Category Archives: Russia

Alrosa prepared to now auction the most expensive diamond ever polished in Russia

Part of its “Dynasty collection,” consisting in five diamonds polished from a 179-carat rock found in 2015

Russian miner Alrosa  (MCX:ALRS), the world’s top diamond producer by output will auction Wednesday a rare collection of diamonds produced domestically, including the most expensive rock ever polished in the country — a giant 51.4-carat gem.

More than 130 potential buyers have already registered to participate in tomorrow’s online sale of the diamond collection, named after the dynasties of the Romanov, the company said in a statement. That family ruled for more than 300 years before the Russian Revolution.

The largest of all bears the same name as the entire Dynasty collection. It’s a huge, traditional round-cut diamond, whose 2.5 cm (1 inch) diameter is equal in size to the visible part of a human eye.

The five diamonds. (Photo: Alrosa)

Discovered in 2015, the rough version of the diamond was a massive 179-carat gem, found in a mine in the northeast region of Sakha. It was then cut and polished into five smaller gems, named after noble families of the imperial era: Sheremetyev, Orlov, Vorontsov and Usupov.

“There was a good reason to choose the name for the collection, which is connected with Alrosa’s intention to revive the traditions and memory of renowned Russian jewelers famous for their craftsmanship and filigree since Russia’s first cutting and polishing factory founded by Peter I (the Great) early in the 18th century,” the company said.

The 179-carat rough diamond that was the source of the Dynasty collection. (Photo: Alrosa)

According to Alrosa, the Dynasty diamond is potentially the most expensive diamond manufactured in the history of Russian jewellery because of its quality.

Alrosa’s decision to produce these polished diamonds and sell them online fits with a broader industry quest to find new ways to the market and add value on the part of gem producers.

Alrosa and Anglo American’s De Beers unit, which for the first time auctioned polished stones this year, produce about half of the world’s rough diamonds.


Henry Sapiecha

Worlds biggest diamond mine Alrosa has sold $2.5 billion in diamonds so far this year 2017

World’s largest diamond producer by output said market has refound its balance.

Russia’s Alrosa (MCX:ALRS), the world’s top diamond producer by output, said Monday it sold $2.5 billion worth of rough and polished precious rocks from January to June this year.2017

From that total, rough diamonds sales totalled $2.442 billion, and polished ones fetched $54.9 million, the company said.

Last month alone, the miner brought in $365 million in diamond sales — $354 million in rough rocks and $10.6 m. in polished ones.

Alrosa Vice President Yury Okoemov said the company considers the seasonal slowdown of June officially at an end, adding the rough diamond market is back to being balanced.

The company, which is planning to increase production by 6% to 39.2 million carats this year, appointed in March Sergei Ivanov, the son of a close advisor to Russian president Vladimir Putin, as its new president.

Henry Sapiecha

Alrosa finds 62.75-carat diamond at prolific Jubilee pipe mine in Russia

Russia’s Alrosa (MCX:ALRS), the world’s top diamond producer by output, said Tuesday it found a 65.75-carat precious rock at the Jubilee kimberlite pipe of its Aikhalsky Mining unit in Yakutia, northeast Russia.

The transparent crystal, the miner said, has an octahedron-shape, light-yellowish tint and its measures 23 x 16 x 17 mm.

Alrosa’s Jubilee pipe is famous for its large finds. Several diamonds from 50 to 138 carats were recovered from the deposit in the past two years, including a 76.07-carat diamond, which was named in honour of 70 Years of the Soviet Union’s Victory in the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945 against Nazi Germany.

The company’s business unit Aikhal Mining accounted for over 30% of Alrosa’s total raw diamonds in 2016. It generated 12.2 million carats, worth $1.2 billion, according to the firm.

Henry Sapiecha

Alrosa unearths 241.21-carat diamond, one of largest ever found in Russia

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The diamond was found the Nyurbinsky open-pit mine, in Nakyn. (Image courtesy of ALROSA)

Russia’s Alrosa (MCX:ALRS), the world’s top diamond producer by output in carats, has unveiled the discovery of a 241.21-carat rough diamond at its Nyurbinsky open-pit mine.

