Sarine Completes Acquisition of Majority Stake in GCAL
The new corporation, GCAL USA LLC, will be part of the Sarine Group and its grading reports will read “GCAL by Sarine.”
The transaction, first announced in January, closed Tuesday.
The new corporation, GCAL USA LLC, will be part of the Sarine Group, though GCAL’s current team—including co-founders Don and Pamela Palmieri and their son Angelo Palmieri, the lab’s chief operating officer—will continue to lead and manage the New York-based lab for at least three years.
After three years, Sarine will have the option to take a 100 percent stake in the lab, per the filing.
All current GCAL employees will become employees of GCAL USA LLC.
Sarine had to let go a “small number” of people because of redundancies but hired for a couple additional positions, Sarine CEO David Block said.
“Overall, the total manpower of the two companies when merged should be more or less the same,” he said.
The company will operate under the brand name “GCAL by Sarine,” which will be the name that appears on grading reports and marketing materials.
The acquisition gives Sarine, which is based in Israel and has a larger presence in Europe and Asia, a foothold in the United States by pairing it with a grading lab that is established in the market.
Don and Pamela founded GCAL in 2001.
“I am thrilled by the opportunities created by this merger,” Block said in a press release. “First and foremost because we have found a partner that shares our values—quality, consistency, reliability, transparency, and customer centricity.
“Secondly, I truly believe the merger will provide the U.S. and other markets a much-needed solution to their pressing concerns for fast, accurate, consistent and efficient grading, along the optional provenance data, critical in these times of geopolitical unrest.”
For GCAL, the merger allows it to expand overseas using Sarine’s artificial intelligence-powered grading instruments without sacrificing quality, an imperative for the lab, GCAL has said.
GCAL still will offer all the same grading services, including its new 8X cut grade, as well as its “Zero Tolerance” 4Cs Consumer Guarantee, which offers consumers money back if the cut, color, clarity and carat weight on their diamond’s GCAL certificate is not accurate.
“We would not have sold the company if we had to abandon the guarantee,” Don said when news of the deal was made public earlier this year.
In the press release, he called the closing of the acquisition “an emotional moment.”
“This merger will support our crusade of many decades to insist on issuing highly reliable quality certificates, which protect our industry and, most importantly, the consumer,” he said.
“We are excited by this opportunity to join forces with Sarine, which has developed a technological solution that enables bringing our stringent quality guarantee to a broader market on an expansive scale.”
Without the ability to instill confidence within the industry and directly to the consumer, a diamond holds very little value.
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