This article is reprinted from Paul Zimnisky Diamond Analytics, courtesy of Paul Zimnisky.
Diamond miner De Beers Thursday announced it will start a pilot project in June, selling polished diamonds, manufactured directly from the company’s rough by third parties to registered De Beers Auction buyers. The polished goods will be accompanied by grading reports from both De Beers’ own International Institute of Diamond Grading & Research (IIDGR) and the Gemological Institute of America (GIA).
Graff Diamonds announced they had added to their collection of exceptional stones by acquiring the 373.72-carat rough diamond sourced from the Karowe mine in Botswana. The stone was once a part of the Lesedi la Rona, the second largest gem quality diamond to ever be discovered and the largest to be unearthed in the last century. According to Graff the fragment was separated from its famous sibling during the recovery process.
De Beers Group today announced the value of rough diamond sales (Global Sightholder Sales and Auction Sales) for the fourth sales cycle of 2017, provisionally valued at $520 million. The fact that sales remain solid as the summer slowdown looms indicates continuaing upbeat sentiment in the manufacturing sector, spurring demand. Cycle 4 sales were down 11% from the revised figure of $586 million sold at the last sight (contract sales session) and slipped 18% from the fourth cycle a year ago.
"When you’re selling your offcuts for almost $20 million, you know something is going right," writes Thomas Biesheuvel for BloombergPursuits. "Lucara Diamond Corp. just sold a 373.7-carat diamond for US$17.5 million.
Sierra Leone's government announced yesterday (May 11) that it would seek higher offers in Antwerp for a massive 709-carat diamond after receiving underwhelming offers at auction in Freetown. British citizen Ziad al-Ahmadi, based in Antwerp and reportedly working for Raydiam BVBA, placed the $7.7 million bid which failed to match the government's unspecified reserve price, and turned out to be far lower than the $50 million the Sierra Leone government had originally hoped for, prompting the decision to try again in Belgium.
Russian diamond mining giant ALROSA reports a drop in rough diamond sales in April 2017, earning US$310.2 million as, "the share of small-size, inexpensive rough diamonds was significantly higher than early in 2016." Polished diamond sales in April amounted to US$7.6 million. In January–April 2017, ALROSA sold 16.9 million carats of rough and polished diamonds, which is 7% higher than the sales in January-April 2016.
The sixth edition of the unique "Rough Diamond Days" got underway yesterday (May 10) at the Rough Diamond Bourse (Antwerpsche Diamantkring) in Antwerp, and the traders on the floor are clearly enthusiastic about the format. The event creates a forum for Antwerp-based rough traders - approximately 45 at this edition - to showcase their goods to local and international buyers on an open trade floor, the way it used to be done, and is the only one of its kind.
Antwerp's diamond trade experienced modest and mixed results in April: the volume of rough diamond exports stayed flat for the month while rough imports were down mainly as a result of De Beers not holding a sight in April. Volume declines were also recorded for imports as well as exports of polished goods, in part due to the spring holiday season around the world, though the average value of imports outweighed the fall in volume and ended up slightly on a year-over-year basis.
The diamond industry has a sort of 'Holy Grail' when it comes to consumer confidence and putting to rest an issue that critics rely on to deride the trade as unethical and still awash with 'conflict diamonds': guaranteed provenance. Acoording to an interview last week, Andrey Polyakov, president of the World Diamond Council (WDC) and a vice-president of Russian diamond giant ALROSA, believes one key to obtaining that grail is close at hand in the form of a physical 'fingerprint' that would enable diamonds to be tracked to their origin.
Rapaport has issued a press release on the current rough and polished diamond markets, which boils down to the following: "Amid sluggish polished markets, rough trading remained strong." The second quarter of the year is typically a slow period for diamond trading, and April this year proved no different.
Australia’s term as Chair of the Kimberley Process kicked off today at the KP Intersessional Meeting in Perth, which runs from May 1 – 4. The focus of this year’s meeting is the start of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) review cycle in order to strengthen the Kimberley Process.
On April 21, Guangzhou Diamond Exchange (GZDE) held his first rough diamond sales, the GZDE communicates in a press release. "This is the first rough diamond exhibition and open sales in mainland China." They were able to hold the sale as a result of permission granted by AQSIQ, the ministry in charge of Kimberley Process Certification Scheme in China, as well as customs and other relative authorities, they said. GZDE implemented three selling modes for the rough diamonds: allocation, negotiation and online auction. The sales period lasted two and a half days.
