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Thailand leads ASEAN in JNA Awards 2015


HONG KONG, 17 September, 2015 – Thailand has proven to be at its strongest to date at the fourth annual JNA Awards, with four companies receiving five Honouree nominations across four categories this year. Organised by JNA (Jewellery News Asia), the JNA Awards is an annual event that recognises and honours outstanding enterprises and individuals for their achievements in and contributions to the jewellery and gemstone industry.

Past Recipients of the JNA Awards from Thailand – China Stone Co Ltd, PANDORA Production Co Ltd and Pranda Group – are back to challenge themselves in different categories. Meanwhile, MKS Jewelry International Co Ltd is a first-time Honouree in the prestigious international jewellery awards programme.

Shortlisted companies and their award categories are:
1. China Stone Ltd
   • Industry Innovation of the Year
   • Outstanding Enterprise of the Year – ASEAN Countries
2. MKS Jewelry International Co Ltd 
   • Manufacturer of the Year – Gem-set Jewellery
3. PANDORA Production Co Ltd
   • Outstanding Enterprise of the Year – ASEAN Countries
4. Pranda Group
   • Employer of the Year

Jewellery pieces by (from left) China Stone Ltd, MKS Jewelry International Co Ltd,
PANDORA Production Co Ltd, Pranda Group
Mr. Witt Maneenetr, Trade Commissioner and Consul of the Office of the Thai Trade Commissioner in Hong Kong, said: “Thailand has been recognised as a trading and design centre for its large-scale gems and jewellery industry. We are one of the world’s largest traders in coloured stones as well as silver jewellery, in which we are renowned for our cutting, polishing skills and design. It’s encouraging for an international event like the JNA Awards to acknowledge and celebrate the hard work and accomplishment of these Thai jewellery companies.”

“It is indeed very heartening to see the strong participation and achievements of Thai companies this year. I find it very admirable that three of these companies have won at previous JNA Awards, but they return  to take on a bigger challenge to enter categories that they have not yet been recognised before,” added Letitia Chow, Chair of the  JNA Awards 2015 Judging Panel.

Three-time JNA Awards Recipient, China Stone, is a top producer and supplier of machine-cut, high-precision coloured gemstones known for its digitally calibrated array of colours, proportions and sizes. The company embraces technology as its best friend, applying innovative solutions to its entire operation.  “Winning a JNA Award provides the means to compare the company’s progress against other businesses. The Awards also boosts the morale of staff and recognises the hard work and contribution they have made,” said Li Chongjie, Founder and Managing Director of China Stone Co Ltd.
One of Thailand’s oldest coloured gemstone jewellery manufacturers, MKS Jewelry International Co Ltd is known for its mastery of the invisible setting technique and signature collections that have raised the bar for fine jewellery production across the region. “The JNA Awards is shining the spotlight on outstanding enterprises and individuals in the industry. By recognising and celebrating our industry’s most dynamic and forward-looking companies, many benefits are gained,” remarked Majid Algouneh, Chairman of MKS Jewelry International Co Ltd.
Acclaimed as one of the top three jewellery companies in the world by retail value, PANDORA has set up its manufacturing arm, PANDORA Production Co Ltd, in Bangkok. It employs more than 10,000 skilled craftspeople and is committed to being the Fastest to Market (F2M) and most cost-efficient manufacturer of affordable luxury jewellery in the world. The company said, “The JNA Awards provides an important benchmark for companies in the industry to aspire to and, in turn, serves as a stimulus to further enhance the industry’s competitiveness and professionalism in a rapidly changing landscape.”
Pranda Group is Thailand’s leading fine jewellery manufacturer, renowned worldwide for top-quality jewellery craftsmanship that has won it multiple global accolades. The company has three distinct core businesses – jewellery production, distribution and retail. Its strong corporate philosophy, focus on employee well-being, efficient manufacturing facilities, and commitment to social responsibility have won them the JNA Awards in Manufacturer of the Year (2012) and Sustainability Initiative of the Year (2013) categories.
The JNA Awards judging panel is comprised of five industry experts namely Albert Cheng, Advisor to the World Gold Council, Far East; James Courage, Chairman of the Responsible Jewellery Council; Lin Qiang, President and Managing Director of the Shanghai Diamond Exchange; Nirupa Bhatt, Managing Director of GIA India and the Middle East; and Yasukazu Suwa, Chairman of Suwa & Son, Inc.  
The Award Honourees and Recipients will be feted at the JNA Awards 2015 Ceremony and Gala Dinner, which will be held on Sunday, September 20 at the Regal Airport Hotel Hong Kong. It is a ticketed event by application only. Interested parties can submit their request by logging on to http://www.jnaawards.com/
JNA Awards 2015 is led by Rio Tinto Diamonds and Chow Tai Fook as Headline Partners, with Diarough Group, Gübelin Group, Israel Diamond Institute Group of Companies, Shanghai Diamond Exchange, and Guangdong Land Holdings Ltd as Honoured Partners.

