Leading producer of high-value stones Gem Diamonds recorded modest declines in Q3 compared to Q2, reporting fewer carats sold, lower revenue and average prices achieved for its goods from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho. A year-over-year comparision, however, paints a picture of a more substantial decline and reflects the realities miners are facing in this slumping market.
Gem Diamonds recovered a 161-carat high quality white Type IIa diamond at the Letšeng mine on 28 October 2019. The lastest find is the fifth exceptionally-sized (+100 carat) white diamond unearthed this year. Together with three yellows stones larger than 100 carats the miner recovered this year, their total number of exceptional finds now sits at eight.
Gem Diamonds on September 11 recovered a D-color, type II diamond weighing 127 carats from its Letšeng mine in Lesotho. The lastest find is the fourth exceptionally-sized (+100 carat) white diamond unearthed this year. Together with the three yellows stones larger than 100 carats recovered this year, their total of exceptional finds now sits at seven: the miner this year has recovered gem-quality white diamonds weighing 123.5, 127, 140 and 161 carats to go with gem-quality yellows weighing 114.2, 134 and 135 carats.
Gem Diamonds first half 2019 results took a downturn as the miner recoverd fewer large stones at its Letšeng mine in Lesotho, while the average prices achieved per carat - while still the highest in the business - fell well below their averages over the past three financial halves. While year-over-year comparisons are somewhat skewed by the very high bar set in in H1 2018, revenue from the sale of rough stones was down 44% to $94.5 million compared with $168 million in H1 2018, though it was not too far off revenue from the previous half (H2 2018), which totaled $99 million.
Gem Diamonds has unearthed a 114.2-carat yellow stone from its Letšeng mine in Lesotho, making it the fourth major recovery of a colored diamond from the mine this year and the sixth gem-quality stone larger than 100 carats since the year began.
Replicating the first-half results of 2018 was always going to be a challenge for Gem Diamonds, and against that high bar the miner came up short in H1 2019.
Gem Diamonds recovered a 123.5-carat high-quality Type II white diamond at its Letšeng mine in Lesotho on Saturday, 20 July, the company announced this week. This find brings to three the number of white diamonds weighing more than 100 carats the miner has unearthed this year, and it is its second in the month of July. Gem recovered a similar 'high-quality white diamond' weighing 140 carats July 6,
Gem Diamonds has unearthed a 'high-quality white diamond' weighing 140 carats from its Letšeng mine in Lesotho, making it the second white diamond larger than 100 carats recovered this year as well as the fourth of this magnitude in 2019.
Gem Diamonds today announced it has appointed Ms. Mazvi Maharasoa, who served as the Chief Executive Officer of Letšeng Diamonds from 2009 to 2017, as a non-executive director. Maharasoa has over 20 years' of senior management experience, more than 10 of which in the mining sector. Prior to her time as CEO of Letšeng Diamonds, she served as its resident director for two years. Ms. Maharasoa was also the founder and president of the Lesotho Chamber of Mines (2016).
Gem Diamonds has unearthed a 135-carat yellow from its Letšeng mine in Lesotho, making it the third major recovery of a colored diamond discovery from the mine this year. Gem recovered an exceptional, 134-carat Type I yellow diamond back in April - the first yellow stone of that magnitude since they dug up a 151.52-carat yellow diamond nearly two years ago.
Gem Diamonds has sold its Ghaghoo mine in Botswana to Pro Civil, a local company, for $5.4m (R77m), bringing to an end Gem's struggles with the underground mine that never lived up to its expectations. Pro Civil, a company registered in Botswana, will acquire Gem Diamonds Botswana Proprietary and the Ghaghoo mine, which has been on care and maintenance since March of 2017.
While the volume of carats Gem Diamonds sold in Q1 2019 (Jan. 1 - March 31) from its Letšeng mine in Lesotho fell by 18% from the previous quarter to 27,335 carats, those sales packed a punch, generating $51.9 million in value, a 24% increase from Q4 2018. Still, the miner could not keep pace with its torrid start to 2018.
Gem Diamonds has recovered an exceptional, 134-carat Type I yellow diamond from Letšeng Mine in Lesotho, the miner's third important find in recent weeks and its second remarkable colored stone this year. It has been nearly two years since Gem Diamonds recovered a yellow stone of that magnitude.
Gem Diamonds unearthed a 161-carat top-quality Type II white diamond at the Letseng mine in Lesotho on 21 March 2019. It is the first recovery announced of a diamond weighing more than 100 carats in 2019, but not their first major find of the year. Last month, Gem recovered a high-quality 13.33-carat Type I pink diamond, which sold for $8,750,360 in Antwerp.
Gem Diamonds Ltd. has sold a 13.33 carat pink diamond on tender in Antwerp for $8,750,360. The price achieved sets a new high on a dollar per carat basis for a Letšeng diamond, at $656,933. For the sake of comparison, over the course of the 2018, Gem recovered a 138.28-carat white diamond which achieved US$60,428 per carat - the highest dollar per carat for a white rough diamond during the year - and a a 4.06 carat, pink diamond that earned US$64,067 per carat - the highest price per carat achieved during 2018.
