“Manmade diamonds will be with us in many different ways that we can only begin to imagine right now … .”
– CEO, Apollo, a synthetic diamond manufacturer (CNETNews.com, February 14, 2007)
The synthetic diamond industry was on the radar of diamond giant DeBeers as a potential disruptive technology. In 2009, after years of concerted efforts to improve its tarnished reputation as the industry monopolist, DeBeers was wondering how it should respond to the threat.
To explore strategic issues that arise in markets for status goods; appreciate how a major player’s strategic moves can transform a market; and examine the source of diamonds’ value to consumers, and how that value can be shaped through DeBeers’s strategic choices.