By Ashley Bailey
, Tuesday, June 05, 2007
From GIA, Carlsbad, Calif. – The Gemological Institute of America (GIA) announced that its Board of Governors, here for a biannual governance meeting, has approved plans for GIA to expand its global footprint. The organization will now initiate efforts to strengthen its international presence with new state-of-the-art laboratories and research centers as well as educational facilities in Southeast Asia, southern Africa, and other regions across the globe. In addition, GIA will add diamond grading services to its existing world-class laboratory and research center in Bangkok, Thailand.
According to Ralph Destino, chairman of GIA, expansion is necessary to deliver on GIA’s mission of upholding the highest standards in gems and jewelry. “The plan will allow GIA to address the rapidly growing significance of gemological centers around the world, while also responding to requests from regional government and trade leaders alike for a stronger global presence.”
GIA already operates 14 education facilities, four research centers and three laboratories throughout North America, Asia, and Europe, with an additional education center in Dubai (United Arab Emirates) scheduled for completion next year. According to Donna Baker, president of GIA, the new international expansion plans will allow GIA to bolster its grading, research, and educational offerings in several significant industry centers.
“This milestone announcement comes following intense market analysis and strategizing,” said Baker. “We will focus on offering each geographic market a total presence – complete with education, research, and laboratory operations. Our goal is to meet the growing demands of the world’s expanding markets while retaining our commitment to the highest standards of gemology.”
Each laboratory will be fully staffed to support GIA customers on both a regional and international level. According to Baker, GIA is also looking closely at other major industry centers, beyond Southeast Asia and southern Africa, for further worldwide expansion.
“We have our global strategy defined and we are confident in our ability to deliver on our mission, while maintaining the highest standards of integrity, academics, science, and professionalism,” said Baker.
An independent nonprofit organization, the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) is recognized as the world's foremost authority in gemology. Established in 1931, GIA has translated its expert knowledge into the most respected gemological education available. In 1953, the Institute created the International Diamond Grading System™ which, today, is recognized by virtually every professional jeweler in the world. Through research, education, gemological laboratory services, and instrument development, the Institute is dedicated to ensuring the public trust in gems and jewelry by upholding the highest standards of integrity, academics, science, and professionalism. GIA can be found on the web at http://www.gia.edu/
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