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Clare Appleyard was fascinated by geology and the inner workings of the earth from an early age, and pursued a Masters Degree in Geology from the University of Cape Town, completing a thesis on the geological chemistry of minerals associated with diamonds.

As the recipient of a De Beers bursary, it was natural that a career at De Beers would follow and Clare immersed herself in the diamond research section of De Beers, in Johannesburg where she spent 6½ years investigating the science and geology of diamonds, together with the geochronology (scientific dating) of diamond-bearing rocks.

Following her time at De Beers, Clare moved to fellow mining giant Anglo American, gaining valuable experience in the platinum industry, before resigning her position to pursue a business and career in the cut and polished side of the diamond industry.

In 2007, Clare co-founded Katannuta Diamonds, a company specializing in the manufacture of bespoke diamond and precious gemstone jewellery, with a strong emphasis on consumer education and empowerment. Katannuta Diamonds has a reputation within the industry for exceptional workmanship, competitive prices and outstanding service in the engagement ring and wedding ring market.

In 2009, Clare was approached by one of South Africa's largest in-bound tour operators to provide educational gemstone talks to a high-end American tour group company. These 35-minute lectures have proved to be a resounding success and 2017 will be the 8th consecutive year that Clare has provided this service to the tour groups.

Not only do these talks educate clientele on South Africa's rich diamond heritage, they also empower the guests with knowledge to apply when buying diamonds and gemstones, in addition to providing an opportunity to purchase and invest in South African diamonds.

Over the years Clare has been consulted as a diamond expert for publications ranging from career guidance to FNB's Private Life magazine, where she consulted regarding investment diamonds for FNB's private banking clients.