Gübelin Gem Lab in Switzerland has launched the first colored gemstone blockchain which will track the provenance of gemstones at every step along the supply chain. Called the Provenance Proof Blockchain, its purpose is to provide the industry with a tool that enables genuine transparency concerning the origin and movement of gemstones. A gemstone’s journey begins at the mine, which is where the blockchain ideally starts.
The GIA (Gemological Institute of America) has developed an illustrated booklet, “Selecting Gem Rough: A Guide for Artisanal Miners,” to help small-scale miners learn more about the quality and classification of the gems they recover, and ultimately to obtain greater market value. As Russel Shor explains, the two pilot projects GIA initiated with Pact, a Washington, D.C.-based non-governmental development organization with offices in Tanzania, are having an impact on these miners' lives.
Gemfields has announced the discovery of ‘Inkalamu’ – the ‘Lion Emerald’ – a 5,655 carat Zambian emerald crystal with remarkable clarity and a perfectly balanced golden green hue. Inkalamu was discovered at Kagem, the world’s largest emerald mine, which is 75% owned by Gemfields and 25% by the Industrial Development Corporation of Zambia (which belongs in turn to the Government of the Republic of Zambia).
The second edition of CARAT+, ‘The World's Premier Diamond Event’, is ready to get underway on Sunday, May 6. Today the organization reported that pre-show registrations have climbed 50% compared to the 3,000 people that attended the first edition last year, with individuals from more than 51 countries having registered to attend.
In five years’ time, in 20 years’ time, people are going to be kicking themselves they didn’t buy Ethiopian. The material is as good if not better than what’s coming out of Muzo [the legendary Colombian emerald mine]. Not only is the material exquisite - it has very intense color - but it also has a glow, which Zambian doesn’t have. It’s not as blue as Colombian but it glows like Colombian. It blew everybody’s minds. Apart from the fact that it’s beautiful, 40 percent of our material has no oil, which is unheard of. Less than one-half of 1 percent of Colombian material has no oil.
Pallinghurst has announced the results of an auction of higher quality rough emeralds held by Gemfields plc (“Gemfields”, which is 100% owned by Pallinghurst) - its first emerald auction since Pallinghurst took over the company - held in Lusaka, Zambia, from 2 – 5 October 2017.
A "Very Rare and Impressive Ruby and Diamond Ring", designed by Bhagat, stole the show at Sotheby’s Hong Kong Magnificent Jewels and Jadeite sale last week, selling for $10.5 million (HKD 81.7 million), or $788,296 per carat, while a rare blue diamond ring estimated at $7 to $9.6 million failed to achieve its reserve price. The ruby and diamond ring is set with an oval ruby weighing 13.26 carats, embellished with two rose-cut diamonds on the side and diamond-set prongs; the diamonds weighing approximately 10.50 carats in total, mounted in platinum.
Palllinghurst Resources, following its recent takeover of Gemfields, has appointed Sean Gilbertson as new CEO for the colored gemstone miner as it commences the acquisition process. The move follows the resignation of Gemfields' non-executive directors, including that of CEO Ian Harebottle, who has held the position for the last eight years. Harebottle, as well as the resigning board members, was highly crititical of the takeover, saying it "significantly undervalued" the company.
South African equity group Pallinghurst Resources Ltd. on June 26 announced it has received 96% of shareholder support in its quest to move ahead with a bid to fully acquire Gemfields, in which it is already the largest investor; more than 75% of Gemfields shareholders have given their acceptance for the offer. Last week, Pallinghurst lowered the minimum number of acceptances from shareholders of Gemfields Plc on its takeover offer to 60 percent, from 75 percent, making its offer unconditional. This move came after China's Fosun International raised its offer for the gemstone company.
Jeweller Harry Winston purchased the "Rockefeller Emerald", a flawless 18.04-carat Colombian emerald, for more than $5.5 million at Christie’s New York Magnificent Jewels auction.
