The De Beers Group of Companies has acquired a 33.4% stake in Swiss company Synova SA, which specialises in patent-protected laser micro jet (LMJ) technology.
This innovative technology is particularly interesting to De Beers as it hopes to use it to achieve higher yield, reduce the risk of damage to stress stones and generate higher throughput due to faster cutting times and easier processing.
De Beers will now work with Synova to develop a fully automated cutting and shaping technology, with LMJ at its core, which it is hoped will offer further efficiencies in the cutting and polishing businesses.
The deal is said to highlight De Beers’ “commitment to investment in technology and in the future of the midstream”.
A media release continues: “Alongside De Beers’ investment in important midstream technologies relating to diamond sorting, inscription and grading for the Forevermark programme and diamond verification instruments, this acquisition demonstrates De Beers’ continued technology leadership.”
De Beers Group chief executive officer Philippe Mellier commented: “We have had great success with our technologies related to rough diamond sorting, inscription and grading for the Forevermark programme and synthetic detection. We believe this new cutting technology has the potential to play an important role in the diamond industry as efficiency becomes ever more important to diamanaires.”