The diamond is one of the largest ever recovered in Russia.

The precious rock, said the company, is one of the largest rough diamonds ever recovered in Russia and the third largest among those found by the company’s Nyurba Mining and Processing Division.

The massive diamond measures 38.64 mm by 27.34 mm by 25.46 mm, and is translucent with a grey hue. Traces of dissolution–etching channels and caverns–are observed on the surface.

The intermediate and peripheral zones have large cracks and the crystal contains graphite and sulphide inclusions, Alrosa said.

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The massive diamond measures 38.64 mm by 27.34 mm by 25.46 mm, and is translucent with a grey hue. (Image courtesy of ALROSA)

The Nyurbinsky has been in operations since 2001. Identified reserves January last year amounted to 36.9 million carats.

The Nyurba Mining and Processing Division is one of Alrosa’s youngest divisions, in charge of the Nakyn ore field as well as the Nyurbinsky and Botuobinsky open-pit mines.

The state-owned diamond miner may be privatized as soon as this summer, Russian Economy Minister Alexei Ulyukayev said at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum on Thursday, according to Reuters.


Henry Sapiecha

The world’s largest black diamond can now be seen in Dubai

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The unusual gem is named after the Korloff -Sapojnikoff family, members of the Russian nobility, who once owned it.

Billed as the world’s largest known black diamond, the 88-karat “Karloff Noir” made an appearance at a Dubai Mall last week to promote the reopening of a Karloff Paris boutique, a jewellery group with 50 boutiques worldwide and more than 450 points of sale.

The rarely publicly displayed gem was discovered in Siberia in 1917. It was cut from a 421-carat rough diamond and boasts a deep, rich black opaque colour. Daniel Paillasseur, founder and managing partner of Korloff Paris, purchased the precious stone in 1978 and named it after the royal Russian family, Korloff-Sapojnikoff, which originally owned it.

The Karloff Noir, insured for $37 million, resides in Paris, but Paillasseur told Emirates 24/7 that the reopening of the store in Dubai was more than a good reason to have flown the unusual and famous black diamond, as the country remains one of the best performing markets.

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This black diamond is believed to bring happiness, luck and prosperity to any person who has the privilege of touching it. It has been brought outside of Paris only on select occasions, for the Sultan of Brunei and the Queen of Malaysia.

Black diamonds are different from other coloured rocks because they do not get their shade from chemical impurities, such as nitrogen, hydrogen or boron. Rather, black diamonds owe their colour to numerous dark inclusions (mostly graphite), and their opaqueness is caused by a “polycrystalline” structure that inhibits the reflection of light.

Images courtesy of Korloff France.


Henry Sapiecha

Massive diamond unearthed in Russia


A massive 78.02 carat diamond, worth more than half a million dollars, has been unearthed on the Mirny Mir (Peaceful World) mine in Russia.

The regular shaped stone measures 28.5 by 28.3 by 24.2 millimetres, according to documents secured by infomine, and has only minor technogenic damages and small inclusions

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The rock has been described at transparent, with a yellowish and greenish hue.

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The largest stone ever extracted from the mine was found in 1980, weighed in at 342.5 carats, and was dubbed the XXVI Communist Party Congress, with another 145 carat diamond found in 2013.

Last year Petra Diamonds found a 232.08 carat diamond worth $22 million at its Cullinan mine in South Africa, while Australian miner Gem Diamonds found two 160 carat diamonds at their Letseng mine in February 2014.

However, one of the most impressive Australian finds in recent times was a 753 carat sapphire found by a fossicker, who reportedly simply found it on the ground.


Henry Sapiecha

Russian diamond mining giant Alrosa Q3 output drops

Rough diamonds at the Mirny Sorting Center, Republic of Sakha, Russia. ALROSA. image

Russian Alrosa, the world’s largest diamond producer by carat, said Monday its third-quarter production dropped 2% as a consequence of a shift to underground production at one of its mine in the country’s Far East.

