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While the world knows him as a business tycoon and the face of Rosy Blue, he says he is still the same old boy from Palanpuri, who was handheld into the business by his father and brother and who learn the trade from people, situations and experiences. Know more of him as you read…
By: Diamond World News Service
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Aug 20 2012 11:36AM
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Reference: 7190  

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Life seems to have come full circle for Dilip Mehta, Chief Executive Officer, Rosy Blue. A look at the past speaks about his debut in the industry, when he chose to follow family values of unity, bonding and community and dropped out of college to accompany his friends. No matter, how significant or trivial the decision was, the important thing is that it changed the course of his life and this college drop-out from a close-knit humble Gujarati family, went on to establish a diamond empire with offices in 15 countries in four continents and business connections all around the globe.

Mehta is a man, who loves to sort through diamonds, listen to inspiring stories, has firm belief in family values and takes time out for philanthropy. In appreciation of his work, in 2006, Mehta was bestowed with the Baronship by His Majesty King Albert II of Belgium. Ask him, what more he wants from life, and he says with a smile, “Just more time to spend with family.”

Mehta was one of five Palanpuri boys in Bhavan’s College in Mumbai in the mid-1960s. Unlike his friends, he worked hard and received good grades, to be in the top 10 per cent of the class. However, when nemesis caught up and they were asked to leave the college, during the second quarterly examination, Mehta’s sense of loyalty and bonding with friends and community, compelled him to drop out of college, which changed the course of his life.

Mehta was the youngest in the family of modest means. His parents were hard working people, who worked long hours and ran their life on tight budgets. Yet, spared no efforts to help look after the wider circles of greater family and even supported the community. “Family bonding was always their core vision,” reminisces Mehta. So, even though his family was shocked at Mehta’s decision to drop out of college, they rallied around and took a practical view. The entire family was involved with diamond manufacturing. His eldest brother, Arun Kumar had recently started a small business of diamond trading from a humble office and workshop at the time, and Mehta was expected to join the business.

Looking back, the tycoon says, “It is good to be the youngest in the family. I grew up with my siblings taking care of me. I received great counseling and they tolerated my mistakes. I have been blessed with great brothers and a sister.”
Within a month of leaving college, Mehta was sent to Surat, which was then emerging as a growth centre for diamond cutting. So, without any formal training, he started to work in diamond manufacturing in 1965. The next five were the foundation years, as he learned about the intricacies of diamond cleaving and cutting. From other cleavers and polishers, Mehta learned rough assortment and preparation in the dry, dusty city of Surat.

“From my days in Surat (1965-1970), I learned just about everything that was needed to manufacture. At that time there was no formal training available, like we have today including GIA, HRD and other grading schools. My parents and brothers are my teachers,” Mehta says.

His father taught him about polished assortments, while his second brother, Harshadbhai Mehta taught him diamond manufacturing systematically. He learnt of sales and trading techniques from his eldest brother Arunbhai Mehta. “I was lucky be born in a family that taught me the important values of respect, self-reliance and equality with the most important lesson being on the benefits of unity,” Mehta says.

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