China's Fosun International has increased its offer for UK gemstone miner and Fabergé owner Gemfields to $323 million (£256 million), and Gemfields is encouraging its minority shareholders to accept the takeover bid despite considering it unreasonable, in order to avoid an even more “derisory” buyout bid from its largest shareholder, Pallinghurst Resources. Last month, South African private equity group Pallinghurst made an unsolicited offer of 37.1p per share for the 62 per cent of Gemfields that it does not already own, offering investors no premium on the gemstone miner’s share price. In
Pallinghurst resources Ltd., a private equity firm focused on mining, who already own 47% of Gemfields Plc, made an offer to acquire the remaining 53% of the gemstone miner in a bid to restructure the company and make it more profitable. Pallinghurst offered investors nearly two shares in Pallinghurst for each share in the colored-stone producer, valuing the miner at $275.6 million. Gemfields’ board has advised its shareholders to not take any action at the moment while they review the offer.
The Tiffany & Co. Foundation, established to preserve the world’s most treasured land- and seascapes, granted University of Delaware’s Saleem Ali the funding to launch a knowledge hub for colored gemstones, including signature projects across the globe. This includes Madagascar and South Asia where the projects are focused on miner education as well as health and safety outreach.
Gübelin Gem Lab introduced the “Emerald Paternity Test”, a technology developed for tracing the origin of emeralds to their exact mine. They were able to do this by using nanotechnology to mark stones with an invisible imprint that is accessible at any stage of the supply chain. The technology is a “true game-changer for the colored-gemstone industry,” said the Switzerland-based laboratory.
In the upcoming eighth edition of BrilliAnt, the three-day Antwerp Diamond Trade Fair (ADTF), more than 95 exhibitors are expecting to receive hundreds of retail jewelers, leading designers, trend-setters and diamond buyers. The fair, which takes place from Sunday, 29 to Tuesday 31 January will be hosted in the historic trading halls of the Antwerp Diamond Bourses. It is a joint initiative of the Bourse, Club and the Antwerp Diamond Kring, and is powered by the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC).
Thirteen years after the the United States government initially banned the import of all gemstones from Burma (Myanmar) to put pressure on the military junta that had ignored democratic elections, placed Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi under house arrest, and persecuted minority groups throughout the country, U.S. sanctions on imports of the Burmese gemstones were officially lifted by an executive order on October 7.
Gemstone miner Gemfields reports a jump in revenue to $193.1 million for the year ended June 30 from $171.4 million a year before. Meanwhile profit after tax almost doubled from a year before to $23.5 million from $12.3 million. The firm had cash holdings of $41.5 million compared with $28.0 million and the cost of its gemstone and Fabergé inventory was $107.2 million from $101.1 million last year.
True North Gems Inc. said that True North Gems Greenland A/S (TNGG), the company's operating subsidiary in Greenland, has initiated voluntary bankruptcy proceedings under the Bankruptcy Act in Greenland. TNGG's main asset is the Aappaluttoq Ruby and Pink Sapphire deposit and mine in S.W Greenland. The company owns 76% of the outstanding shares of TNGG, LNS Denmark APS (together with its affiliates, the LNS Group) owns 17%, and Greenland Venture A/S (Greenland Venture) owns 7%.
A pair of Kashmir sapphires and a rare blue diamond are set to be the highlights of a Bonhams London sale as it starts the fall auction season with its Fine Jewellery auction on September 20. Headlining the sale is a oval-cut blue diamond weighing 3.81 carats. The Fancy Intense Blue diamond is accompanied by a GIA report and hails from a private British collection. Jean Ghika, Head of Jewellery for Bonhams UK & Europe, says: “Blue diamonds are extraordinarily rare and account for only 0.004% of all diamonds mined.
A fisherman in the Philippines has kept what is claimed to be the biggest natural pearl ever found hidden in his home for more than 10 years. The enormous pearl, which has not yet been confirmed as being one, is 30cm wide, 67cm long, and weighs 34kg. If it is confirmed to have formed within a giant clam, as has been widely reported, it could have a value of more than $100 million.
