Industry veteran Jonathan Kendall is stepping down from his role as head of De Beers Group Industry Services and Forevermark Operations after 20 years with the business, De Beers Group announced recently.
According to De Beers, Kendall has played an integral role in leading the evolution of many of De Beers Group’s downstream activities since he joined the company in 2001, holding a variety of roles during this time.
His key achievements include helping to modernise the company’s approach to building stronger relationship with clients, launching the original Forevermark programme in 2005 and undertaking major marketing campaigns to support De Beers Group’s global leadership position.
In recent years, Kendall led the development and launch of what is today known as De Beers Group Industry Services and the Institute of Diamonds, offering world-class diamond grading, testing, synthetic detection technology and education services to the diamond trade. He also oversaw the building of two globally recognised diamond laboratories in Antwerp and Surat.
Following Kendall’s departure by end-2020, Jamie Clark will take over management of De Beers diamond laboratories while Emanuela Morando will continue to head up client management and business development. Jodine Perrin will continue to lead the company’s consumer and trade education services programme.
In another development, De Beers has restructured major components of its business by combining its London-based Consumer & Brands and Corporate Affairs teams into a new single unit - Brands & Consumer Markets - to build purpose-led brands.
The new unit is tasked to develop the group’s brands and expand its consumer businesses,by engaging consumers in both the beauty of a De Beers diamond and the beauty of its story.
Stephen Lussier, previously executive vice president of Consumer & Brands, is now executive vice president, Consumer Markets and will continue to serve as chairman of De Beers Jewellers and of Forevermark. He is accountable for the long-term vision and strategy of De Beers’ consumer businesses.
David Prager, previously executive vice president of Corporate Affairs, was named executive vice president and chief brand officer of De Beers. He will oversee marketing of De Beers and its brands and lead the group’s commitment to create a positive impact in the lives of people and the health of the planet through De Beers’ Building Forever sustainability framework.
De Beers likewise announced other major appointments to its Brand Leadership team: Katie Fergusson as senior vice president, Sustainable Impact; Feriel Zerouki as senior vice president, Corporate Affairs; Colby Shergalis as senior vice president, Brand Marketing; and Martha Velando as senior vice president, Global Marketing.
The London-based brand team will work closely with Céline Assimon, CEO of De Beers Jewellers, and Nancy Liu, CEO of Forevermark.
Bruce Cleaver, CEO of De Beers Group, commented, “As new generations of consumers look to express not just their love, but their values, through the purchases they make for others and the things they buy for themselves, the transformation and appointments we have announced reflect our conviction that compelling and meaningful brands will shape the future of diamonds."