Koin International will hold its May rough sales of African diamonds in Antwerp from 8 - 17 May. The tender includes exciting selections of original mine rough productions, including diamonds from Ekapa Minerals (selection of tailings from Kimberley, South Africa), Angola F2M (10.80ct.+ and melee to 4ct. parcels), Diamcor Mining (original run of mine from Krone-Endora mine, South Africa, singles through to melee parcels), Democratic Republic of Congo (Run of Mine) and Guiter Minerals Sarl (Guinea Run of Mine).
Firestone Diamonds has announced its quarterly update on commissioning activities at its Liqhobong Diamond Mine in Lesotho for the quarter ended March 2017 (Q3 of the Company's financial year): with commissioning activities largely complete and final ramp up progressing on track, during the quarter ended March 2017 the plant treated 639,000 tons (Q2: 402,000 tons), achieving nameplate production rates on numerous occasions. 103,000 carats were recovered in the quarter at a grade of 16.1 carats per hundred tons (cpht), against 58,000 carats in Q2 at a grade of 14.1 cpht.
ALROSA’s new President Sergey Ivanov led a senior delegation from the Russian diamond miner to Antwerp today to get acquainted with their partners at the Antwerp World Diamond Centre.
Dominion Diamond Corporation reports strong growth in gross margins, adjusted EBITDA and net income of $5.6 million - despite a 27% decline in sales - in Q4 of the fiscal year ending January 31, 2017. This was attributable to ramp up of high value production at Ekati and steady performance at Diavik. The sale, late in the quarter, of Ekati mine goods from higher value Misery Main open pit and Koala underground ore processed in late Q3 fiscal 2017, together with higher processing volumes at the Diavik mine in the same period, paved the way for their stronger consolidated gross margin.
Russian mining giant ALROSA sold US$554.2 million worth of rough diamonds in March 2017, while polished diamond sales for the same period amounted to US$12.4 million, briging total diamond sales in March 2017 to US$566.6 million. This represents a 1% increase compared to the same period last year, according to the company. Sales for the first quarter 2017 remained flat compared to Q1 2016, at $1.3 billion. In comparison to February, rough sales jumped 42 percent from $389M.
The government of Sierra Leone said Wednesday April 5 that it was extending the bidding for a massive 709-carat diamond found by an Evangelical preacher last month, after the government received only six offers for the gem, writes Times of Israel. The original plan was to open the bids today, April 6, but bids will now be accepted until May 10 - in particular to allow more time for potential buyers from Belgium, Israel, South Africa and the United Arab Emirates, a government spokesman said - with the auction to be held the following day.
Antwerp's diamond trade trended strong across the board in March, as the rough diamond trade experienced an increase in volume as well as value, while the polished trade saw better results than in previous months. The volume of rough exports from Antwerp increased 7% year-over-year to 10.75 million carats, while rough imports jumped nearly 16% compared to the same month a year earlier, reaching 9.4 million carats.
Coming shortly after their annoucement of developing Vladivostok as a diamond center, Russia's diamond mining giant ALROSA has held an auction to sell industrial grade and gem quality natural rough diamonds in the Eurasian Diamond Centre in Primorye (the Russian Far East), the company writes in a press release. 22 companies from China, South Korea, India, Europe, Russia and other countries participated in the auction.
The De Beers Group today announced the (provisional, as of April 3) value of rough diamond sales (Global Sightholder Sales and Auction Sales) for the third sales cycle of 2017, earning $580 million. This represents a nearly 5% increase over the value of sales in Cycle 2, and nearly a 13% decline from Cycle 3 2016.
The diamond industry's famous supply and demand chart - the 'hungry crocodile' - representing its forecast of rising rough diamond prices as production falls to shortage levels, "Not only has never materialized, it oversimplifies the fact that the industry’s 15,000 different categories of diamonds are performing in very different ways," writes Thomas Biesheuvel for Bloomberg.
Lucara Diamond has announced the dates for its first Exceptional Stone Tender of 2017 from its 100% owned Karowe Mine in Botswana. Viewings for the tender will take place from May 3, 2017 through May 11, 2017 with the sale closing at 4:00pm CET on May 11, 2017, the company writes in a press release. "The sale will include no less than 13 exceptional diamonds, inclusive of the magnificent 374 carat Type IIa diamond and an additional three or four stones larger than 100 carats.