Gemfields has announced the finalization of four debt financing facilities for a total of $65 million, which are intended to provide financing for expansion plans to increase its ruby and emerald production. The loans entail a $45 million facility for the ruby operations, Montepuez Ruby Mining Lda, of which Gemfields owns 75%.
Gemfields plc reports record auction revenues of $44.3 million from a sale of rough ruby from the Montepuez mine in Mozambique. The June 13-19 auction in Singapore is the last auction the miner has planned for this financial year. The average realized price of the goods sold was $29.21 per carat, with 1,516,459 carats sold – 95% by weight and 98% by value – out of a total of 1,601,145 carats offered.
Gemfields has announced that it earned $14.3 million from its auction in Jaipur, India of predominantly lower quality rough emerald extracted by Kagem Mining Ltd (75% owned by Gemfields and 25% by the Government of the Republic of Zambia) in Zambia. The auction saw 3.67 million carats of lower quality emerald extracted from Kagem placed on offer, with 14 of the 18 lots offered being sold, generating auction revenues of $14.3 million. Gemfields claims that the auction represents a new record of $5.15 per carat for lower quality auctions.
Gemfields has named Sally Morrison director of marketing and sales, Americas. She was until recently the managing director of marketing at the Diamond Producers Association which aims to promote diamonds generically. She previously held senior roles with A Diamond Is Forever, Forevermark and the World Gold Council. Gemfields CEO Ian Harebottle said that Morrison's role "will be pivotal as we continue to expand and the U.S. announces several new marketing strategies.”
The Jubilee Ruby, a 15.99-carat Burmese ruby and diamond ring by Verdura, was bought at a Christie's auction in New York for $14,165,000, towards the high end of its pre-sale estimate of $12 million to $15 million. The price made it the highest-selling gemstone sold in the United States, Christie's reported.
Gemfields' auction of mostly higher quality rough emeralds from Kagem Mining Ltd from March 30 to April 3 in Lusaka, Zambia, posted auction revenues of $33.1 million, and a new record price per carat of $70.68 for higher quality auctions. Of the 558,000 carats offered for sale, 469,000 carats were sold (84%). The 21 Kagem auctions held since July 2009 have generated $412 million in total revenues. The $70.68 price is in stark contrast with the results of the first auction of Kagem goods of $4.40 per carat in July 2009.
In his latest blog, Leibish Polnauer, President of Leibish & Co. Fancy Color Diamonds, speaks about the importance of corporate social responsibility and the firm's association with colored gemstone miner Gemfields, which he says is the leading supplier of responsibly mined gemstones and aims for its operations to have a minimal on the environment as well improving the lot of people in the surrounding areas. Meanwhile, its pink diamonds all come from Rio Tinto’s Argyle diamond mine since the firm has high standards.
The number of exhibitors, buyers and visitors to the eight-day Baselworld tradeshow, which closed on March 24, declined by 3% on the 2015 show to 145,000 people from more than 100 countries, organizers said in a statement. There were also 4,400 media representatives, an increase of just over 2% from last year. Many attendees spoke of the reduced foot traffic, particularly in the halls where exhibitors of loose diamonds and gemstones were located.
The Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC) is to add colored gemstones to its material coverage following discussions with its members, external stakeholders and the colored-gemstone sector over the past five years, the trade body announced in a press release at the BaselWorld tradeshow. Currently, the RJC covers diamonds, gold and platinum-group metals. The RJC will next revise its code of practices in 2017.
Diamond companies exhibiting at the Hong Kong International Diamond, Gem and Pearl Show reported satisfactory activity in the opening days, with visitor traffic stronger than at last year's fair, Rapaport reported. The show for exhibitors of precious gems, semi-precious stones and pearls opened at the AsiaWorld Expo close to Hong Kong's airport on March 1 and runs until March 5.
Rob Bates of JCK tells the story behind gem explorer Yianni Melas' discovery of a new blue-green gemstone, baptized Aquaprase. "Two years ago," writes Bates, "veteran gem explorer Yianni Melas was doing some work at an African location - he doesn’t want to say where, so the area is not overrun. Geologists had dismissed the locale, convinced it held only some few stray opals.
