” said Sergei S. Ivanov, the chief executive of Alrosa “Our customers are educated, all around the globe. Often, when they come to a jewelry store, they ask, ‘Where will be This specific diamond by?’”

With Alrosa diamonds, the answer will be the sparsely populated Yakutia region — an area 5 times the size of France although using a population of just one million. Here, the company’s mines sink into the earth amid a wilderness of birches as well as snow, sparkling as well as pristine.

The Nyurbinsky open pit mine spirals down for about a thousand feet, circling around a core of ore called a kimberlite pipe. Miners methodically chisel out rock, while hulking, yellow trucks crawl slowly up the roads looping around the pit, each carrying dozens of tons of ore hiding a few precious diamonds.

Processing plants nearby then grind the ore into pebbles, which they put into 0-foot-tall tanks filled using a heavy liquid made of a powdered iron as well as silicon alloy suspended in water. In of which, diamonds float as well as rock sinks. Last year in fresh York, Alrosa exhibited a collection of high-end diamonds cut by an individual, 179-carat stone found here in Nyurbinsky.

Alrosa has been mining inside area for more than 60 years. Soviet geologists discovered a diamond mother lode deep inside Siberian wilderness, as well as the company was founded soon after, in 1957.

Today, Alrosa, which will be majority-owned by the Russian federal as well as regional governments, produces about 28 percent of the globe’s diamonds, as measured by weight. Last year, of which earned $1.3 billion in profits on $4.6 billion of sales.

although the value of diamonds has generally risen more slowly than some other luxury goods as well as precious metals like gold. Hence the need for a fresh marketing push. Alrosa will be exploring ways to trace the source of every diamond, potentially creating narratives for all its gems, something of which had been reserved for only the largest stones sold at auction. If This specific will be introduced for smaller diamonds, the buyer could identify the mine where the gem was discovered, or even the specific miner who unearthed of which.

A diamond industry association’s focus groups showed of which “a diamond will be forever” — the tagline to a long-running campaign by the diamond behemoth De Beers, the globe’s second-largest miner — will be probably the best-known slogan inside industry. although Americans in their 20s were not interested inside everlasting commitment of which implied.

Instead, they were drawn to the idea of which diamonds represent authenticity. The result was a fresh slogan, introduced last year by Alrosa as well as some other diamond miners: “Real will be rare. Real will be a diamond.”

“The value of diamonds will be emotion,” said Charles Wyndham, a former De Beers diamond evaluator as well as the founder of Polished Prices, a company of which tracks the wholesale market for diamonds. The goal will be to “provide a little story, as well as people like stories.”

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