Russia's leading oil and gas company Lukoil has reported revenue from sales of rough diamonds from its Grib Mine in Russia in the amount of nearly $340 million (RUB 20 billion) for the year 2016, representing an 82% increase over the $186m (RUB 11bn) in 2015 (see link to financial statement, p.25).
Diamond industry analyst and author of the Zimnisky Global Rough Diamond Price Index, Paul Zimnisky, takes us on, "A Trip Through the Diamond Industry in March 2017." If there is one trip you make this weekend, we recommend this one.
Russian diamond miner ALROSA's rough diamond sales in February 2017 amounted to US$389.8 million, an 8.8% increase over the $358.2 million sold in January. This brings Alrosa's rough sales for the first two months of 2017 to nearly $750 million, a slight drop from the estimated $780-800 million sold during the first two months of 2016.
The month of March will again see a full schedule of rough diamond tenders and sales in Antwerp.
When people talk badly about diamonds, they think of the stone they're going to buy, but they don't think of the lives that are going to be affected. In Botswana, for example, 45-50% of the total GDP comes from diamond mining. So when people say, "I'm not going to buy a diamond because it has a bad rep", think of the two-plus million people in Botswana that will be affected.
- William Lamb, CEO Lucara Diamond, Interview with Bloomberg TV, on India's demonitization, diamond demand, Kimberley Process, positive sentiment in industry, Trump effect, DPA, Millennials and finding a buyer for the magnificent Lesedi La Rona ... all in 6 minutes.
Antwerp's rough diamond trade continued its steady climb in the month of February, as the volume of rough exports from Antwerp increased 17% from January, while imports increased over 23% compared to the month before, according to figures from Antwerp World Diamond Centre. The value of those exports reflected the lower-priced nature of the goods, as the dollar value of rough exports only increased 6%, while the value of rough imports actually fell 5% despite the increases in volume.
Gahcho Kué, the world’s largest new diamond mine in the last 13 years, officially began commercial production today (2 March 2017), De Beers announced in a press release. The mine, a joint venture with De Beers Group (51%) and Mountain Province Diamonds (49%), is expected to produce approximately 54 million carats of rough diamonds over its lifetime. Production ramp up began on 1 August 2016 and the official opening ceremony took place on 20 September 2016. Bruce Cleaver, CEO, De Beers Group, said: “Today marks a significant landmark for De Beers in Canada as Gahcho Kué becomes an important
According to a press release, ALROSA, the world’s largest diamond producer by volume, reported the results of the international diamond auction, which took place in the Sixth International Diamond Week in Israel (IDWI), offering for sale special-size natural rough diamonds (10.8-ct+) , as well as polished goods. The company sold 105 lots of rough and polished diamonds worth $21.8 million during the trading session held on 13-16 February, 2017 in the City of Ramat Gan, Israel. The auction was attended by 119 buyers from 30 countries.
The De Beers Group of Companies has announced the (provisional) value of rough diamond sales (Global Sightholder Sales and Auction Sales) for the second sales cycle of 2017 has earned $545 million. This represents a 25% dropoff from the $729 million achieved in Cycle 1, and is nearly 12% lower than in Cycle 2 2016, which earned $617 million. Nonetheless, excluding January 2017, it is the largest sales cycle since September of 2016.
ALROSA did not carry out sweeping changes to prices at its diamond trading session with long-term clients in January and February, representatives of two of the miner's counterparties told Interfax, but the company did adjust prices for small, low-quality diamonds, or so-called Indian 'makeables' in January, reacting to weaker demand for this category.
Stornoway Diamond Corporation has issued its annual results, detailing a memorable 2016. Their Renard Diamond Mine officially opened on October 19, 2016, and following the commencement of ore processing on July 15, 2016, commercial production was formally declared on January 1, 2017. The first sale of Renard Diamonds was held during November in Antwerp in Belgium. In total, 38,913 carats were sold at an average price of US$195 per carat, for proceeds of US$7.6 million (C$10.2 m).
Trans Hex, a JSE-listed diamond exploration and mining company with well-established land operations in South Africa and interests in Angola, says trading volumes have returned to normal as a result of improved market conditions, leading to stronger results at its October 2016, December 2016 and February 2017 tender sales of rough diamond production from its wholly owned South African operations.
Dominion Diamonds has announced that sales of Ekati Diamond Mine and Diavik Diamond Mine diamonds fell 27% in Q4 2017 (November 2016 through January 2017) and 21% overall in FY 2017, despite the quantity of diamonds sold increasing 24% in Q4 and 61% for the year. It has also provided Q4 production results from its Ekati Mine, where carat production increased by 93% compared to the same period in the prior year due to the positive impact of processing of a large proportion of high grade Misery ore.
