A spectacular and comprehensive trove of nearly 400 diamonds, colored stones and the finest jeweled objects from the Mughal Empire (1526-1857) to the present day, with provenance including the royal and noble families of India, will be offered in a landmark auction this June at Christie's in New York. Christie’s anticipates the Maharajas & Mughal Magnificence jewelry auction could rank as one of its most high-profile and high-value jewelry auctions ever, featuring some incredible dia
Billions of dollars’ worth of gold is being smuggled out of Africa every year through the United Arab Emirates, a Reuters analysis has found. In a devastating exclusive report (and video), authors David Lewis, Ryan McNeill and Zandi Shabalala write that customs data shows the UAE imported $15.1 billion worth of gold from Africa in 2016, more than any other country and up from $1.3 billion in 2006, but much of the gold was not recorded in the exports of African states.
Botswana's state-run Okavango Diamond Company today (April 17) unveiled the polished result of what is said to be the largest blue diamond ever discovered in the southern African country, one of the world’s top producers. The 20.46-carat, oval-shape fancy colored diamond, fashioned from a 41.11-carat rough stone recovered on May 21 2018 at the Orapa mine, has been named "The Okavango Blue" in honor of the Okavango Delta, the country's wildlife-rich world heritage site.
As the Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company (ZCDC) sifts through the wreckage of the devastating Cyclone Idai - which has already claimed the lives of nearly 1,000 people in Mozambique, Zimbabwe and Malawi, displacing hundreds of thousands, destroying crops and leading to a cholera outbreak - preliminary indications are that the firm will miss its first quarter production target due to the cyclone and other challenges, including fuel shortages and effects of the January 14-16 violent demonstrations.
The 'Spectacular 88.22-Carat Oval Diamond', said to be perfect according to every critical criterion, sells at the Sotheby's Hong Kong auction for HK$108 million/US$13.8 million to a Japanese private collector who names the stone the 'Manami Star', after his eldest daughter.
Nirav Modi, who allegedly defrauded Indian state-run Punjab National Bank (PNB) of $2 billion, was arrested and denied bail by a London judge who said there were "substantial risks" that the celebrity jeweler could flee while the country seeks his extradition. Modi was arrested in central London on Tuesday evening on behalf of Indian authorities who want to extradite him to face charges.
UK newspaper The Telegraph found India's most wanted man, Nirav Modi, openly walking the streets of London, allegedly living in an £8 million ($10.4 million) apartment in London’s West End and apparetly running another diamond business. Nirav Modi fled India last year after becoming a suspect in the biggest banking fraud in the country’s history. A diamond jeweller whose designs have been worn by Hollywood stars, Modi went on the run after being accused of defrauding the Punjab National Bank of roughly $2 billion.
Described as “perfect according to every critical criterion,” an 88.22-carat diamond will go under the hammer at Sotheby’s Hong Kong, with the auction house expecting the oval-cut gem to fetch as much as HK$100 million (about US$12.7 million). According to an announcement released by Sotheby’s yesterday, the stone is one of only three oval-cut diamonds with a weight greater than 50 carats “to appear at auction in living memory, and the largest to be auctioned in over five years.” The 88.22-carat, D Colour, Flawless, Type IIa, Oval Brilliant Diamond will hit the auction block at Sotheby’s Ho
The 24-carat pear-shaped, fancy yellow Moon of Baroda diamond famed for its association with Marilyn Monroe sold for $1.3 million at the Christie’s Hong Kong jewelry auction on Tuesday, easily beating estimates of $500,000 to $750,000.
Christie’s in Hong Kong will auction on 27 November the 24.04-carat pear-shaped, Fancy Yellow Moon of Baroda diamond Marilyn Monroe wore to promote the release of the Howard Hawk’s 1953 film, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. It could be value anywhere from $500,000 to $750,000, perhaps more. Christie’s will also auction an autographed photo of the actress wearing the stone. The picture has a presale valuation of $10,000 to $15,000.
A nationwide crackdown on diamond shop owners and potentially illicit dealers in Angola last week led to four people being killed and seven injured in the Lunda Norte province bordering the Democratic Republic of Congo. The incidents occured on the margins of a police operation targeting foreign nationals suspected of diamond smuggling, media said last Friday.
Christie's has announced that the 18.96-carat Pink Legacy – the largest and finest Fancy Vivid Pink diamond the auctioneer has ever put on the block – will be offered for sale at their Magnificent Jewels auction in Geneva on 13 November. With an estimated price of $30 million to $50 million, it has the potential to break the record price per carat for its color category. That record is currently held by ‘The Pink Promise’, an oval-shaped Fancy Vivid Pink diamond of just under 15 carats, which Christie's sold in Hong Kong last year for $32,480,500 - an incredible $2,175,519 per carat.
