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De Beers cashes in

De Beers

De Beers Group, the spiritual father of global diamond industry on Thursday released results for its second sales cycle of 2022.

The diamond mining unit of Anglo American has sold rough diamonds amounting to $650 million (over  P7 billion) , reflecting continued robust demand for rough as the industry fully recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic induced headwinds.

Cycle 2 sales were however slightly lower that cycle one with actual value of $660 million. De Beers revealed that owing to the restrictions on the movement of people and products in various jurisdictions around the globe, it continued to implement a more flexible approach to rough diamond sales during the second sales cycle of 2022, with the Sight event extended beyond its normal week-long duration.

“As a result, the provisional rough diamond sales figure quoted for Cycle 2 represents the expected sales value for the period 21 February to 8 March and remains subject to adjustment based on final completed sales.” the company said.

Commenting on the figures, Bruce Cleaver, Chief Executive Officer of De Beers Group, said: “The second sales cycle of the year saw the continuation of robust rough diamond demand underpinned by sustained positive consumer sentiment “.

The strong demand for rough diamonds builds on a robust performance across all industry segments in the year 2021 where De Beers clocked massive revenue growth, beating even the 2019 performance before the onset of the pandemic.

The year 2019 however had its own challenges, mainly centred on the US- China trade war, which together with Hong-Kong protests heightened caution amongst industry players especially wholesale trade financiers also eroding business sentiment, putting pressure on demand and resulted in lower sales.

In 2021, with a sluggish start in some segments of the industry, the second half of the year however saw a more positive recovery trend across the entire international diamond value chain.

The ongoing increase in consumer demand led to strong growth rates in consumer sales of diamond jewellery in the US, with holiday season sales increasing by about a third compared to 2020.

De Beers market analysts have found that the strength of demand was the result of an accumulation of savings by US consumers through the various lockdowns and restrictions on movement seen earlier in the pandemic; a pent-up demand for weddings and engagements; a strong desire for diamonds as meaningful gifts that symbolise personal connection; less luxury travel; and supported by ongoing marketing campaigns (including an increase in marketing effectiveness from De Beers).

The positive demand trends in retail underpinned the increased demand for polished diamonds and as a result, stocks of polished diamonds in cutting centres steadily declined during the course of the year.

Lower supply and steady demand for polished diamonds from retailers supported growth in polished diamond prices.

De Beers said in February that as downstream and midstream demand conditions continued to improve, rough diamond production and prices increased throughout the year 2021, following the significant reductions seen at the start of the pandemic. Midstream sentiment and rough diamond demand were robust throughout 2021.

De Beers says expectations for retail restocking in early 2022 are encouraging following the strong retail sales of diamond jewellery over the holiday season.

The growth in consumer demand for diamond jewellery is expected to continue driven by the US, primarily due to continued economic recovery, higher accumulated savings and postponed marriages.

Rough diamond demand is expected to remain steady as the midstream continues to operate with lower stock levels, manufacturing below full capacity but using a faster manufacturing cycle.

“While there continue to be risks relating to the effects of Covid-19 across the pipeline, geo-political uncertainty and cost inflation pressures, sentiment in the midstream is expected to remain positive on the back of anticipated strong US retailer restocking in the first quarter.” the over 100 years old miner said.

Diamond industry experts are of the view that the longer term evolution of the diamond value chain will continue, including a sustained focus on inventory balance, the efficient distribution of diamonds throughout the pipeline, increased online purchasing, and a greater focus on the provenance and sustainability credentials of companies and their products.

De Beers says it is well positioned to take advantage of these changes. The long term outlook for diamond jewellery demand remains positive.

For 2022 the diamond mining behemoth has guided production to 30–33 million carats (100 percent basis), subject to trading conditions and the extent of further Covid-19 related disruptions. Unit cost guidance for 2022 is c.$65/ct, reflecting the impact of inflation.


Food prices continue to rise, but at a slower rate

28th November 2022

Prices for cereals or staple foods in Botswana and other Southern African countries continue to rise at a slower pace, following trends in the global markets, according to the latest November 2022 Food Price Monitoring and Analysis by Food Agricultural Organization (FAO) of the United Nations.

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Still doing business the old way?

18th November 2022

It’s time to get business done better with MTN Business Botswana’s ICT Solutions.

Running a digital businessMTN Business Solutions Botswana, popularly known as MTN Business is an Internet Service Provider. We are a subsidiary of MTN Group Limited, a multinational telecommunications Group headquartered in South Africa, which operates in 19 markets across Africa and the Middle East.

