South Africa has its first diamonds discovered in 1867, when diamonds were discovered near Kimberley. and this rich diamond source secured South Africa's number one spot as the world's leading diamonds producer in the mid-twentieth century.
Famous De Beers company was also founded in Kimberley (known also as "Diamond city") as Cecil Rhodes founded this well known company in 1888. De Beers is still the most influential diamond force in South Africa.
In 2003 South Africa produced above 11 Mct of diamonds. the most important mine is Venetia Diamond mine in the Limpopo province in South Africa, which is famous for producing some of the best quality diamonds in the world since its opening in 1992. Venetia Diamond mine alone produced in 2005 almost 7,2 Mct of diamonds and it employs about 1000 people. This is also first mine in the world to achieve ISO 9002 quality management certification. This is open-pit mine that is expected to carry on for the next 20 years.
South Africa is also home of prestigious Diamond Education College which provides internationally recognized diplomas and trains its students in rough and polished diamond evaluation and rough diamond marking.