DiamondCorp (Southern African) reports that it has earned substantial sales on a beneficiation diamond from the Lace diamond mine in the Free State province of South Africa, revealing the upside to cutting, polishing and selling its own high quality stones. The 22.1 carat H coloured diamond sold to the Company's beneficiation joint venture in January this year has been manufactured into two high quality diamonds - a 7.2 carat F colored VVS2 emerald cut diamond and a 0.9 carat E colored VS1 pear shaped diamond. The two polished stones have been sold for a total of US$261,361. DiamondCorp's 50% share of the profit on the sale of the two polished diamonds is $71,979, lifting the total revenue on this one stone to $182,529, or $8,256 per carat. Commenting on the polished sales, DiamondCorp CEO Paul Loudon said: "This is an early indication of the significant additional value which can be created through beneficiating special and exceptional quality diamonds from Lace and gives management insight into how the stones perform when they are cut and polished. To date, all the Lace diamonds which we have beneficiated have improved in colour, which is critical knowledge to have for optimising the marketing of our production."
Additionally, with respect to operational issues related to breakdowns on the Company's fleet of existing underground trucks and loaders, DiamondCorp reports that it has acquired an additional four Sandvik 20-tonne underground dump trucks, two Sandvik 7-tonne underground loaders and two Sandvik single boom drill rigs. While representing an unplanned additional expenditure of approximately $1 million, the total cost of the eight vehicles, including refurbishment of the three dump trucks, is approximately a quarter of the price of new units at current exchange rates. These vehicles will allow the company to achieve tonnage ramp up to deliver 30,000 tons per month of kimberlite from the Upper K4 Block to the conveyor belt from July onwards. Taking into account the increase in bottom screen size in the plant from 1.00 mm to 1.25 mm, this production will put them on schedule to produce in excess of 75,000 carats from kimberlite in 2016 and in excess of 125,000 carats in 2017.