Two long-standing organisations with similar origins will soon become closer with the Gemological Institute of America (GIA) absorbing the diamond grading operations of the American Gem Society (AGS).
The AGS is a trade association of retail jewellers, suppliers, and other industry members, founded in 1934 by Robert Shipley.
Three years prior to the establishment of the AGS, Shiply founded the GIA as an education and research facility dedicated to the study of gemstones.
The two organisations announced last week that the AGS Laboratories’ intellectual property, technology, research staff, and Las Vegas facility will become part of the GIA.
AGS Laboratories will continue to provide services until the end of 2022 before the integration is finalised.
“This consequential agreement brings AGS and GIA even closer, driving our future with 90 years of shared history and elevating our founders’ vision,” said AGS CEO Katherine Bodoh.
“AGS and GIA each have their unique perspective and expertise, and a steadfast focus on advancing ethics, standards and education in the gem and jewellery industry.”
GIA president Susan Jacques echoed this sentiment.
“By harnessing each other’s strengths to move forward boldly, consumers will be better protected and we will ensure the longevity of the Shipleys’ vision,” she said
According to the AGS, the development of new innovative products to help consumers and the trade at large will be a priority in 2023 and beyond.
AGS Laboratories was formed in 1996 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of the American Gem Society.
*CORRECTION: An earlier version of this article (21 October) featured errors regarding the integration of AGS Laboratories into the GIA. Jeweller thanks the GIA and AGS for quickly bringing the issue to light so the error could be rectified.