The London Diamond Bourse (LDB) held an Extraordinary General Meeting on Thursday, 3rd November where the future of the organisation was discussed openly with all members present.
The meeting was attended by members from all parts of the trade including workshops, specialist insurers, SME and major diamond dealers.
The Council of Management pledged to continue its as yet unsuccessful search to find a viable option for the bourse to remain located in or around Hatton Garden. It was stressed that with a lease ending in July 2019, it would be irresponsible not to look at future options, which could include a move out of the area.
A particular focus of discussions was on the reliance of local businesses on proximity to each other for continuity of work flow and the problems the local industry faces due to escalating rents and rates.
A resolution was presented for members and in an unprecedented mov , the ballot remained opened for a week – giving time for members to consider their vote fully.
The LDB said in a statement that 92% of those voting were in favour of the Council of Management continuing discussions with outside agencies to secure premises that may include a world-class jewellery hub in a placemaking scheme.
Chief operating officer, Victoria McKay, said: “The Council of Management are not public facing as they are all working members of everyday Hatton Garden. I have not been instructed to make official comment before now as they felt morally obliged to consult with our members in the first instance, and seek a mandate to continue with their long standing efforts to find a way forward.
“LDB Council is on record as saying we would prefer to stay in our historic home but we are running out of options, as are other businesses around us causing our wonderful industry to rapidly become fragmented.
“An organisation invested in the area needs to make a stand and be prepared to go into talks with outside parties, who look at us and the community around us, as an authentic asset with great value.
“We only ask that the jewellery and diamond community keep their minds open to understanding what a move en masse could mean for the trade. The possibilities of the narrative surrounding a move could be a huge catalyst for the future of the industry. Hatton Garden’s biggest strength could be that if we stand together, we could earn ourselves a world-class jewellery hub which will provide a secure future for us and the industry.”
The LDB has created a new email address for any business or individual who would like to make enquiries or be kept informed about the move, and said it welcomes contact from interested parties who would like to discuss preserving the future of our trade in anyway whatsoever.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org