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Shrenuj Opens Botswana Diamond Polishing Factory

May 12, 2010 8:08 AM   By Avi Krawitz
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RAPAPORT... Shrenuj Botswana inaugurated its diamond cutting and polishing factory in Gaborone this week and announced plans to establish a jewelry manufacturing facility in Botswana by September.

“We have created capacities in diamond polishing to cater to much higher production levels than our current intake,” said Shreyas Doshi, the chairman and managing director of Shrenuj. “It is our desire to grow and develop our diamond operations here in Botswana.”

A company spokesperson told Rapaport News that the company currently employs 151 people at the facility and that it has an employment capacity of about 230 people. The 15,000-square-foot factory has the capacity to process around $100 million worth of rough per year, the spokesperson reported. Shrenuj also has a small factory in Israel and its main manufacturing operations in Surat.

Doshi explained said that opening a factory in a producing country has been an increasingly important objective in Shrenuj’s global manufacturing strategy.
“When the opportunity arose to acquire a large diamond processing factory in Gaborone, Shrenuj was able to respond immediately,” he said, noting that the acquisition was made during the depths of the economic downturn.

The company is one of 16 Diamond Trading Company Botswana (DTCB) sightholders in the country receiving rough diamonds from De Beers. DTCB, a joint venture between De Beers and the Botswana government, was set up as part of the country’s beneficiation program to expand its diamond industry beyond just mining. As part of that plan, the government is hoping to create a trading hub in Gaborone.

Along these lines, Shrenuj said its next step in the country will be to establish a jewelry manufacturing facility, proposed to be the first of its kind in Botswana.

“We believe that with this facility we will be able to further add value to our diamonds cut in Botswana and use our marketing and distribution network worldwide to market jewelry to the global consumer under the ‘made in Botswana’ label,” said Vishal Doshi, the executive director of Shrenuj. The facility is slated to be built by September of this year.

The jewelry factory will begin recruiting around 50 people in the coming months and will soon have the capacity to ramp up to about 200 workers.

“Most of the factory will be automated and equipped with the latest technology,” the spokesperson said.

The inauguration took place in the presence of Botswana President Seretse Khama Ian Khama, Minerals, Energy and Water Resources Minister Ponatshego Minister Kedikilwe and trade and industry minister Dorcas Makgatho-Malesu.

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Tags: Avi Krawitz, Avi Krawitz, Botswana, De Beers, Government, Israel, Jewelry, Manufacturing, Polishing, Production, Shrenuj, Sightholders, Surat
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