Just a year ago, Techno Carbon USA jumped into the lab-grown diamond wholesale market in the United States, focusing on selling to independent retail jewelers. As lab-grown diamonds’ popularity grows, Techno Carbon - with a wealth of knowledge and decades of experience in the natural-diamond business - is enjoying early success.
Techno Carbon USA’s founder and President Goldie Shah says he’s already experiencing a growth in competition in “the new choice in diamonds.”
Techno Carbon USA manufactures and sells International Gemological Institute-certified lab-grown diamonds, along with non-certified lab-grown diamonds. Goldie started the business with e-mail and phone orders for solitaires and studs featured in a catalog. Now, with its website up and running, so is business. This past June, the company unveiled its bridal line at the JCK Las Vegas show. “The response is good,” Goldie says, “but our best seller to date is still studs. We are now also carrying other shapes besides rounds, like emerald, oval, pear-shape, radiant, cushion and princess.
“We have more competitors than when we started,” Goldie says, “and all major chains have added this segment to their showcases. Business has picked up as more and more independents are carrying lab-grown. And this is purely because the consumer is asking them for it.”
Based in New York City, Techno Carbon USA also is investing in newspaper and magazine ads, along with participating in trade shows, where company representatives are able to meet their retail customers face to face.
Before Techno Carbon was established in 2015, Goldie was dealing in natural-mined diamonds and jewelry.
“Being involved in a family business, I’ve always been exposed to diamonds and gemstones,” Goldie says. “Since childhood, I was always fascinated with the beauty of a diamond. I picked up my first diamond at the age of 9 in our factory. Then I started learning diamonds at age 17 in Mumbai.” As soon as he finished his studies at age 21, Goldie says, he started traveling abroad and continued his on-the-job diamond education.
“I learned to sort and grade diamonds for the first two years,” Goldie says. “Then I began learning pricing and catering to overseas customers who used to come to India to buy diamonds. I dealt with clients from the United States, Europe and Japan. I traveled to Antwerp, where I did a diamond grading course at HRD, a diamond grading laboratory in Europe, similar to the GIA.”
Why Choose Lab-Grown?
The benefits of lab-grown diamonds are many, Goldie says. They’re eco-friendly, ethical, and less pricey than mined diamonds. They have “the exact same chemical, optical and physical properties of a mined diamond,” according to the company website. “It is every bit a diamond, down to the molecular level,” with the only difference being that Techno Carbon USA’s diamonds “are produced in an environmentally friendly manner. We are able to achieve in a matter of weeks what nature takes millions of years to create.”
Techno Carbon USA says its diamonds are:
- Conflict-free and produced in an ethical manner
- Priced substantially lower than mined diamonds, offering exceptional value
- Kinder to the environment than mined diamonds
- Created to the buyer’s specifications with greater consistency
- All Type IIa, chemically the purest form of a diamond, compared with just 1 percent of mined diamonds
Two methods are used to create the lab-grown diamonds. HPHT, or High Pressure High Temperature, “uses a mechanized process to heat a diamond seed in a pure carbon chamber. Temperatures reaching 1.5 times that of lava, or 1500 Celsius, and pressure reaching the equivalent of one U.S. carrier per square foot, or 1.5 million pounds per square inch. This heating and subsequent cooling process forms a pure carbon diamond.”
The second method is called CVD, or Chemical Vapor Deposition. It “uses a diamond seed from an HPHT-grown diamond, placing it in a carbon-packed chamber. The gases are ionized to allow for carbon modules to adhere to the diamond and slowly crystalize.”
Setting Techno Carbon USA apart from its competitors are “service, availability of goods and consistency as we grow the diamonds ourselves and don’t depend on others,” Goldie says. The diamonds are grown and cut in the company’s facility in Surat, India, then distributed in the United States. With no middle man, the company is able to offer the diamonds at a lower price. Its in-house team produces a wide selection of diamonds in various colors, carat, cut and clarity.