Monthly Archives: November 2015

1,111 carat diamond recovered by Lucara: the largest for more than a century

LARGEST WHITE ROUGH DIAMOND FOUND IN BOTSWANA IN RECENT TIMES

lucara diamond image www.worldwidediamonds.info

It was an extraordinary feat by Lucara Diamond Corp. having discovered a 1,111 carat gem quality, Type IIa diamond. The discovery of the magnificent stone, which originated from the south lobe of Lucara’s Karowe Mine, makes it the discovery of the world’s second largest gem quality diamond ever recovered and the largest ever to be recovered through a modern processing facility. The stone measures 65mm x 56mm x 40mm in size and is the largest ever to be recovered in Botswana.

lucara diamond in hands image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Lucara is a high quality diamond producer with assets in Botswana. The 1,111 carat stone was recovered by the newly installed Large Diamond Recovery (LDR) XRT machines.

William Lamb, President and CEO, commented, “This historic diamond recovery puts Lucara and the Karowe mine amongst a select number of truly exceptional diamond producers. The significance of the recovery of a gem quality stone larger than 1,000 carats, the largest for more than a century and the continued recovery of high quality stones from the south lobe, cannot be overstated. Our focus on mining the south lobe, which is delivering value beyond expectation, has been perfectly timed with the commissioning of our recent plant modifications, enabling the recovery of these large, high quality exceptional diamonds.”

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Henry Sapiecha

Sotheby’s Acquires “Pink Star” Diamond after Buyer Defaults

Published on Feb 28, 2014

Sotheby’s acquires the “Pink Star” diamond, which fetched a world-record price in November, after its buyer couldn’t pay and defaulted.

Sotheby’s said it acquired the “Pink Star” diamond, which had fetched a world-record price in November, after its buyer couldn’t pay and defaulted.

New York-based diamond cutter Isaac Wolf outbid three rivals last November to pay 76.3 million Swiss francs ($83.02 million) for the flawless pink diamond in an auction guaranteed by Sotheby’s.

In a post-earnings conference call, the auction house said it reversed the related commission revenue as a result of the buyer default and recorded the pink diamond in inventory at a value of about $72 million.

“We are currently in discussions with the buyer, while also considering other alternatives,” Patrick McClymont, Sotheby’s CFO said on the call with analysts. “In the meantime, we are quite comfortable with our valuation, and see real value in owning the diamond at this price.”

The world-record price for the diamond, which had been renamed “The Pink Dream” after Wolf acquired it, had included a “buyer’s premium,” or commission fees. The diamond’s pre-sale estimate was $61 million.

The 59.60-carat Pink Star was the main attraction at Sotheby’s November jewels sale in Geneva, which was the highest jewelry sale total for a single auction in history – $199.5 million.

On Thursday (February 27), Sotheby’s reported weaker-than-expected quarterly profit, hurt by higher operating expenses and increased competition. The auctioneer reported earnings of $1.30 per share that missed analysts’ estimates of $1.40 per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Billionaire hedge fund manager Daniel Loeb mounted a proxy fight with the goal of winning three board seats after the auction house’s promise to return $450 million to shareholders failed to appease activist investors.

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Henry Sapiecha

Hong Kong Tycoon Grabs $48.5Mn Blue Moon Diamond for Daughter at Sotheby’s Auction

Published on Nov 12, 2015

An exceptionally large blue diamond sold Wednesday for 48.6 million Swiss francs ($48.5 million) – a record price for any jewel at auction, Sotheby’s said, culminating two Geneva auctions in which a convicted Hong Kong tycoon, Joseph Lau, bought rare coloured diamonds for his daughter.

Hong-Kong-billionaire-tycoon

The 12.03-carat ‘Blue Moon’ diamond, set in a ring, was said to be among the largest known fancy vivid blue diamonds and was the showpiece gem at the Sotheby’s jewelry auction.

