Author Archive | Bob Forster

Genesis Diamonds’ 10th Anniversary in Nashville???

Genesis Diamonds came to Nashville 10 years ago. In last year’s Channel 4 investigative report, one of the jewelers they interviewed said,  “Genesis Diamonds basically changed the diamond market and landscape in Nashville…and not for the good.” (see video clip) Over the last several years, Diamond Outlet has fought back, and the results have changed the diamond market and landscape in Nashville…and around the world…for the good of the consumer.  Here’s a timeline showing major events from that campaign:

But first, let’s take a look at history of the folks that would have Nashville consumers think they’re the best place to shop for diamonds…

Long before Genesis Diamonds came to Nashville in 2005, owner Boaz Ramon has been challenged for his questionable claims and unethical business practices. Ramon was the president of Diamonds Direct USA, Inc., a retailer in the Charlotte, NC area.

1999-2000: After receiving multiple complaints and conducting an in-depth investigation, the Better Business Bureau approaches Ramon about his advertising claims, compelling him to get ads back into compliance or risk expulsion. Multiple jewelry stores withdraw their BBB membership in protest of Diamonds Direct being allowed to continue membership. (See full article)

April 2000: Ramon is sanctioned by the Jewelers’ Vigilance Committee for advertising claims that could not be substantiated. Customers come forth with claims of diamonds being over-graded by 4-5 color grades and 1-2 clarity grades. (See full article)

Sound familiar? These are the exact claims that would be proven over a decade later when Diamond Outlet purchased 2 diamonds graded with foreign certs (in 2011-2012) and then sent them to three independent US labs (GIA and 2 others) to be re-certified using accepted US guidelines.

March 2004: Ramon steps down from management of Diamonds Direct USA under circumstances that were not clear, as reported by the Charlotte Business Journal.  David Rousso, a local competitor, said, “I’d hope the owners would change their philosophy and the way they advertise and mislead the public in their grading standards.” (See full article)

Spring 2005: Ramon opens Genesis Diamonds in Nashville. Complaints similar to the ones raised by customers and competitors against Diamonds Direct in Charlotte have now been filed against Genesis Diamonds in the Nashville Market.

December 2011: Diamond Outlet decides that enough is enough, and launches campaign to expose the truth about misleading foreign diamond certifications: That using these foreign certs to make the customers believe they are buying at or below wholesale is beyond unethical. Thanks to an Emmy-nominated investigative news story, the industry obviously agreed and took strong action. (See entire timeline)

By the way, Diamond Outlet has been in business for over 32 years in Nashville. We are in our third generation of operating a family business that is committed to serving our community with integrity.  We have NEVER sold a diamond with a foreign certification.

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Our family store has been in business for over 32 years, but we’ve been on quite a journey since 2011. That’s when my wife Helen and I decided we were going to get serious about addressing the matter of foreign diamond certifications. We felt it was a threat to the legitimacy of our entire industry, and it was certainly making it impossible for us compete on a level playing field. We decided to purchase a diamond from a local competitor, Genesis Diamonds, and so began the journey. Little did we know that the events to follow would have powerful and far-reaching implications in the diamond industry, both nationally and internationally.

I decided to start this blog as a vehicle to share my thoughts about our industry, and the issues that affect it. Since 1983, I’ve traveled from New York to Hong Kong, Bangkok, London and Mumbai (Bombay) as a senior executive for three of the largest diamond corporations in the world. This, in addition to being the 2nd generation owner of an independent, family-owned jewelry store has given me great insight into the diamond industry from the highest levels to the grass roots. Over the upcoming weeks, months, and hopefully years, I will begin to share my thoughts and experiences for those who care to hear.

I thought the best place to start would be by sharing one of the current radio ads we’re airing here in the Nashville market…

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