As we noted two weeks ago, word from De Beers and ALROSA was that the sharp decline in low-quality, low-value stones destined for India has abated as the country's cash situation stabilizes post-demonitization, and India's official January trade figures bear this out. The Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) reports that the volume of rough diamond imports during the month increased 41% over December 2016 and a full 79% since November 2016 when demonitization was introduced.
Anglo American and De Beers' 2016 Annual Financial Results (preliminary) confirm a solid rebound from 2015 for the rough diamond giant, with annual revenues increasing 30% to $6.1 billion from $4.7 billion, on the back of a 37% rise in rough diamond sales, which reached $5.6 billion.
DDA Trading Bvba is pleased to announce the second sale of Namibian Marine Rough Diamonds in Antwerp. They will be offering approx. 8,900cts of Full ROM, Original Marine Goods of Gem quality. The goods are from the underwater concessions of Diamond Fields Namibia ML 111. Viewings will take place by appointment only in Antwerp at DDA Trading’s office in the Antwerp Diamond Bank, Pelikaanstraat 54, Floor 6, 2018 Antwerp from Monday 20 to Monday 27 February with the sale closing on Tuesday the 28th of February.
Petra Diamonds Limited has announced strong results for the six months to 31 December 2016 (H1 2017), with rough diamond production, revenues and carats sold all seeing substantial increases. Revenues were up 48% to US$228.5 million (H1 FY 2016: US$154.0 million) or US$217.6 excluding exceptional diamonds, with net profit after tax up more than 35% to US$35.2 million (H1 FY 2016: US$2.2 million loss) and an EBITDA margin of 38% (H1 FY 2016: 31%), indicating increased profitability. Petra's carats sold in the first half jumped 47% to 1.9 Mcts.
Russian mining giant ALROSA is stepping up its marketing game beyond its contributions to the Diamond Producers Association (DPA), we were told this past Wednesday at ALROSA Night - a joint initiative between the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) and ALROSA at the Belgian Ambassador's Residence in Moscow.
Lucara Diamond Corp., which runs the Karowe Mine in Botswana and holds multiple exploration licences in the region, reports record earnings - and dividends - for the year 2016. Revenues increased 32% to $295.5 million from $223.8 million in 2015, with its EBITDA surging 38% to $184.4 million on the back of a 40% rise in price per carat achieved: $824 per carat compared to $593 per carat a year ago. However, net income declined 9% to $70.7 million in 2016, mainly due to a foreign-exchange loss of $11 million compared with a gain of $15 million a year earlier, the company.
Namibia's Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has dropped an investigation into whether a new government independent sales company called Namib Desert Diamonds (Namdia) deliberately sold Namibian diamonds cheaply to Dubai-based firms, writes The Namibian, which first broke the story back in November 2016. The Namibian previously raised concerns that Namdia, tasked to sell stones worth over US$150 million (N$2.1 billion) per year as stipulated by a
Koin International will hold a rough diamond tender in Antwerp from 20 – 27 February, and will be presenting for the first time the production of IMDSA (Marine) as well as multiple other original rough mine productions. IMDSA is a new marine production mined in the seas of South Africa, comprising excellent models and gem quality production. Other productions on offer include Ekapa Minerals, ANGOLA F2M, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Guinea, and brand new Koin Manufacturers’ Assortments (consistent monthly fixed assortments, perfect for manufacturers).
I. Hennig Tenders will be tendering a large selection (approximately 250 stones) of large single rough stones (10.80 carats to 183 carats) of Russian origin. Commenting on the upcoming rough diamond tender, I. Hennig Tenders CEO, David Kuchler said, “We will be offering a significant selection of large rough goods of Russian origin sourced in Gokhran in this upcoming tender. The tender will comprise of specialist commercial (cleavage and rejection) articles presenting an interesting buying opportunity to our tender clients.” The Tender will be held in Antwerp February 15-23.
Firestone's first sale of diamonds recovered from its Liqhobong Diamond Mine saw over 90 companies viewing the goods in Antwerp last week, with more than 38 companies making successful bids. The company sold all of the 75,936 carats offered for sale, realising an average price of US$107 per carat, resulting in total proceeds of US$8.14 million. Firestone says, "The average price per carat achieved was very pleasing, considering that the carats sold were recovered from the predominantly lower quality ore areas and are not necessarily representative of the run of mine ore.
