ODC will be inviting approximately 50 companies to attend viewings of diamond lots in Gaborone before taking part in a live auction test. These organisations have been carefully selected to represent a cross-section of the market, making them well placed to provide ODC with feedback on all aspects of the sale. The list of invitees to the pilot will include all companies in Botswana with a diamond manufacturing licence.
Toby Frears, Managing Director of ODC said "The pilot sale represents an important final step in ODC’s establishment. It will help us ensure that our systems are efficient and robust ahead of our full sales launch and underlines our commitment to delivering a customer focused sales model."
Describing ODC’s chosen sales model, Chairman of ODC, Jacob Thamage, said: "ODC has designed an online auction that draws from industry trends and best practice and is aligned to our objective of delivering a competitive, transparent and efficient sales system."
For the system development, ODC has engaged Power Auctions LLC, a world leader in on-line auction design, whose clients have included BHP Billiton and the governments of Australia, Canada, the UK and the USA.
When full sales commence, ODC’s auction events will be open to broad participation from local and international diamond companies who will be able to gain access to the
full range of Debswana’s diamonds at market-determined prices. The full details of how to register to participate in future sales will be published in the coming weeks.
"ODC’s sales model has been designed to cater both for customers’ short and long term supply needs. In addition to regular auction sales, ODC plans to introduce fixed term supply contracts, although the details will only be finalised in early 2014," added Frears.
Commenting on ODC’s progress and business model, Minister of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources, Honourable Kitso Mokaila, stated "ODC is on track to deliver Botswana’s own direct route to market. Its open trading platform will attract diamantaires from around the world, helping deliver Government’s vision of Gaborone as a key destination for rough sourcing."