According to new research from Euromonitor International, India is set to overtake US as the world's second largest fine jewelry market by the end of 2018, reports Business Matters. The study shows that China remains the biggest market for fine jewelry with sales reaching US$86.3 billion by the end of 2017, which are expected to reach US$92 billion by the end of this year. The Chinese market as a whole has grown by over 21% in the last five years.
The World Federation of Diamond Bourses (WFDB) has responded to the revised U.S. Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) guidelines released last week as they relate to the issue of descriptors for diamonds. The industry body regrets the "bias towards the lab-grown diamond sector", said WFDB President Ernie Blom, adding, "we do not feel that the views of the diamond sector were taken sufficiently into account", and called for the FTC to revisit their decision.
In what can only be described as a victory for laboratory-grown diamond producers, the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has dropped the word 'natural' from its definition of a diamond, essentially redefining 'diamond' to include non-mined gemstones, as part its new guides for the jewelry industry. It further gives additional leeway to existing standards regarding the description of lab-grown diamonds (and metal alloys), and has dropped 'synthetic' as an appropriate descriptor of lab-grown diamonds except under certain circumstances.
De Beers Canada and Peregrine Diamonds Ltd. today announced they have entered into an agreement whereby De Beers will acquire 100% of the outstanding shares of Peregrine for $0.24 per share in cash for a total equity value of approximately C$107 million (US$81 million). Peregrine Diamonds is a TSX-listed diamond exploration and development company and owner of the high quality Chidliak diamond resource located in Canada’s Nunavut Territory.
India has been informed by the UK's Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) that it can initiate extradition proceedings against Indian diamantaire Nirav Modi even though his exact whereabouts remain uncertain, a senior Indian official said today. According to Indian daily The Times of India, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has begun the process of filing an extradition request for Modi, which will then have to be approved by the UK Home Office following which an extradition warrant can be issued.
João Lourenço, the President of the world’s fifth largest diamond-producing country, Angola, today paid a ceremonious visit to the world’s largest diamond trade center, Antwerp - his first visit to an international diamond trade hub. In what was initially described as a friendly, exploratory house-call, President Lourenço made it clear that he views his visit to Antwerp as part of his intention to increase transparency and promote the country ́s image abroad in order to facilitate the exportation of goods and services and attract direct foreign investment.
“We are not planning to change our strategy, integrate in the new market (synthetic product market) and launch our own synthetic production, or sell lab-grown diamonds. It is obvious that ALROSA as a diamond producer and one of the founders of Diamond Producers Association (DPA) hopes that this initiative will lead to differentiation of diamonds and synthetic stones, underlining the status of synthetics as a distinct low-price product.
De Beers this morning dropped a bomb on the diamond jewelry world with the announcement that they are launching a new brand of fashion jewelery containing laboratory-grown diamonds (LGDs). Called Lightbox Jewelry, the new brand will offer consumers LGDs in high quality designs for casual, everyday occasions at lower prices than existing LGD offerings. "Lightbox will bring something entirely new and innovative to LGDs, by combining colour and sparkle in fashion jewellery, and at very accessible retail prices", the miner writes in a document sent to stakeholders.
Global consumer demand for diamond jewelry hit a new all-time high in 2017, climbing to US$82 billion, a two percent increase on the previous year, according to industry insight data published today by De Beers Group. The US was the main driver of growth for the fourth consecutive year, De Beers writes, where positive macroeconomics and strong consumer confidence - which recently hit an 18-year high - saw demand for diamond jewelry increase four percent to $43 billion, representing more than half of total global demand.
Sotheby's Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels auction held in Geneva yesterday, May 15, certainly lived up to its name, as the historic Farnese Blue diamond - given in 1715 by the Philippines to the Queen of Spain Elisabeth Farnese, wife of King Philip V of Spain - smashed its pre-sale estimate of $3.7 to $5.3 million, earning $6.7 million at the fall of the hammer. It was the first time the exceptional 6.16-carat, pear-shaped, fancy dark grey-blue, SI1-clarity stone had ever appeared on the market, after having remained in the same family for over three centuries.
In what it is hailing as an industry first, De Beers Group yesterday announced it has successfully tracked 100 high-value diamonds along the value chain during the pilot of its industry blockchain platform, tracking a diamond’s journey digitally from mine to retail. An immutable and secure digital trail was created for a selection of rough diamonds mined by De Beers as they moved from the mine to cutter and polisher, then through to a jeweller. The platform, called Tracr, is expected to launch later this year and will be open to the industry.