Antwerp's rough diamond trade surged again in the month of January, as the dollar value of rough exports from the diamond capital rose 30% while imports kept pace with a 31% increase compared to the same period in a year ago, according to figures from Antwerp World Diamond Centre. Volumes were up as well, with Antwerp exporting nearly 18% more carats than in January 2016, while rough imports increased by 36%.
Last year Rio Tinto’s diamond revenue slid 12%, leading them to review their plans to extend the life of the Argyle diamond mine, considering the global demand for rough had otherwise strengthened, writes The West Australian. Rio Tinto spent $US2.5 billion expanding the Argyle mine below ground with an expected lifespan reaching 2021. Should they decide not to continue with the planned underground extension, the mine’s closure could come considerably sooner. They are yet to announce whether they will continue with the second stage of the underground block cave at the East Kimberley mine.
Australia's Lucapa Diamond Company, whose main asset is the Lulo diamond project in Angola, has sold a parcel of 2,946 carats of Lulo diamonds earning gross proceeds of US$3.8 million (A$4.9M). This represents an average price per carat of US$1,276 (A$1,671), a far cry from their $2,983 per carat average from the fourth quarter of 2016. The sale comprised diamond recoveries through December 31 2016, and included a 75-carat diamond and a 55-carat diamond.
Firestone Diamonds, the newest diamond miner in the Kingdom of Lesotho, is holding its maiden tender of diamonds from their Liqhobong Mine (Firestone 75%, Lesotho 25%) in Antwerp this week. It was the perfect occasion to catch up with Firestone CEO Stuart Brown in the offices of First Element, the tender house hosting the sale.
ALROSA, the Russian diamond mining giant, reports January sales of rough diamonds at $358.2 million and polished at $7.8 million; overall sales of $365.4 million represent a 107% increase over December 2016 and a 60% increase over the same period last year. The miner said it was "cautiously optimistic" that the trade in lower quality, low-cost goods - the majority of which are destined for India - is stabilizing.
Stornoway Diamond Corporation has announced 2016 production results from its Renard Mine in Quebec that far outstrip its projected output. For the year ended December 31, 2016, Stornoway mined 2,074,827 tons of ore from the Renard 2- Renard 3 and Renard 65 open pits, compared to a plan of 879,641 tons (+136%).
Canadian jeweler and diamond industry analyst Mel Moss explores a core dilemma concerning the value proposition of diamonds. It is a dlemma the diamond industry has yet to resolve, leading to confusion and false expectations among consumers: how can a diamond be presented both as a luxury product and a price-based commodity? "Some in the diamond industry are pushing hard to promote generic diamonds as a commodity that can be traded transparently in futures markets, commodity exchanges and as a wealth preservation asset", writes Moss.
Citing data from its RapNet Diamond Index (RAPI), Rapaport News writes, "Diamond manufacturing profits were squeezed in January amid strong rough demand while polished prices softened." Despite a disappointing holiday season, demand of rough is strong as jewelers will need to restock after the holiday season. This is demonstrated by De Beers' First Cycle sales of $720 million, its largest sight since July 2014.
After a difficult 2015, the Antwerp diamond industry recorded a 5% increase in trade in 2016, according to a press release from the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC). This past year, a total of 48 billion USD worth of diamonds were imported to and exported from Antwerp. "The rough diamond market in particular is clearly making a strong recovery. This is positive sign, given that the rough diamond trade is the foundation and heart of the diamond trade.
Provisional rough diamond sales at De Beers Cycle 1 sight of 2017 earned $720 million, the highest total sales in more than a year. This represents a more than 70% uptick from the last sight, Cycle 10 in 2016, and is 32% higher than first Cycle sales ($545M) of 2016. Bruce Cleaver, CEO, De Beers Group, said: “We saw good demand across the majority of our assortment during the first sales cycle of the year, as the industry entered the period when rough diamond demand is traditionally strongest.
The Queen of Kalahari, a 342-carat rough diamond that Lucara Diamond mining company recovered in Botswana’s Karowe Mine two years ago, has been transformed into a six-piece jewelry set includeing 23 diamonds. Lucara took over the mine, previously owned by the De Beers Group, in 2010.
Diamcor Mining has completed the installation of additional operational equipment and expansions underway at its Krone-Endora Mine at Venetia project in Limpopo, South Africa. The junior diamond project developer confirmed that all the work is now complete and all the items are now operational.