GREENVILLE, SC, Sept. 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ – Scio Diamond Technology Corporation (OTCBB: SCIO) (hereinafter “Scio” or the “company”) today announced that it has entered into product specific Joint Venture Agreement to produce Type lla, Single Crystal CVD diamond for a specific gemstone market.
Scio Diamond has signed a Joint Venture agreement as the technology and delivery provider and has teamed with two partners who bring more than 75 years collective experience in the gemstone industry giving the consortium financial strength while allowing the production to be vertically integrated.
The joint ventures’ facility will be located in China, and will be initially fitted out with 100 Scio designed diamond-growing reactors as well as support equipment, such as lasers operation and HPHT pressing machines. The facility will have the capability to expand to 400 diamond-growing reactors over the next 2 years. Scio’s current production technology has the produces 32,000 plus rough carats of diamond annually with its 10 growers. This is greater than a 50% improvement over 1-year ago. The Joint Venture will be employing the next level of technology at its outset, which will increase production by an additional 50%.
Scio is providing its patented CVD Diamond Technology to the Joint Venture through a licensing agreement that provides Scio with both an equity position and licensing revenues. Scio’s partners are responsible for providing the Joint Venture funding as well as associated technologies. “This venture affirms the acceptance of Scio’s technology platform and our proven ability to mass produce quality diamond, by two of the industry leaders in their respective fields”, says Michael McMahon, Scio’s CEO.
The new entity is estimated to begin producing diamond in the summer of 2014. “This is a significant time in the history of Scio Diamond”, said McMahon. “We have spent our first year of operations focused on the mass-production of high quality diamond, which has now been recognized”.
“The partners of Scio Diamond in this venture are showing by their investment, relationships and experience that they have tremendous confidence in this approach. The three of us have worked on this deal since April of this year”, as we have tested the market, the product, the improvement to the product, the ability to mass-produce and together are convinced of its potential”, added McMahon.
From now until the first of the year, the JV team will be engineering and installing the infrastructure of the China facility. Most importantly they will be hiring and training the technical staff. Much of the upfront training will be taking place in Greenville, SC, Scio’s headquarters. “One of the challenges, is taking our very detailed processes and procedures, translating them and making sure they are totally understood, prior to production startup”, say McMahon.
This joint venture clearly shows the confidence of two of the industry’s leaders in Scio’s vision to become the leader in the mass-production of high quality type lla single crystal diamond.
Scio employs a patent-protected chemical vapor deposition process to produce high-quality, single-crystal diamond in a controlled laboratory setting, with such diamond referred to as “lab-grown” diamond. This lab-grown diamond has chemical, physical and optical properties identical to “earth-mined” diamond. The company’s manufacturing process enables it to produce high-quality, high-purity, single-crystal colorless, near colorless and fancy colored diamond.
Scio’s technology offers the flexibility to produce lab-grown diamond in size, color and quality combinations that are very rare in earth-mined diamond. Additionally, Scio produces diamond that has the structural, optical and electronic characteristics for industrial, medical and semiconductor applications.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements that may involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Scio to be materially different from future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by any forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements, which involve assumptions and describe future plans, strategies and expectations of the company, are generally identifiable by use of the words “may,” “will,” “should,” “could,” “would,” “forecast,” “potential,” “continue,” “contemplate,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “believe,” “intend,” “or “project” or the negative of these words or other variations on these words or comparable terminology. These forward-looking statements are based on assumptions that may be incorrect, and there can be no assurance that these projections included in these forward-looking statements will come to pass. Actual results of the company could differ materially from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements as a result of various factors. Except as required by applicable laws, the company has no obligation to update publicly any forward-looking statements for any reason, even if new information becomes available or other events occur in the future.