BY PATRICK DEGENHARDT // Head of Marketing
Diamonds are, for many of us, a once in a lifetime purchase. As metaphors for our love, we look to them to reflect the beauty, honesty and commitment of our most important relationships. It’s vital, therefore, that we feel able to trust in the integrity of such a deeply personal and valuable investment.
Yet authentication and transparency are difficult and long-standing challenges for the diamond industry (read more on blockchain diamond tracking and diamond provenance). With a proliferation of untrustworthy operators, it can be extremely difficult to verify the origin, craftsmanship and sustainability credentials of any given stone. With no way to verify the claims of sellers, buyers must hope that the diamond of their dreams does meet all their hopes of sustainable and responsible business practices.
Together with diamond manufacturer and retailer Chow Tai Fook, and leading independent diamond grading authority Gemological Institute of America (GIA), we developed a technological solution that offers buyers the transparency and trust they deserve.
Built on the security, privacy and irrefutability of the blockchain, our solution starts with the creation of a unique identity – a digital ‘twin’ – for a diamond. As the diamond progresses along its journey from mine to market, the blockchain can securely log everywhere it goes and everything that happens to it. Customers of Chow Tai Fook’s T Mark brand receive a permanent, unalterable record of their stone’s grading reports and the unique craftsmanship traits – such as cut and polish – that tell the lifetime story of the asset.
Effectively, T Mark diamonds are certified two times, by Chow Tai Fook, ensuring traceability, truthfulness, thoughtfulness and transparency, and by GIA’s digital grading report identifying each stone’s colour, clarity, cut and carat weight. Consumers can access this information, secured by our blockchain technology, by a mere tap on a mobile app.
By exposing the whole journey of the diamond, our solution is also protecting against unfair trade and unethical sourcing. This allows buyers to be more knowledgeable about their purchase, in order to avoid the pitfalls of diamonds that don’t meet Kimberley Process standards or originate from conflict zones.
Through unprecedented visibility and reliability, our partnership with Chow Tai Fook and GIA is allowing trust and confidence to begin the process of reclaiming a marketplace that had, for many years, been a wild frontier. Now, when Chow Tai Fook tells a customer about the origin, craftsmanship or sustainability of your diamond, the blockchain can back up the claim with tamper-proof, time-stamped evidence. It’s an industry breakthrough that opens a bright new chapter in customer experience.