RAPAPORT... Collectors Universe announced that it has decided to discontinue its business in authenticating and grading diamonds and colored gemstones. Collectors Universe, parent company of the Gem Certification and Assurance Lab (GCAL) and the American Gemological Laboratories (AGL), will continue to license its Gemprint identification technology and related patents, and Howard Pomerantz will remain manager of that licensing effort.
The Palmieri Group will continue GCAL’s diamond grading business. Donald A. Palmieri, who served as president of GCAL, will continue in that position. Palmieri Group will continue providing diamond grading services, on an uninterrupted basis, under the GCAL name and from GCAL’s current offices at 580 Fifth Avenue, LL-05, New York, New York, pending signing of a definitive purchase agreement. All diamonds sent to GCAL’s laboratory for grading will continue to be processed and graded, utilizing GCAL’s equipment and grading standards, and grading will be completed in accordance with normal schedules.
Michael Haynes, chief executive officer (CEO), said, "We incurred impairment charges with respect to our jewelry businesses at June 30, 2008, and again at December 31, 2008, due to the severity of the economic recession and the worsening of the credit crisis in the U.S., and the resulting uncertainties as to the level of revenues we could expect from our jewelry businesses in future periods. The continuation and possible extension of these economic conditions has led us to conclude that it is unlikely these businesses will be able to achieve the goals we had established for them when we first acquired those companies. As a consequence, management and the board of directors have decided to exit the jewelry businesses, which will enable us to give full attention to and focus our significant resources, energy and liquidity on our core businesses in collectibles, where we have decades of experience and a proven record of success."