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De Beers’ footprint continues to fade


“Building is not for sale and the company still has a number of teams currently working there”.

WHILE more De Beers employees have been moved out of Kimberley, the company has denied that it no longer has a presence in the city.

De Beers spokesperson Jackie Mapiloko confirmed yesterday that “as part of aligning with our parent company Anglo American, De Beers Group is integrating its Financial Shared Services (FSS) activities based in Kimberley with the Anglo American Global Shared Service (GSS) division”.

“Our FSS employees are currently transitioning to GSS and will benefit from being part of a more global structure – which also includes other Anglo American business units such as Kumba Iron Ore, Coal South Africa and Anglo American Platinum. The integration process will be done in a phased approach leading into the third quarter of 2020. During this time, our employees will remain our first priority to ensure a smooth transition into GSS,” Mapiloko stated.

She did not indicate how many employees would be affected by the transition.

Mapiloko further gave the assurance that the company will continue to have a presence in Kimberley through its business activities namely; De Beers Sightholder Sales South Africa, Micro Diamond Lab, Ecology, De Beers Benefit Society and the De Beers Pension Fund.

Regarding rumours that the Kimberley Head Office in Stockdale Street is on the market, Mapiloko denied this, stating that the “building is not for sale and the company still has a number of teams currently working there”.

In March this year, the company announced that it was selling its Technical Training Centre, which was opened 45 years ago to train artisans.

De Beers spokesperson Innocent Mabusela stated at the time that the company had informed its employees at the Technical Training Centre (TTC) in Kimberley that, following a review of the TTC’s business model, the company had taken a decision to sell the centre to Artisan Training Institute.

At the time, the company added that it had not made any decision to relocate the Sightholder Sales (the former Diamond Sorting House) South Africa out of Kimberley.

The company began its exit from Kimberley in 2015 when it announced that it was selling its oldest diamond mine, Kimberley Mines – ending the more than 125 years of history in the city.

Established in 1881, the company’s roots in the city can be traced to the first diamond discoveries in Kimberley in 1871. Frenzied fortune-hunting miners from around the world raced to the city and this gemstone rush would lead to De Beers becoming the leading diamond miner under Cecil Rhodes and then the Oppenheimer family.

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