Gem Diamonds, which operates the Letšeng mine in Lesotho, recovered four high-quality diamonds larger than 100 carats in January 2018 and never looked back, riding a record number of +100-carat diamond recoveries in a single calendar year (15) to increased revenues and profit, but they have declined to pay out a dividend. The first big find of the year was the exceptional 910-carat Lesotho Legend, which the miner sold last March for $40 million.
The state of the diamond mining industry as 2019 enters full swing is concerning to many throughout the trade. The fall in prices of small, lower-quality diamonds, a staple of many miners, had participants at the Africa Mining Indaba last week concerned about the sustainability of their operations if the market does not correct this year, with some even concerned about their survival.
Gem Diamonds recovered a high-quality 13.33 carat, pink colour Type I diamond from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho on 7 February 2019. The prices for diamonds of this color of diamond are typically exceptional. In the first half of 2018, when Gem recovered 10 rough stones larger than 100-carats at its Letšeng mine, the highest price achieved was $62,433 per carat for a 2.26-carat pink diamond.
Gem Diamonds had a banner year in terms of recoveries, sales and average prices acheived for its diamonds unearthed from its Letšeng mine in Lesotho. In addition to setting a company record for recoveries in a single year of diamonds larger than 100 carats (15) and of diamonds larger than 20 carats (257), in 2018 Gem's carats recovered increased by 13% to 126,875 carats (2017: 111 811 carats), sales jumped 29% to $267 million from $207 million, and the average price rose by 10% to $2,131 per carat, up 10% from $1,930 per carat in 2017.
Gem Diamonds brought 2018 to a close much in the same way that it opened the miner's banner year - with the unearthing of a 125-carat high quality white, Type IIa diamond - recovered from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho. It was the fifteenth diamond greater than 100 carats the London-based miner recovered in 2018. The recovery, which took place on December 20, following the December 19 announcement of the recovery of high quality 101 carat and 71 carat white Type IIa diamonds, both recovered within a twenty four hour period.
Gem Diamonds said its third quarter (ended 30 September) production from its Letšeng mine in Lesotho rose 27% compared to Q2 2018, and the miner has raised its production and sales guidance for the year. Gem Diamonds now anticipates is full-year output to reach 120 to 124 million carats, up from the 114 to 118 million carats announced last March. The announcement follows improved mining efficiencies and strong production during the period. The miner also projects to sell 118,000 to 122,000 carats, up from 112,000 to 116,000 carats announced previously.
Gem Diamonds has recovered a 357 carat light brown high-quality diamond trom its 70 percent-owned Letšeng mine in Lesotho, representing the 13th stone larger than 100 carats the miner has unearthed this year, a company record. The latest find is Gem's second-largest this year, with their largest being the 910 carat Lesotho Legend, a D color Type IIa diamond recovered in January, which sold for $40 million last March.
Ari Epstein, CEO of the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC), along with several representatives from the Antwerp diamond industry today met King Letsie III of Lesotho in Brussels. Lesotho, a mountainous country fully surrounded by South Africa and numbering only two million inhabitants, is the world’s seventh most important diamond-producing country in terms of value. Lesotho’s entire diamond production, worth $342 million in 2017, is traded on the Antwerp market.
Gem Diamonds, which operates the Letšeng mine in the mountainous kingdom of Lesotho in southern Africa, famous for producing the world’s most valuable stones, is in the midst of a banner year as a record number of large diamond recoveries (+100ct) pushed revenue to $167.7 million, up 81% from $92.9 million in H1 2017. The company set a half year record of ten diamonds greater than 100 carats, including the recovery of the 910 carat Lesotho Legend, which was sold in March to an Antwerp company for $40 million ($43,912 per carat).
Gem Diamonds has recovered a 138 carat, top white color Type IIa diamond from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho. This recovery is now the twelfth diamond of over 100 carats in 2018, and a record for the Company in terms of the number of diamonds of over 100 carats recovered in a year.
Gem Diamonds Limited (LSE: GEMD) recoverd a 100.5 carat, top white color Type IIa diamond from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho, the eleventh diamond of over 100 carats in 2018. Just past the halfway mark of the year, Gem Diamonds has already surpassed its large diamond recovery from 2017 (8), more than doubles that of 2016 (5) and is the first time they have recovered 11 such stones since 2015. It is the first in +100 recovery in H2 of 2018, following a remarkable string of recoveries in the first half of the year. The miner dug up its 10th massive gem in early June: a 102-carat diamond.
Gem Diamonds Limited today announced the recovery of yet another large, high-quality diamond, this time weighing 115 carats. The stone is top white colour Type IIa diamond, recovered from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho. This is the ninth diamond of over 100 carats recovered in 2018, already exceeding the total number of diamonds of over 100 carats recovered in 2017.