More and more, clients are looking for ways to keep their staff productive in a dynamically changing business environment. Whether your people are working from home, the office or abroad, there is a growing recognition that digitising your operations can offer unprecedented commercial value in flexibility, productivity and growth. This new, digital reality means that it is more important than ever to stay agile – if there is anything that can slow a business down, it is being burdened by othatld technology.

Having made substantial investments in fibre technology, high-speed terrestrial and undersea networks and new frequency spectrum across the markets wherein it operates, MTN is perfectly positioned to respond to this shift in the market.

A few years ago, MTN also made the decision to build an IP capable radio network for its mobile services, giving its core network the ability to seamlessly integrate with enterprise IP networks. The mobile towers deliver services to enterprise clients absolutely anywhere it has a network, shortening the last mile and removing complexity and cost.

Now there is increasing demand from clients to connect their remote sites in all areas, including rural and semi- rural. MTN has assisted clients with overcoming this connectivity hurdle, enabling their staff to get the job done wherever they are.
MTN’s evolution

For MTN, the focus has shifted from just being a core telecommunications services provider, towards also becoming a technology solutions provider. The service offering now also includes Unified Communications, Data Hosting and Cloud Solutions, Security-As-A-Service and Managed Network Services. The scope has changed to being client and industry specific, so the requirements and service portfolio vary from one client to the next. The expectation is that a company like MTN must respond to these challenges, helping clients to get business done better as they shift from old to new technologies.

As many businesses continue to grapple with a digitally dynamic world, they face new challenges that have to be solved. This environment will benefit those that are more digitally enabled and agile. It is a brave new world that will favour online over on-site, wireless over wired and fluid over formulaic. Businesses will seek out partners and suppliers that are every bit as flexible and forward-looking as they are.
Ultimately, clients need partners like MTN Business that will invest in infrastructure, deliver the services they require, have market credibility, are financially sound and have a long-term commitment to their market presence.

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BIE to vitalize the Dignity of Engineers

9th November 2022

Botswana Institution Of Engineers (BIE), has last week hosted a gala dinner in  which they appreciated engineers who worked tirelessly and with dedication for 10 years from 1983 to steer the BIE to its current status.

The event that was held at the Phakalane Golf Estate had brought together young, experienced and veteran engineers and was held under the theme “Vitalize the dignity and eminence of all professional engineers”.

Explaining the theme, the institution’s treasurer, Thanabalasingam Raveendran said that engineers were looked upon reverentially with respect as the educated but with time it seems to have deteriorated. He indicated that there is a need to change the narrative by all means.

“The BIE exists for the welfare and the betterment of us Botswana engineers, we need to recognize specialised units within our Institution. We Engineers strongly believe in Engineers make it happen” Raveendran said.

He indicated that under the theme they appeal to all engineers to energize, to attain quality of being worthy of honour and respect and to achieve recognized superiority amongst the Society.

Raveendran stated that engineers need to ensure their end product is of good quality satisfying the end users expectations and engineers must be honest in their work.

“Approximately 8000 engineers registered with Engineering Regulatory Board (ERB) are not members of the BIE, engineers need to make every effort to recruit them to BIE” he said.

He alluded that BIE being a society, it currently needs to upgrade itself at par with professional institutions elsewhere like the UK and USA.

He further stated that BIE has to have engineering units of specialised disciplines like Civil/Mechanical/electrical etc

“As President Masisi indicated in his inaugural speech, the young people, who make 60 percent of the population of this country, are the future leaders and therefore investing in them is building the bridge to the future” said Raveendran

Kandima indicated that BIE has a memorandum of Understanding with Engineers Registration Board (ERB), where BIE is a recognised provider of CPD training, mentorship programmes and more importantly IPD undertaking to upgrade the skills and know-how of our engineers.

“For us to achieve our mandate and make worthwhile changes to engineering in Botswana, we have to be totally focused and act with intent” said Kandima.

Furthermore, Stephen Williams, past president of the BIE from 1986-1988 told the engineers that  the BIE provides a fertile environment where they can meet, share ideas and grow professionally.

“The BIE is also a nesting place for graduate engineers to learn from their peers and seniors, it also cater for engineering technicians and technologists and so nobody in the technology field is left out” he said.

He further indicated that Botswana Government provides a conductive environment for growth of engineering professionals.

“It must be stated that the Botswana Government recognises the existence of BIE and it can further be stated that the government enables ERB to carry out its mandate as a regulator of engineering professionals” said Williams

He plead with engineering companies to recognize and support BIE as it is the only source of engineering personnel’s for various Industries .

Furthermore, when giving his farewell speech, Michael Pinard , a past president of the institution  said how they are viewed as engineers by the general public might be due to some lack of appreciation as to exactly what role they play in the development of the country.

“The BIE slogan is aptly coined-Engineers make it happen, in other words, what man dreams engineers create” Said Pinard.

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