Fawaz Gruosi, al centro, all festa di de Grisogono al Festival di Cannes 2017
Fawaz Gruosi, al centro, alla festa di de Grisogono al Festival di Cannes 2017

Angola say goodbye to de Grisogono


The decisions of the government of Angola intersect with the fate of the Maison de Grisogono ♦ ︎
The jewels are precious. They are an investment as well as an object to wear. So it is not surprising if, occasionally, the economic aspect dominates the aesthetic: in short, sometimes the vile money shines more than a diamond.
This is the case, for example, of the story told by the Bloomberg agency and which concerns the Geneva Maison de Grisogono. It is learned, in fact, that the minority shareholder of the company founded by Fawaz Gruosi is the government of Angola, and in particular Sodiam, a subsidiary of Endiama, the national mining company of the African country. Sodiam, therefore, has announced that it will sell its shareholding in de Grisogono. The decision has nothing to do with de Grisogono’s activity, but is dictated by “reasons of public interest and legality”. According to the American specialized website National Jeweler, de Grisogono is controlled by Sindika Dokolo, husband of Isabel Dos Santos, who is the daughter of former Angolan president Jose Eduardo dos Santos as well as being the richest woman in Africa, according to Forbes magazine.
Change of regime
In short, the newly elected Angolan president Joao Lourenco would like cut Angola from the commercial interests of his predecessor’s family. In fact, it has already removed Isabel Dos Santo from the summit of Sonangol, which is the powerful state oil company of Angola. The story was commented on National Jeweler by de Grisogono’s marketing director, Gianluca Maina, who sent a clarification via e-mail: «After a recent change of leadership, Sodiam, minority shareholder, announced plans to exit as investor in De Grisogono. This decision will have no impact on our majority shareholders who have reconfirmed their continued commitment to our brand and its future and we continue to have strong financial support “.
Public enemy
But the serenity of Fawaz Gruosi risks being disturbed by another obstacle: the negative campaign that leads the gem hunter Yianni Melas from some months. In essence, the explorer claims that de Grisogono does not sufficiently help African populations and for this reason he has implemented a series of protest actions against the Maison de Genève. For exemple, on the occasion of Christie’s auction sale of The Art of de Grisogono, an exceptional necklace with a 163.41 carat D diamond, extracted in Angola. Not even the announcement that 1% of the sale would be donated to Fundação Brilhante, an organization that promotes social change in the areas surrounding the mines in Angola, has been enough to appease Melas. Cosimo Muzzano

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