Signet Jewelers will become the first retailer to join De Beers Group's end-to-end diamond blockchain pilot programme, known as Tracr.
Tracr aims to complete the first digital link all the way from diamond production through to retail.
It is being developed by De Beers, with support from BCG Digital Ventures, and is expected to launch later this year.
A Signet project team will work alongside the Tracr team to ensure the platform meets the needs of the jewellery manufacturing and retail sectors, with the partnership initially focusing on the tracking of diamond jewellery, and expanding the pilot’s scope to cater for smaller-sized goods.
“Tracr is focused on bringing the benefits of blockchain technology to the full diamond value chain – providing consumers with confidence, the trader with increased efficiency and lower costs, and lenders to the industry with greater visibility,” De Beers CEO Bruce Cleaver said in a statement.
Signet Jewelers CEO Virginia Drosos commented that responsible sourcing of diamonds has always been an integral part of Signet’s corporate ethos, and this will be further strengthened through its cooperation with Tracr.
“We are joining the Tracr pilot because we believe the project not only has strong potential to facilitate increased transparency and confidence within the industry, but it can also foster much-needed digital transformation,” she said.
It is intended that a digital certificate created by Tracr for each diamond registered on the platform, storing its key attributes and transactions, will enable retailers to provide consumers with confidence that their diamond is natural, conflict-free and has been tracked across the value chain.
In early May, De Beers announced that it had successfully tracked 100 high-value diamonds along the value chain on Tracr, marking the first time a diamond’s journey has been digitally tracked from mine to retail.