For more information on the event, please visit http://www.jnaawards.com/ or contact:
JNA Awards Marketing
UBM Asia (Hong Kong)
+852 2516-2184
[email protected]

Notes for Editors:

1.      About JNA (www.jewellerynewsasia.com)

JNA is the organiser of the JNA Awards and is the flagship publication 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, jewellery manufacturing, and equipment and supplies sectors.


2.      About the Headline Partners

2.1 Rio Tinto Diamonds (www.riotinto.com/diamondsandminerals)

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 interest in 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 Ltd, one of the world’s leading jeweller and the largest in terms of sales, was listed on the Main Board of The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong in December 2011. Chow Tai Fook is now a constituent stock of the Hang Seng China 50 Index and the Hang Seng Mainland 100 Index.


The iconic brand "Chow Tai Fook" of the Group has been widely recognised for its trustworthiness and authenticity, and renowned for product design, quality and value. The acquisition of Hearts On Fire, an internationally acclaimed US luxury jewellery brand, has further underpinned the Group's stature as a diamond expert in the industry.


The Group has an extensive retail network comprising 2,270 Chow Tai Fook and Hearts On Fire points of sale spanning nearly 500 cities in Greater China, Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea and the United States, as well as a strong and fast growing e-tail network through operating its Chow Tai Fook e-Shop and various e-tail accounts on other online shopping platforms.


The Group’s sophisticated 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 POS and e-tail channels.


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 Gübelin Group (www.gubelin.com)

Since 1854, the name Gübelin has stood for the very highest standards in gemstones, jewellery and watches. With its selection of the 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, Gübelin Jewellery established its presence in Hong Kong.


Besides the jewellery boutiques and the Gübelin Ateliers, the group has a newly-established Academy and a world-renowned Gemmological Laboratory. The Gübelin 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 Israel Diamond Institute Group of Companies (www.israelidiamond.co.il)

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 IDI works to enhance Israel’s position as a major trading and manufacturing hub.


IDI works to benefit Israel’s diamond industry in a variety of areas including: marketing and PR, technological innovation, encouraging local manufacturing, training, and security consulting. IDI seeks out new markets for Israeli diamonds and develops existing ones. As part of this effort, IDI organizes industry participation in major trade fairs around the world, establishing Israeli Diamond Pavilions and sponsoring events at these shows.


IDI operates a representative office in Hong Kong, which fosters trade relations with Asian markets.


3.4 Shanghai Diamond Exchange (www.cnsde.com)

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.


3.5 The Guangdong Land Holdings Limited (www.gdland.com.hk)

The Guangdong Land Holdings Limited (GDLAND), with its headquarters in Hong Kong, is listed on The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited, and is a subsidiary of GDH Limited, which is Guangdong Province’s largest conglomerate operating outside Mainland China.


The principal business of GDLAND is property development and investment, including but not limited to the development and operational management of the innovative commercial real estate, urban complex and industrial business complex. As the strategic arm of GDH Limited, GDLAND engages in the business development of commercial real estate, as well as the projects of urban and industrial complex.


GDLAND’s flagship project, namely the “Buxin Project”, is planned to become the biggest and most advanced jewellery mart in the world, including a large-scale jewellery trading and exhibition centre along with other facilities, with a lot size of over 87,000 square metres and the construction scale (floor area) is expected to be more than 700,000 square metres. The Buxin Project, which is located in the Buxin area of Luohu district in Central Shenzhen, close to the Shuibei Gold and Jewellery Base, is expected to develop the area into one of the most influential gold and jewellery trading and exchange platforms in China and around the world.


4.      About UBM Asia (www.ubmasia.com)

Owned by UBM plc listed on the London Stock Exchange, UBM Asia is the largest trade show organiser in Asia and the largest commercial organiser in China, India and Malaysia. Established with its headquarters in Hong Kong and subsidiary companies across Asia and in the US, UBM Asia has a strong global presence in 24 major cities with 30 offices and 1,300 staff.


With a track record spanning over 30 years, UBM Asia operates in 20 market sectors with 230 dynamic face-to-face exhibitions and high-level professional conferences, 23 targeted trade publications, 20 round-the-clock online products 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, Guzhen and Shenzhen, where we organise 90 exhibitions and conferences. In ASEAN, UBM Asia operates from its offices in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Vietnam and the Philippines with over 40 events in this region. UBM India teams in Mumbai, New Delhi, Bengaluru and Chennai organise 40 exhibitions and conferences every year across the country.