The company’s total diamond production for the quarter reached 9.7 million carats, slightly down from 9.9 million carats in the same period a year ago, Alrosa said in the statement.

“The production decrease was mainly driven by the reduction in ore processing at the Udachnaya pipe in line with the company’s plan for the transition to underground mining at the deposit,” the miner said.

Alrosa’s rough diamond sales were up 8% for the first nine months of 2014 compared to the same period last year at 28.8 million carats or $3.7 billion.

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Henry Sapiecha

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Russian workers at Alrosa’s Udachnaya diamond mine have found a strange red and green 30 mm rock containing over 30,000 tiny diamonds, which may yield valuable information about how the precious gems form in natural conditions.

While the stone had a concentration of diamonds 1 million times higher than normal, the miners knew such small diamonds were pretty much worthless as gems, so they donated it to the Russian Academy of Sciences for study, LiveScience reports.

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The stone had a concentration of diamonds 1 million times higher than normal

After scanning the rock with X-rays, scientists found that the diamonds inside measure just 1mm and are octahedral in shape — similar to two pyramids stuck together at the base. The red and green colouring comes from larger crystals of garnet, olivine and pyroxene.


“The exciting thing for me is there are 30,000 itty-bitty, perfect octahedrons, and not one big diamond,” Larry Taylor, a geologist at the University of Tennessee, who presented the findings at the American Geophysical Union’s annual meeting, was quoted as saying. “It’s like they formed instantaneously. This rock is a strange one indeed.”

Russia is the largest diamond-producing country in the world, generating over 33 million carats last year. State-run Alrosa, the owner of Udachnaya mine, is the world’s largest diamond miner, accounting for 99% of Russia’s output and 27% of global production.

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Henry Sapiecha

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$2.1 billion in diamonds from Russia ‘with love’ for Indian companies

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India Russia diamond pact

Twelve Indian diamond companies including Kiran Gems, Asian Star and Rosy Blue India, have signed three year contracts with ALROSA at the World Diamond Conference,

Each of the companies signed separate contracts with ALROSA and will buy rough diamonds worth USD 2.1 billion or about USD 700 million per year for a period of three years. This will assist the companies save considerable amount of commissions.

Friday 12 December, 2014

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Henry Sapiecha

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Alrosa opens Russia’s largest diamond mine

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Russia-owned diamond miner Alrosa has began underground operations at its massive Udachny project in northeast Russia, expected to become the country’s largest diamond mine and one of the world’s biggest.

The Udachny (meaning “lucky”) mine, discovered in 1955, used to be an open-pit-only operation, but it is approaching the end of its mine life, by 2015. After that, Alrosa plans to begin commercial production from the beneath-the-surface kimberlite pipe, which is projected to generate over 5 million carats of diamonds per year.

Open-pit mining at the Udachny kimberlite pipe, one of Alrosa’s largest deposits, began in 1971, with the company obtaining about US$80 billion from the precious gems mined at the site throughout its operation.

Open-pit mining at the Udachny kimberlite pipe, one of Alrosa’s largest deposits, began in 1971, with the company obtaining about US$80 billion from the precious gems mined at the site throughout its operation.

The world’s No.1 diamond company by output said that underground mining will begin in parallel to the open-pit mine until next year, aiming to produce between 2.4 and 3 million tons of ore per year by 2016, and 4 million tons per year by 2019.

The city of Udachny, located in north Siberia, about 17 km from the Arctic Circle, has become one of Russia’s major diamond-mining centres.

Diamond giant

Aside from this mine, Alrosa also operates the International and Aikhal underground mines, with the designed capacity of 500 thousand tons of ore per year, and the Mir underground mine, which can reach 1 million tons of ore per year at full-tilt.

Currently the miner’s main processing facilities are in Western Yakutia and the Arkhangelsk region, as well as in Africa —in Angola and Botswana.

In total, the company is developing 22 deposits. In October 2013, the company held a successful IPO on the Moscow Stock Exchange, during the course of which 16% of the company’s shares were sold. This raised about $1.3 billion.

Henry Sapiecha

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