HONG KONG, April 14, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- JNA (Jewellery News Asia), organiser of the prestigious JNA Awards, is pleased to announce that some of the most renowned experts and respected names in the jewellery industry will return as members of the independent judging panel for the third straight year. They are James Courage, CEO of Platinum Guild International (PGI); Albert Cheng, Managing Director of the World Gold Council, Far East (WGC); and Lin Qiang, President and Managing Director of the Shanghai Diamond Exchange (SDE).
The JNA Awards seeks to honour companies and individuals that have demonstrated excellence and made positive contributions to their businesses and communities. Judging of the Awards is an independent, transparent, and rigorous process. More prominent industry experts will be announced soon to complete the judging panel, which will represent the sectors and regions key to the jewellery trade.
"We are very pleased to once again welcome these three outstanding industry leaders as principal members of the JNA Awards' highly-esteemed panel of judges. They have been with us since the start of the Awards and will continue to lend their voice of authority, valuable insight and unparalleled expertise in the judging process," said Letitia Chow, Founder of JNA and Director of Business Development - Jewellery Group at UBM Asia.
Courage commented, "I am honoured to have been invited to be a judge for the JNA Awards 2014. I have valued the opportunity to have participated in the judging process for the last two years and thus witnessed both the rising standards and growing number of entries from all levels of the jewellery industry for these prestigious and innovative awards." Since 1996, Courage has been PGI's CEO, responsible for its global jewellery development programmes, including the launch of marketing initiatives in China and India. He is also currently the Chairman of the Responsible Jewellery Council.
Cheng said, "I am proud to once again be selected as a judge of the JNA Awards. This awards programme is gaining recognition in the jewellery industry. Last year, we saw a considerable increase in the number of entries. I hope that we would see more entries this year, particularly from Asia. If you haven't submitted your entry yet, start doing so to avoid the rush." Cheng joined the WGC regional office in Singapore in March 1993 as Regional Manager for planning and business development in the Far East. In 2003, he was appointed to his current role with responsibility for operations in the entire region.
Lin added, "I am extremely delighted to once again be part of the JNA Awards judging panel. Since its inception, the Awards has recognised industry excellence in a very transparent process. I am proud to be a part of the JNA Awards, which promotes excellence in the jewellery industry." Since 2000, Lin has been the President and Managing Director of the SDE, the only official diamond trading platform in mainland China, which leads the implementation of an effective government policy for the country's diamond industry.
The JNA Awards will culminate with a ceremony and gala dinner on Tuesday, September 16, at the InterContinental Hong Kong, during the September Hong Kong Jewellery & Gem Fair. The Awards has Rio Tinto Diamonds and Chow Tai Fook as Headline Partners, with Diarough Group, Gubelin Group, Israel Diamond Institute, KARP Group, Paspaley Pearling Company, and SDE as Honoured Partners.
Now on its third year, JNA Awards 2014 is accepting entries for 16 categories. Deadline for entries is April 17, 2014, midnight Hong Kong time. For enquiries and online application form, please visit the Awards' website at www.jnaawards.com.
Notes for Editors:
1. About JNA
JNA is the flagship magazine of UBM Asia's Jewellery Group. First published in 1983, the title is the leader in providing up-to-date international jewellery trade news with an Asian insight. It features original, in-depth reports by experienced journalists covering the latest developments in the diamond, pearl, gemstone and jewellery-making equipment, and supplies sectors.
2. About the Headline Partners
2.1 Rio Tinto Diamonds (www.riotintodiamonds.com)
Rio Tinto operates a fully integrated diamonds business from exploration through to sales and marketing. It is one of the world's major diamond producers through its 100 percent control of the Argyle mine in Australia, 60 percent of the Diavik mine in Canada, 78 percent interest in the Murowa mine in Zimbabwe, and 100 percent interest in the Bunder project in India.
Rio Tinto's share of the production from its three operating diamond mines is sold through its sales and marketing office in Antwerp, with representative offices in Mumbai, Hong Kong, and New York. It also operates a niche cutting and polishing factory in Perth for the rare pink diamonds from its Argyle mine. Rio Tinto is a leading supporter of the Kimberley Process, as well as a founding member of the Responsible Jewellery Council.
2.2 Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group Limited (www.chowtaifook.com)
Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group Limited, a leading jeweller in the Mainland of China, Hong Kong, and Macau, was listed on the Main Board of The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong in December 2011 and has become the world's largest pure-play jeweller by market capitalisation. Chow Tai Fook is now a constituent stock of the Hang Seng China 50 Index and the Hang Seng Mainland 100 Index. Its principal products are mass luxury jewellery and high-end luxury jewellery products including gem-set jewellery, gold products, platinum and karat gold product, and watches.
The Group's iconic brand "Chow Tai Fook" and long-standing history of over 80 years of operations represent key competitive advantages of its business. The Chow Tai Fook brand is recognised for its trustworthiness and authenticity, and renowned for its product design, quality, and value.
The Group has an extensive retail network, with over 2,000 points of sale in more than 400 cities in Greater China, Singapore, and Malaysia. It also has a growing presence in e-commerce. The Group's vertically integrated business model provides an effective and tight control over the entire operation chain from raw material procurement, design, production, to marketing and sales through its extensive retail network.
