Former CEO of De Beers Diamond Trading Company (DTC)
With 30 years’ experience in the diamond industry, Varda Shine – who recently stepped down as CEO of the De Beers Diamond Trading Company (DTC) – is recognised as one of the major powerbrokers in the international jewellery trade. Varda joined De Beers in 1984 and became CEO in 2006. During her tenure as CEO Varda led the business to deliver record sales and profits whilst extending the company’s customer base in India and developing pioneering new approaches to working with De Beers’ government partners in Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Canada. Varda has extensive knowledge and experience of delivering on the expectations of major international clients and working with individuals from all different cultures and backgrounds.
Over the last three years Varda successfully completed the multibillion dollar relocation of the DTC business from London to Botswana in what was one of the largest transfers of economic activity from the northern to the southern hemisphere.
In addition, Varda has overseen the creation of an international network of DTC operations, with joint-venture companies being established with the Governments of Botswana and Namibia, and a wholly owned DTC entity founded in South Africa. These businesses have enabled Botswana, Namibia and South Africa to extract further value from downstream diamond industry activities, while creating direct employment for over five thousand southern African citizens and transferring key diamond-related skills to the region.
Varda Chaired the DTC Botswana and Namibia DTC JV Boards, as well as the Namibia DTC Remuneration Committee. She is also a governing Board member of the Diamond Empowerment Fund (DEF), a non-profit international organisation with the mission of raising money to support education initiatives that develop and empower economically disadvantaged people in Diamond producing nations. Varda is a regular speaker on beneficiation and the diamond industry, most recently at Chatham House.
Varda has completed business and management courses at Templeton College, Oxford, Cranfield and INSEAD. She was the first woman to be awarded honorary lifetime membership of the Israel Diamond Exchange (IDE) and in 2011 received the Women’s Jewellery Association (WJA) Hall of Fame Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2014 Varda was made an honorary member of the London Diamond Bourse in recognition of her services to the diamond industry.