De Beers diamond sales fall 39% in a year
By Thomas Biesheuvel - Oct 3rd, 09:28
De Beers’s diamond buyers continued to take the rare opportunity to reject stones from the biggest supplier as the company extended almost unprecedented flexibility to ease a growing crisis.
De Beers sold just $295 million of diamonds this month, 39% less than a year earlier. The sale is the latest in a series of weak offerings as many customers have refused to buy amid concerns they couldn’t make money on the rough diamonds. The Anglo-American unit’s sales this year are down more than $1 billion from the same time in 2018.
De Beers sells its gems through 10 sales each year in Botswana’s capital, Gaborone, and the buyers - known as sightholders - generally have to accept the price and the quantities offered. The sightholders are given a black and yellow box containing plastic bags filled with stones, with the number of boxes and quality of diamonds depending on what the buyer and De Beers agreed to in an annual allocation.
This year, buyers have grown increasingly frustrated with the cost of rough diamonds sold by De Beers as the prices of polished gems slumped. That’s led to wafer-thin margins for their buyers and in some cases losses from the stones bought from De Beers and Russian rival Alrosa PJSC.
The industry’s problems are centered around an oversupply of polished diamonds that have led to much steeper price drops than for rough stones. At the same time, tighter bank financing and currency fluctuations have hurt traders, cutters and polishers.
De Beers has responded by allowing buyers to refuse half the stones in each parcel offered and also to sell back some diamonds to the company on favourable terms, according to people familiar with the situation.
“As we approach what is traditionally a quieter time of year for the diamond industry during the Diwali holiday, we have again offered our customers flexibility during this sales cycle,” De Beers Chief Executive Officer Bruce Cleaver said.
Woolworths carves out market share in SA
27/11/2019 - 10:11
In Australia, David Jones's sales declined 2.1%, with the company saying a store refurbishment contributed to the decline.
Push and pull strategies work together to keep consumers coming back for more
26/11/2019 - 10:20
The retail sector is under increasing pressure as consumers have shrinking disposable income in a strained economy. Maintaining share of wallet is critical. Relying solely on a push route to market strategy from manufacturers into retailers is not enough to get consumers buying products. A pull strategy needs to coexist with the push to drive brand consumption. Integrating these strategies requires intelligent and insightful decision-making. This, in turn, requires data generated through smart technology which provides line of sight across the value chain from manufacturer to distribution, retailer to the consumer.
Today’s customers are loyal to speed and convenience, not brands
25/11/2019 - 11:15
Consumer expectations are rapidly shifting as technologies such as mobile, geolocation, social media and increasingly, Internet of Things devices and wearables, connect people to a world of easily accessible information and convenient services. With the ability to browse, compare and order with a few swipes and taps, consumers are becoming trained to value convenience and service above nearly anything else.
Gearing FMCG manufacturing for the red season spike and maximising profits all year round
25/11/2019 - 11:03
As we enter the festive season, demand for Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) increases rapidly, often leaving manufacturers scrambling to fulfill orders from their distribution channel. If demand cannot be met, then loss of revenue is inevitable. However, over-production is not an ideal solution either, as it can leave manufacturers sitting with unsold stock that costs money to store.
Black Friday not necessarily a “black & white” decision for small business growth
25/11/2019 - 10:52
Black Friday, once only a North American marketing frenzy, has become a critical entry in the calendars of South African retail business owners.