Six innovation domains are key for your diamond company

Antwerp, that's where diamonds and innovation come together. Do you, as a diamond company, want to benefit from this cross-over? Then the city invites you to work together. Antwerp defines six innovation domains in which it will guide you: financing, digitisation, automation & robotics, data analysis, cross-sector collaboration and finally synthetic production & trade. This report explores the innovation opportunities and challenges facing Antwerps' diamond companies in six domains.

The many diamond companies in Antwerp have put the city on the map as the diamond capital of the world. And the city wants it to stay that way. That is why the city asked the experts of Verhaert | Masters of Innovation to identify opportunities that diamond companies can seize.

Verhaert outlined six domains where innovative growth opportunities lie for the diamond sector. These are six domains in which the city wants to work together to keep your company growing.

1. Financing

The diamond trade is a capital-intensive industry. This often means: complicated financial procedures. Innovation investigates how to secure and facilitate transactions. Plus: the development of fintech solutions could boost the 'bankability' of the diamond sector with the traditional banks.

2. Digitisation

The international diamond trade evolves rapidly. Online trading platforms, technology to increase transparency and traceability, improved KYC (Know Your Customer) control systems, ... the impact of the Internet on the diamond sector is growing every day. Those who do not evolve with it, risk lagging behind in all kind of domains.

3. Automation & robotization

Does Antwerp want to regain its former market share in diamond production? Then we need to embrace the most modern production techniques and equipment. These have become the norm in almost all Western European industries in recent years. We must also implement this innovation in supporting services. For example, artificial intelligence (AI) offers added value and almost unlimited possibilities in automated grading. Do you want to reassure customers about the origin and traceability of diamonds? Then smart automation is a game-changer.

4. Data analysis

Antwerp is market leader in artificial intelligence. The diamond sector must benefit from this. With AI you collect data from various actors: diamond producers, diamond traders, online trading platforms, retailers, ... in order to create valuable market insights from this stream, make more reliable forecasts about the demand for diamonds or estimate market prices more accurately. Local AI experts working together with the diamond industry: it offers unlimited possibilities.

5. Synthetic production & trade

The market share of synthetic diamonds is likely to increase. And the technology behind it will continue to improve as well. The city of Antwerp supports projects that focus on detection of synthetic in order to separate synthetic from natural diamond. The city also will support research to expand trade activities towards synthetic diamond.

6. Cross-sector networking

Sectors enrich each other worldwide. They provide mutual inspiration. Wouldn't it be interesting if the diamond sector did the same? What if we looked around and connected more in Antwerp? With other industries, universities and the public sector? They are also involved in innovation. That way, Antwerp's diamonds will benefit from solutions that are already in use in other sectors.

Do you want to innovate in one of these domains?

Review this webinar to get more background on the innovation opportunities for the diamond industry in Antwerp. You can select the items you want to review in the upper right corner of the video.

Navigate your diamond company into the future. Complete this form and let us know you want to join one of our innovation trajectories.