London-based Gem Diamonds, a leading global producer of high value diamonds whose main resource is the Letšeng mine in the Maluti Mountains of Lesotho (70% ownership), and Canadian junior Lucara Diamonds, which sports a similar profile with its 100% owned high-value Karowe Mine in Botswana, have made new appointments in their senior management. Gem Diamonds announced that Johnny Velloza, currently Chief Operating Officer, has been appointed Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the Company, effective May 2 2018.
A veritable bonanza of large diamond recoveries, including the 910-carat Lesotho Legend, a high-quality diamond unearthed on 15 January - the second largest gem quality diamond recovered in the past century - sent Gem Diamonds' revenues soaring to the tune of an 174% increase in Q1 2018.
London-based miner Gem Diamonds has announced that the government of Lesotho, represented by the Prime Minister and Minister of Mining, has confirmed their intention to renew the mining lease of the high-value Letšeng mine until 2034. The mining lease may be further extended if necessary in relation to any underground development of the mine thereafter. The full terms of the renewed mining lease are subject to a statutory negotiation process with the Lesotho Mining Board and, when agreed, will be contained in a new mining lease agreement.
Gem Diamonds returned to profit in 2017 as it recovered seven diamonds over 100 carats, but the miner's prospects are looking even better for the year ahead, as today's announcement of the recovery of a 169 carat stone is the seventh diamond of over 100 carats recovered already in 2018. Gem returned to profitability for the year ending 31 December, recording a profit before tax of $30.3m, up from a loss the previous year of $124.1m; profit after tax was $17.2m (-$144.1m) and attributable profit was $5.5m (-$158.8), after exceptional items.
Gem Diamonds this morning announced the sale of the "Lesotho Legend": the exceptional quality 910 carat D colour Type IIa diamond recovered from the Letšeng mine in January 2018 achieved a price of US$40 million on tender in Antwerp on 12 March, 2018. It is the fifth largest gem-quality diamond ever recovered in history and the third largest in a century.
The run of large diamond finds by London-based miner Gem Diamonds keeps going, as the company has announced the recovery of yet another huge diamond of exceptional quality, this time a 152 carat, D color Type IIa diamond from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho, the highest dollar per carat kimberlite diamond mine in the world. This is the sixth diamond of over 100 carats recovered in 2018. The third of which was the recovery of the massive 910 carat diamond announced on 15 January, 2018, the fifth biggest diamond find in history.
London-based miner Gem Diamonds recently rocked the diamond world with the announcement of its latest remarkable recovery from the Letšeng mine in the Kingdom of Lesotho: a 910-carat, D color Type IIa diamond. It is the fifth-largest gem quality diamond ever recovered and is of the highest quality. The Diamond Loupe had the opportunity to sit down with Gem Diamonds CEO Clifford Elphick and Commercial Director Glenn Turner at the Gem Diamonds office in Antwerp. (see a photo of the diamond in annex below)
Gem Diamonds, the London-based miner operating the Letšeng mine in Lesotho, recovered more carats, more large diamonds and sold them at a higher price in 2017 than in 2016, the company announced in their Q4 2017 Trading Update. They have also started 2018 on a roll, announcing on 15 January 2018 the landmark recovery of an exceptional quality 910 carat, D Colour Type IIa diamond - the largest diamond to be mined to date at Letšeng and also believed to be the fifth largest gem quality diamond ever recovered.
London-based miner Gem Diamonds has announced the recovery of an exceptional quality 149 carat, D color Type IIa diamond, with excellent shape, from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho, the highest dollar per carat kimberlite diamond mine in the world. This is the fourth high quality diamond of over 100 carats recovered so far this year, and follows closely upon the recovery of the exceptional 910 carat diamond announced on 15 January, 2018.
Gem Diamonds this morning announced the recovery of an exceptional quality 910-carat, D color Type IIa diamond from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho, making it the fifth largest gem-quality diamond ever recovered in history and the third largest in a century, behind only Lucara Diamonds' 2015 discovery of the 1,009-carat Lesedi La Rona.
Gem Diamonds has announced the recovery of high-quality 117 and 110-carat, D colour Type IIa diamonds from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho, famed for its large, Type IIa stones that often achieve the highest dollar per carat rough prices in the world. The London-based company recovered seven such stones in 2017 after unearthing only five in 2016.
At their summer tender in 2017, Gem Diamonds achieved an average price of $2,397 per carat, making it the highest achieved dollar value per carat for a tender since September 2015.
In Gem Diamonds’ Half Year 2017 results, announced on 17 August 2017, shareholders were notified that an offer to acquire 100% of the Ghaghoo asset ("Ghaghoo") had been received and was being considered by the Board.
Discussions have not resulted in agreement between parties and this offer has been withdrawn, the company announced this morning.