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Panel of Expert Judges Reconvenes for JNA Awards 2017

2017-02-22 17:57
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HONG KONG, Feb. 22, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- The annual JNA Awards celebrates its sixth year with a stellar panel of judges consisting of five distinguished experts from the jewellery and gemstone industry.

(From top left, clockwise) Albert Cheng, Advisor to the World Gold Council, Far East (WGC); James Courage, former Chief Executive of Platinum Guild International (PGI); Lin Qiang, President and Managing Director of the Shanghai Diamond Exchange (SDE); Yasukazu Suwa, Chairman of Suwa & Son, Inc in Japan; and Nirupa Bhatt, Managing Director of Gemological Institute of America (GIA) India and the Middle East.
(From top left, clockwise) Albert Cheng, Advisor to the World Gold Council, Far East (WGC); James Courage, former Chief Executive of Platinum Guild International (PGI); Lin Qiang, President and Managing Director of the Shanghai Diamond Exchange (SDE); Yasukazu Suwa, Chairman of Suwa & Son, Inc in Japan; and Nirupa Bhatt, Managing Director of Gemological Institute of America (GIA) India and the Middle East.

Organised by JNA, the JNA Awards recognises and honours companies and individuals that have demonstrated excellence, innovation and outstanding business performance to shape the growth and development of Asia's jewellery industry.

An independent panel of industry leaders representing key sectors of the jewellery trade is carefully selected to ensure that the judging process is independent, robust, transparent and intellectually rigorous.

The judges for JNA Awards 2017 are:

  • Albert Cheng, Advisor to the World Gold Council and former Managing Director, Far East (WGC) 
  • James Courage, former Chief Executive of Platinum Guild International (PGI) and former Chairman of the Responsible Jewellery Council
  • Lin Qiang, President and Managing Director of the Shanghai Diamond Exchange (SDE)
  • Nirupa Bhatt, Managing Director of the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) in India and the Middle East
  • Yasukazu Suwa, Chairman of Suwa & Son, Inc

Letitia Chow, Founder of JNA, Director of Business Development - Jewellery Group at UBM Asia, and Chair of the JNA Awards Judging Panel, remarked, "The judging panel is an integral part of making the JNA Awards an authoritative, fair and successful event. These individuals have been chosen not only for their expertise in the jewellery and gemstone industry, but also for their dedication and contribution to the advancement of the sector."

"Although we saw a seven-year low for jewellery demand in 2016, we have witnessed the resiliency of the jewellery sector - thanks to the gradual corporatization of family-owned companies, and the adoption of state-of-the-art management know-how and IT application by enterprise owners and their teams to their manufacturing, retailing and marketing processes. We encourage these forward thinkers and innovators to share their best business practices through the JNA Awards," added Albert Cheng, Advisor to the WGC and former Managing Director of WGC - Far East.

James Courage commented, "It has been a privilege and a responsibility to have been involved in the judging of the JNA Awards for the last five years since its inception. I have observed increased levels of investment and engagement by our industry in developing employees, improving environmental considerations, raising standards and making technical advancements, which are all well-covered by the focus of the JNA awards." Courage is currently a consultant to the jewellery industry, having recently retired from his roles as Chairman of the Responsible Jewellery Council and Chief Executive of PGI.

"It's my honour and pleasure to serve as a judge and contribute to the JNA Awards for the sixth consecutive year. In the past five years, I've witnessed marked progress in terms of the quality of participants, the attention it has attracted, and the positive influence it has wielded in the industry as a whole. I believe that the JNA Awards will continue to surprise, delight and impress me in new ways," added Lin Qiang, President and Managing Director of the SDE.

Nirupa Bhatt, Managing Director of GIA for India and the Middle East, said, "Year after year, the JNA Awards has grown in stature and become synonymous with recognising excellence in the jewellery and gemstone industry. This platform encourages businesses to share their best practices that contribute towards accelerating the pace of innovation in the industry. It has been my honour to be associated with JNA Awards since 2013."

Yasukazu Suwa, Chairman of Suwa & Son, Inc, added, "I am grateful to share the same passion and commitment with my fellow judges in promoting best business practices in the jewellery and gemstone industry. We hope that this year's awards will continue to see more qualified entries and first-time entrants joining our community."

