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WEBINAR PriceScope Webinar Series - Avi Levy of IGI

John Pollard

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In The Loupe, Nov 18, 2021
Guest: Avi Levy, President of IGI North America


Now available on PriceScope's YouTube channel.

 

Karl_K

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Sir John, any word on a video tour of the lab?
 

John Pollard

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In The Loupe - Follow-Up:

Answers to Qs we didn't get to from Avi Levy.

Q: Why do you issue split grades on mounted goods?

This is a great question. Consumers and jewelers expressed a desire for third party assessment of finished jewelry over 20+ years ago. IGI then developed jewelry grading procedures with important stipulations to verify the jewelry being produced. First, unless stones are graded prior to mounting the split grading system is applied to ensure our lab’s assessment is not overstated or understated. That’s the main answer. Second, since the gemstones are partially covered, we have developed proprietary methodology in order to account for the color of metal and its influence, the spacing of stones, type of setting, etc. to ensure consistent reporting. We’ve now been doing it for more than 30 years.

Q: Does IGI grade more diamonds than GIA?

When it comes to full diamond reports and dossiers, GIA grades more loose stones. When you combine the natural and lab grown diamonds we see loose, along with everything in mounted jewelry, I believe we see much more.

Q: Are you seeing a slowdown in supply of LGDs from China due to the coal shortages?

I understand coal is needed in China for many of those growers to fuel their LGD plants and presses but I am not able to correlate a downturn in volume to coal shortages. What I can tell you is that the LGD jewelry market is in competition with other markets that consume LGD for use in electronics, technology, medical, etc. I would hope that as our industry continues to grow so will supply.

Q: What is IGI USA turnaround time on Jewelry Appraisal or Identification? What is IGI turnaround time on loose diamond or gemstone grading?

Turn around time varies. We do normally aim for a 3-5 day turnaround on Jewelry items but this depends on the time of year, and quantities. When it comes to loose we try for a 3-7 day turnaround, again depends on timing and quantities. With all that said, we do honor rush requests for bulk orders, as well as the fast moving Ecommerce side of the business, and do our best to fulfill as quickly as possible.

Q: Will IGI grade a Lightbox lab grown diamond? Does it need to be removed from the mounting for grading?

We do grade Lightbox diamonds. It does not have to be removed, unless a customer specifies they want loose grading (exact) rather than jewelry grading (split).

Q: Do you give tours of your NY laboratory?

Yes, we can arrange private tours. Just contact us several days in advance.

Q: If I want to call and speak with Avi can I? If so how?

Sure, you can speak with me. To arrange this, call 212-753-7100, and ask for me. If I miss the call just leave your information and I will get back to you when practical.

Q: Does IGI print actual H&A photos or just stock photos on this report? https://www.igi.org/hearts-arrows

In traditional H&A markets like China we take photos for each stone because the volume supports it. Demand in North America hasn’t been enough to justify the labor before, but it’s rising fast. We have a plan to adapt in the near future as we continue to update our systems.

Q: What lab grower is making the best cut rounds? Fancy shapes?

It’s hard to single out, as most growers are just trying to get the best yield they can for rounds and fancies at this time.

Q: Where can I find IGI cut grading standards?

This is asked at a good time and Pricescope people are probably well equipped to understand the answer. If we look at assessment, diamond carat, color and clarity systems have existed for 60 plus years with no change. Cut is different. It’s only been graded by all the players since 2006 and there are very different systems used in all the different places. We have used charts since the 1980s which are essentially on par with other big labs but we’re also in the process of refinement and update.

Q: GIA and AGS published different conclusions about brightness, windowing/leakage, contrast and dispersion/DCLR. Does IGI have published studies or a position statement on these beauty components? How are they considered in your cut grade?

We know assessing those components are important, especially for internet buyers. Stay tuned as we have been looking at different analysis methodologies. Ultimately we wish to update with a focus on helping the end consumer while simultaneously educating producers.

- Our thanks to Avi Levy and IGI for the responses.
 

John Pollard

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Sir John, any word on a video tour of the lab?
Only the affirmative comment at the end of the webinar, which was promising.

We can follow up. It would be very interesting, especially the new/advanced tech being used to sort out PGT, etc. With that said, the labs are extremely protective of certain methods and equipment (especially). I expect they'd want to plan and prepare something thoughtful and safe, rather than shooting someone through the facility wearing a GoPro. :)
 
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