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Exelco's Bangkok factory awarded ISO 9001 certificate

Tuesday, 11th January 2005
Source: Jewelry News Asia, January 2005
H&A; Cutting Works Ltd, the diamond manufacturing facility of Exelco NV in Bangkok, Thailand, was awarded the ISO 9001:2000 certificate in October 2004.

This means that the company has adopted quality management principles from the International Organization for Standardization (ISO)

The company's quest for excellence doesn't stop there, however. Given the changing landscape in the diamond industry, where the issue of consumer confidence is now at the forefront, Exelco is working to achieve an SA 8000 certificate from Social Accountability International, a US-based non-government organization that works to improve workplaces and combat sweatshops.

"So far, there are only 400 companies worldwide that have this certificate. It will show that our company is accountable at the social level, as can be seen from the way that we take care of our workers. The people who start working with H&A; are staying with H&A.; I believe that H&A; has a workforce turnaround of only 2 to 3 percent, which is very low. We are paying better salaries than others are paying, yet we can stay competitive and the products coming out are better than those the competition is producing" said Exelco founding partner, Jean Paul Tolkowsky.

Another founding partner, Lior Kunstler, added: "We are doing this for ourselves. I believe that in the next 10 years, with or without certificates, companies that are not socially accountable, those that behave unfairly and do not promote the welfare of their workers, will not succeed."

"At the end of the day, when a couple comes into one of our stores to buy a diamond ring for their engagement, which is one of the most special times in their lives, it is important that the product they buy will make them proud to wear it. That's the whole idea of all our corporate structure: that we buy our diamonds from the right sources, that we produce them in the right way, and that the people that produce them are treated well and are part of our family," said Mr. Tolkowsky.