Emerald and ruby miner Gemfields has released its results for H1 2015 that ended December 31, reporting revenue dropped 9.1% to $94 million comparted to the first half in 2014. Profit after tax fell 65% to $8.2 million, compared to $23.2 million a year previously. Emerald and beryl production from the Kagem mine in Zambia surged 30% to 15.7 million carats, while production of ruby and corundum from the Montepuez mine in Mozambique fell 67% to 2.1 million carats.
The American Gem Trade Association (AGTA) announced that it has amended its Code of Ethics and Principles of Fair Business Practice and presented recommended Source Disclosure language to the AGTA's strict Code of Ethics document. "For thirty five years, AGTA's Code of Ethics has served as a model for the entire industry", said AGTA CEO Douglas Hucker, and as a living document is was necessary and appropriate for us to amend them to strengthen our commitment to due diligence in the marketplace and to reflect our leadership role in the global efforts in supply chain integrity."
Despite low expectations among exhibitors at the seventh edition of the Antwerp Diamond Trade Fair (ADTF) following reports of a slow holiday sales season for European retail jewelers and diamond distributors, the overall mood "was distinctly upbeat', said the organizers of the January 31-February 2 trade show. The three-day fair is jointly organized by the Antwerp Diamond Bourse (Beurs voor Diamanthandel), the Diamond Club of Antwerp (Diamantclub van Antwerpen) and Antwerp's Rough Diamond Bourse (Antwerpsche Diamantkring) and held in the halls of the Bourse and the Club.
The Wall Street Journal writes that Gemfields PLC - a London-based company with the world’s largest emerald mine near Zambia’s border with the DRC - is "hoping to generate diamond-caliber demand for its emeralds and rubies." The Zambian operation has helped the company dominate a fast-growing and increasingly lucrative sector. Gemfields owns 75% of the Kagem mine, with the Zambian government owning the remainder.
Prices for fancy colored diamonds, especially blue diamonds, continue to climb. Just 30% of all mined diamonds are gem-quality and only 0.04% of diamonds mined are blue "and finding them is random. As a result of their incredible rarity and scarcity, they are fetching record prices," said auctions house, Bonhams London, Department Director Emily Barber. The auctioneer said it made jewelry auction history in 2015, setting four new world records in its New Bond Street salesroom.
Gemologists in Sri Lanka claim that the largest blue star sapphire ever found has been discovered in a mine in the country. A gemology institute in the capital Colombo has certified that the gem weighs 1,404.49 carats and says it has not certified anything larger, according to a BBC report. "The gem is valued at least $100 million and the current owner estimates that it could sell for up to $175 million at auction," according to the report. That would dwarf Sri Lanka's annual gem exports of $103 million.
Gemstone miner Gemfields reported revenues of $28.8 million at its fifth auction of rough rubies and corundum from the Montepuez mine in Mozambique at an average price of $317.92 per carat. The Singapore sale, held December 14 to 18, saw 36 companies placing bids with 45 of the 49 lots offered being sold, The five auctions of Montepuez goods held since June 2014 have generated $150.8 million in aggregate revenues. The miner's next auction will be of predominantly higher quality emerald from the Kagem mine in Zambia and is due to take place next March.
The trade organization will continue to admit exclusively trade visitors to the 2016 event, as in previous years. “Across all industries, there are regularly controversial discussions on the opening of trade shows to consumers,” said Klaus Dittrich, Chairman and CEO of Messe München. "INHORGENTA MUNICH has closely examined this topic, which is also of public interest. We would not like to follow the example of other trade shows blindly, but first and foremost take the best decision in the interest of our exhibitors and specialist dealers.
Industry body, the International Colored Gemstone Association (ICA), has signed a memorandum of understanding to open a gem-grading lab in Bangkok next year, ICA President Benjamin Hackman told JCK. Arrangements are still being finalized, he said, adding that the ICA will not run the lab but will license its name to Chinese gem dealer Chang Hatta. ICA will receive royalties from the lab, and its members will receive discounts. With an increasing need for colored stone reports, there is a strong need for more gemstone labs, Hackman commented.