JNA Awards 2017 is supported by Headline Partners Rio Tinto Diamonds and Chow Tai Fook (CTF), together with Shanghai Diamond Exchange (SDE), Guangdong Gems & Jade Exchange, and Guangdong Land Holdings Limited (GDLAND) as Honoured Partners.

A complete description of the award categories, as well as a detailed explanation of the judging criteria and entry rules, may be reviewed after registering online. Entry submission will start in early March and the deadline for the submission of nominations is on 5 May 2017.

For more information, visit http://www.JNAawards.com or contact:

JNA Awards Marketing 
UBM Asia (Hong Kong
+852-2516-2184
marketing@jnaawards.com

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, coloured gemstone, jewellery manufacturing, and equipment and supplies sectors.

2. About the Headline Partners

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

Rio Tinto Diamonds is one of the world's leading diamond producers and operates a globally integrated mine-to-market diamond business. For over three decades, the company has been an important participant in the international diamond market with two world-class underground diamond mines in Australia (Argyle) and Canada (Diavik).

Rio Tinto's diamond sales and marketing activities, headquartered in Antwerp, Belgium, are supported by a network of representative offices in Hong Kong, Mumbai and New York.

Rio Tinto believes in supporting consumer confidence in its diamonds and plays an active role in addressing key industry issues surrounding product integrity and sustainable development. It is a leading supporter of the Kimberley Process, as well as a founding member of the Responsible Jewellery Council and the Diamond Producers Association.

2.2 Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group Limited (www.chowtaifook.com)

Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group Limited (Stock Code: 1929) was listed on the Main Board of The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong in December 2011.

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 U.S. premium diamond brand, in August 2014 has further underpinned the Group's stature as a diamond expert in the industry.

The Group boasts an extensive retail network comprising over 2,300 POS of Chow Tai Fook and Hearts On Fire spanning more than 500 cities in Greater China, Singapore, Malaysia, Korea and the United States, as well as a fast growing e-tail network through operating its Chow Tai Fook e-shop and other e-tail accounts on major online shopping platforms.

The Group's sophisticated vertically integrated business model provides it with an effective and tight control over the entire operation chain from raw material procurement, design, production, to marketing and sales through its extensive distribution channels.

3. About the Honoured Partners

3.1 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.

3.2 The Guangdong Gems & Jade Exchange (http://en.gdgje.com/)

Founded in February 2016, the Guangdong Gems & Jade Exchange is one of two provincial jewellery trading platforms authorised by the People's Government of Guangdong Province.

Aggregating resources from key industrial hubs across Guangdong including Guangzhou, Pingzhou of Foshan, Yangmei of Jieyang and Sihui of Zhaoqing, the Guangdong Gems & Jade Exchange joins hands with world-renowned jewellery brands in setting up an international supply chain integrated service platform that offers a secure and convenient trading experience for domestic and overseas jewellers.

The Guangdong Gems & Jade Exchange is set to benefit China's jewellery industry in a variety of areas, such as the promotion of a healthier and more balanced international division of labour, foreign trade development, cross-border resource management and consumer market growth. As part of this effort, it will take full advantage of the base and influence of Guangdong's jewellery industry and the benefits stemming from the Belt and Road Initiative to establish linkages with national and global gemstone and jewellery markets.

3.3 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, Thailand 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 32 offices and 1,300 staff.

With a track record spanning over 30 years, UBM Asia operates in 19 market sectors with 230 events, 28 targeted trade publications, 18 round-the-clock online products for over 2,000,000 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 12 offices in the major cities in mainland China, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hangzhou, Guzhen and Shenzhen, where we organise 90 events. In ASEAN, UBM Asia operates from its offices in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Vietnam and the Philippines with 70 events in this region. UBM India teams in Mumbai, New Delhi, Bengaluru and Chennai organise over 20 events every year across the country.

UBM Asia was awarded "Asia's Most Reliable Trade Show Organizer Award" in Hong Kong's Most Valuable Companies Awards (HKMVCA) 2016.

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Source: JNA
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