FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
GEMFLING.COM SEEKS TO DE-COMMODITIZE DIAMONDS
NEW YORK, NY, November 12, 2013 — Gemfling.com, a division of Verichannel, announced today a major initiative to de-commoditize the way consumers look at diamonds. "Commoditization is killing profit margins," said Verichannel CEO Jacques Voorhees. "We need to communicate to the consumer that there is life beyond the 4 c's, and that there is more to purchasing diamonds than looking at a grading report."
The Gemfling.com site has been redesigned to allow consumers to search for stones based on concepts they are not used to hearing about, specifically the differences between the vendors, and how the experience of buying a diamond changes between vendors. For example, Gemfling helps consumers understand—and select diamonds on the basis of—which vendors support social activism groups, which retailers are members of industry organizations like American Gem Society and Jewelers of America, what the different diamond brands actually stand for, and how all this is relevant to the buyer.
"As long as we, the industry, support the fable that all that matters in a diamond purchase is what's written on a grading report," said Voorhees, "then we have become complicit in the commoditization of our product, and the destruction of our own margins. To the extent we can take the consumer in the opposite direction, and open their eyes to things they've never even thought of before—but which they are likely to be interested in—then we've started the long march back from the current 'race-to-the-bottom' discounting madness that is the curse of our industry."
Gemfling bills itself as "The Jewelry Concierge.TM" The site does not sell product, but serves as a specialty search engine to help consumers find diamonds, jewelry (coming soon), and retail stores, based on "educational filters." Gemfling's filters are divided into categories such as "social activism," "education and credentials," "on-site services," "diamond brands," and more. Using Gemfling's filters, for example, a consumer can learn how AGS stores are different, what the different diamond brands actually mean, which stones are "locally-sourced" (mined in Canada), and which retailers have different on-site services available, such as GemPrintTM technology. The focus is less on a particular color/clarity/carat-weight combination, and more on filtering in support of the overall buying experience. Gemfling's diamond inventory includes over 100,000 stones provided by Sightholders and other diamond companies globally, but the buyer is enabled to match specific stones with specific retail stores that support the issues important to the consumer.
"Breaking the commoditization/low-margin cycle is arguably the most important challenge facing the diamond industry," said Diamond Manufacturers & Importers Association president Ronnie VanderLinden. "Gemfling is a positive step in that direction."
Background on Verichannel
Verichannel, the owner of Gemfling, is a private company that operates jewelry-industry search engines. These include DailyDiamondReport, a database of diamonds recently graded by the primary gem labs, as well as stones directly submitted by suppliers globally; IJO Diamonds, a searchable database for jewelers sourcing from IJO suppliers; FMX, a private trading platform for Forevermark diamonds and jewelry; and Worldmart*E, a B2B search engine in China that is fueled by Verichannel's diamond feed. Verichannel was founded by Jacques Voorhees, formerly of Polygon, and Bill Boyajian, past-president of GIA. Learn more at: www.verichannel.com.