india and China’s combined share of the global diamond jewellery market is expected to grow from 15 per cent to 20 per cent within the next two years, said De Beers Group, the world’s largest producer of rough diamonds.
“The markets in India and China are growing fast. India, which currently accounts for seven per cent of the global diamond market, is growing at 30 per cent. This growth will propel the markets further, on the back of a good conversion rate,” said Binita Cooper, managing director, Forevermark India. Forevermark, a 100 per cent subsidiary of De Beers, is the only brand in India from the company.According to a recent Crisil report, the population of India and China are fast becoming diamond consumers, given the fact that the market in both countries is growing at around 25 per cent yearly. The report had also said the industry was growing well in both segments – polished and rough diamonds – despite inflation.
Cooper said the company was expecting about 20 per cent of its business to come from the two Asian giants over the next couple of years. “We want to assume a market leading position within the next few years, and in that capacity, the role of emerging markets like India and China will continue to remain vital. Our strategy will be to work through our partners and we are looking at entering 45 stores from the current 30 .”Even as gold prices continued to rise globally, more and more individuals are looking at diamonds as an alternative. The conversion rate in diamond buying, that is converting from low carat to high carat diamonds, has gone up to 30 per cent in India, of which 18 per cent are first-time buyers.
“The diamond market is seeing an upswing due to an increased activity from the aspirational middle class and because people are graduating from buying gold as an investment to diamonds,” said Siddharthaa Sawansukha, CEO, Sawansukha Jewellers, a Kolkata-based jeweller.
Both Sawansukha and Cooper said buying during the festive season will not be affected by inflation. “About 35 per cent of the yearly business comes from the festive season. I do not see buying waning because of inflation. We expect a strong season this year as well,” said Sawansukha.