3. About the Honoured Partners
3.1 Diarough Group (www.diarough.com)
Diarough Group was established in Antwerp in 1975 and owns diamond polishing factories in China, India, Thailand, and Botswana, with a network of sales offices around the world. Diarough is known among the most professional and respected names in the international diamond industry.
Diarough believes in building and nurturing long-term business relationships based on mutual trust, finding solutions to business and marketing problems, creating marketable opportunities through innovative products, and providing excellent client services.
Its jewellery manufacturing unit Uni-Design has produced many award winning jewellery pieces, which have been proudly worn by celebrities on the red carpet over the years.
The Group employs over 3,500 people and is engaged in a wide range of diamond business activities like rough trading, cutting, polishing, jewellery manufacturing and marketing to retailers, chain stores, global brands, and private labels worldwide. Diarough employs advanced technology and modern work speed with traditional ethical business practices upon which the Company was founded.
3.2 Gubelin Group
Since 1854 the name Gubelin has stood for the very highest standards in gemstones, jewellery, and watches. With its selection of most sought-after timepieces and jewellery of its own design, the family-run business is represented at all the prime locations in Switzerland: Lucerne, Zurich, Basel, Bern, St. Moritz, Lugano, and Geneva. Last November, Gubelin Jewellery established its presence in Hong Kong.
Besides the jewellery boutiques and the Gubelin Ateliers, the group has a newly-established Academy and a world-renowned Gemmological Laboratory. The Gubelin Gem Lab is one of the oldest and most respected institutions of its kind, relied on by dealers, auction houses, royal families, and collectors since the 1920s.
3.3 The Israel Diamond Institute
The Israel Diamond Institute Group of Companies (IDI) is a non-profit, public interest company representing all institutions involved in the Israeli Diamond Industry. Israel is one of the world's leading diamond centres, and the Israeli diamond industry has an illustrious history dating back to the late 1930s.
IDI works for the benefit of Israel's diamond industry in the areas of marketing and business promotion, international communications, R&D, rough sourcing, professional training, publishing, and security consultancy. IDI is responsible for industry participation in major trade fairs around the world, organising Israeli Diamond Pavilions, receptions, press conferences, and other events at these fairs.
IDI operates a representative office in Hong Kong, which fosters trade relations with Asian markets.
3.4 KARP Group
With over four decades of experience and expertise in the diamond trade, KARP caters to international luxury brands. Apart from being a DTC Sightholder, the group is recognised as an "institution" in the industry, using the most technologically advanced manufacturing systems in the business. KARP manufactures a huge array of products, from 0.005-carat goods to stones weighing 10 carats and above.
It excels in the production of certified fine makes, fancy-cut goods, and fancy coloured diamonds. The manufacturer is one of the few companies that has achieved up to 5-micron precision in diamond manufacturing.
3.5 Paspaley Pearling Company (www.paspaley.com)
Paspaley Pearling Company is the leading producer of Australian South Sea pearls, supplying strands, loose pearls, and mother-of-pearl shells to many of world's leading jewellery wholesalers, manufacturers, and retailers.
The Paspaley family became involved in pearling in the 1920s, and is the world's only South Sea pearl producer with origins in the natural pearl industry. Paspaley Pearling Company Pty Ltd was incorporated in 1953 and built its success and reputation as a pioneer in the cultivation of South Sea pearls. Today, the Company sets the benchmark for modern pearling practices, operating numerous pearl farms dotted along more than 2,500 kilometres of the remote and pristine coastline of north-west Australia.
Paspaley's harvest represents the majority of Australian South Sea pearl production and has a well-deserved reputation for exceptional quality.
3.6 Shanghai Diamond Exchange
Authorised by the State Council, the Shanghai Diamond Exchange (SDE) is the only diamond exchange in China and provides diamond dealers a fair and safe transaction venue under close supervision. It also enjoys a favourable taxation policy and is operated in accordance with international best practices of the diamond industry.
Established in 2000, the SDE is a non-profit, self-regulating membership organisation and a member of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses.
4. About UBM Asia
Owned by UBM plc listed on the London Stock Exchange, UBM Asia is Asia's leading exhibition organiser and the biggest commercial organiser in mainland China, India, and Malaysia. Established with its headquarters in Hong Kong and subsidiary companies across Asia and in the U.S., UBM Asia has a strong global presence in 25 major cities with 30 offices and over 1,400 staff.
With a track record spanning over 30 years, UBM Asia operates in 21 market sectors with 160 dynamic face-to-face exhibitions, 75 high-level professional conferences, 28 targeted trade publications, 18 round-the-clock vertical portals, and virtual event services for over 1,000,000 quality exhibitors, visitors, conference delegates, advertisers, and subscribers from all over the world. We provide a one-stop diversified global service for high-value business matching, quality market news and online trading networks.
UBM Asia has extensive office networks in China, Southeast Asia, and India, three of the world's fastest growing B2B events markets. UBM China has 11 offices in the major cities in mainland China, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Chengdu, and Shenzhen, where we organise more than 70 exhibitions and conferences. In ASEAN, UBM Asia operates from its offices in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Vietnam, and the Philippines with over 60 events in this region. UBM India teams in Mumbai, New Delhi, Bangalore, and Chennai organise 20 exhibitions and 60 conferences every year across the country.
For more information, contact:
UBM Asia (Hong Kong)
SOURCE UBM Asia Ltd