A packed room broke into applause after the hammer came down at a price of 43.2 million Swiss francs, excluding fees – within the pre-auction estimate range of about 34 to 54 million francs.

The Blue Moon – so-called in reference to its rarity, playing off the expression “once in a blue moon” – topped the previous record of $46.2 million set five years ago by the Graff Pink, Sotheby’s said.

The diamond also set a new record of more than $4 million per carat, capping the daylong high-end jewelry sale that reaped roughly $140 million.

Blue diamonds are formed when boron is mixed with carbon when the gem is created.

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Henry Sapiecha

‘Blue Moon’ diamond sells for world record $67.8 million

The Blue Moon Diamond in Geneva last week. Photo: AP

The rare Blue Moon diamond. The 12.03 carat blue diamond is the largest cushion shaped fancy vivid blue diamond ever appear at auction image www.worldwidediamonds.info

Geneva:  The rare and flawless “Blue Moon” diamond” has sold for 48.6 million Swiss francs ($67.8 million) – to a Hong Kong buyer, setting a world record for a gemstone at auction, Sotheby’s said.

The cushion-shaped diamond, mounted on a ring, has the top grading of fancy vivid blue and weighs 12.03 carats. It had a pre-sale estimate of $US35 million to $US55 million ($49 million to $77 million)

The Blue Moon Diamond in Geneva image www.worldwidediamonds.info

The rare Blue Moon diamond. The 12.03 carat blue diamond is the largest cushion shaped fancy vivid blue diamond ever appear at auction. Photo: AP

“It is a new record price for any gemstone and per carat,” David Bennett, worldwide chairman of Sotheby’s international jewellery division, told a packed showroom in Geneva that erupted into applause.

The Hong Kong buyer promptly renamed it “The Blue Moon of Josephine”, Mr Bennett told reporters, noting that it had also set a world record for any jewel at more than $US4 million per carat.

At rival Christie’s on Tuesday, a large diamond of a rare pink hue fetched 28.725 million Swiss francs ($40.1 million).

Christie’s said that the stone, named “The Sweet Josephine” by the Hong Kong-based Chinese client who bought it, set a world record for any pink diamond ever offered at auction.  The same buyer was believed to have bought both star lots at the semi-annual sales in the Swiss city.

“For me the Blue Moon was always the blue diamond of my career,” Mr Bennett said. “I’ve never seen a more beautiful stone – its shape, colour and purity. It’s a magical stone.”

The previous record was held by the Graff Pink of 24.78 carats, sold by Sotheby’s for $US46.2 million in November 2010.

The blue diamond stone was found in South Africa’s famed Cullinan mine in January 2014. The seller was New York-based jeweller Cora International, according to Sotheby’s.

The distinctive blue colour in diamonds is attributed to trace amounts of the element boron in the crystal structure.

Royal jewels, coloured gemstones, and designer pieces by Van Cleef & Arpels, Cartier, and Harry Winston were among 410 lots that found new owners, bringing in $US139 million.

A fancy vivid purple-pink, pear-shaped diamond ring sold for 13.9 million Swiss francs($19.4 million), the second-highest lot of the night.

A 8.48 carat Burmese ruby and diamond ring that belonged to the late Maria-Jose, the last Queen of Italy, was stranded at 5.2 million Swiss francs ($7.23 million), drawing gasps as it failed to meet its reserve price set by the seller.

A Cartier diamond and pearl tiara that survived Germany’s sinking of the Lusitania cruise liner 100 years ago, along with its Canadian owner Marguerite Lady Allan, whose two daughters perished, went for $US800,000 in heated bidding, doubling the low end of its estimate.

A 15.20 carat fancy orange-pink diamond pendant owned by former James Bond actor Sean Connery fetched more than 4 million Swiss francs ($5.58 million), tripling its estimate.

“Overall, it was an extraordinary evening,” Mr Bennett said.

Reuters

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Henry Sapiecha