In celebration of the launch of its spring campaign, "Believe In Dreams", as well as their largest new jewelry collection in nearly a decade, “Tiffany Paper Flowers”, Tiffany and Co. has transformed its corner of New York City with its iconic blue hue. Tiffany & Co's marketing blitz took a New York icon, the city's famed yellow cabs, and painted them with the brand's trademark robin's egg blue.
The line-up of European Regional Supporters of the 2018 FIFA World Cup has been completed today as Russia’s ALROSA, a giant in the world diamond mining industry, joined Alfa-Bank, Rostelecom and Russian Railways, according to a statement from the football organization. As part of their deal with FIFA, ALROSA has been granted brand association rights for the region and promotion rights on social media. They will be featured on LED boards in all stadiums during the tournament and benefit from product exposure in selected areas of the FIFA World Cup venues.
A 3.09-carat rectangular-cut Fancy Intense Blue diamond sold for more than $5.375 million at Christie’s New York Magnificent Jewels auction last Tuesday, setting a world record price for an intense blue diamond at $1.739 million per carat, nearly doubling its pre-sale high estimate of $2-$3 million.
Sotheby's Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels auction to be held in Geneva on 15 May will feature some remarkable diamonds, most notably two large D flawless diamonds, each weighing over 50 carats, and the historic and highly important Farnese Blue, a Fancy Dark Grey-Blue diamond weighing 6.16 carats. Both of the diamonds belong to the highly rarefied sub-category of Type IIa diamonds, which make up just 2% of gem diamonds and boast the highest optical transparency. The first
The trade is facing its #MeToo moment after stories of degrading behavior emerge. In her blog and trade journal Barbara Palumbo, who has spent 30 years in the jewelry and watch industry, wrote about the prevalence of sexual harassment in the industry — “Women deal with this literally every single day in our industry”.
One of the foremost historic diamonds – The Farnese Blue – will appear on the market for the first time in history this spring, after having remained in the same family for over three centuries, according to a press release from Sotheby's auction house. The existence of the diamond was apparently unknown until recently, except for the relatives of the family and its jewellers.
The Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) took part in the first Belgian State Visit to Canada (BELCAN 2018) in over 40 years, joining the King and Queen of the Belgians, Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders and Secretary of State for Foreign Trade Pieter De Crem, along with 100 major Belgian companies. Diamonds are the most important product in the trade relations between Belgium and Canada, representing 21% of all Canadian imports to Belgium. Canada is the third largest diamond producing country (in value) worldwide, and Belgium is the world's leading importer of Canadian diamonds.
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 United Nations General Assembly, welcoming progress made by the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme to break links between the diamond trade and conflict, on March 7 adopted a consensus resolution aimed at intensifying that work and aligning it with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Diamonds and other precious stones forming part of a Czech National Museum collection in Prague, assumed to be worth millions of dollars, were discovered during a routine audit to be fakes and synthetics. The cheap imitations include a 5-carat diamond, which is just a piece of glass, and a 19-carat sapphire which turned out to be synthetic. As told by Radio Praha, "The major reconstruction of the headquarters of the National Museum in Prague has revealed more than just peeling paint and cracks in the walls.
Firestar Diamond, a company owned by Nirav Modi, the billionaire jeweller at the heart of a $2 billion fraud case in India, has filed for bankruptcy in a New York court, as investigators stepped up their investigation into a case that has stunned the country of India. Firestar Diamond, which on its website states that its operations span the US, Europe, the Middle East, the Far East and India, blamed liquidity and supply chain challenges. It listed up to $100 million in assets and debt, the court document said.
The Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC), the industry organization representing the interests of 1,600 diamond companies in Antwerp, has appointed Nishit (Bali) Parikh as its new President, replacing outgoing President Stéphane Fischler. The Board of Directors also appointed Freddy Inzlicht and Samir Mehta as Vice-Presidents, respectively representing the bourses and the trade.
On Saturday, February 17, 2018, India's Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) released a statement on the incidents that have recently come to light with regards to the alleged fraud committed by two members of the Council. They state: "The Nirav Modi/Gitanjali Gems incident is of concern to the entire Gems & Jewellery industry. The Industry strongly condemns any sort of unlawful & illegal actions by any individual, trade or otherwise.
Sergey Ivanov, CEO of ALROSA, held a working meeting in Moscow today with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of the Kingdom of Belgium Didier Reynders, and President of the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) Stephane Fischler. The parties discussed issues related to the development of bilateral cooperation in the field of diamond trading, as well as cooperation within the framework of industry international organizations. ALROSA and AWDC made a joint presentation focusing on their excellent trade relationship and expressed their willingness to enhance their
The second edition of The World’s Premier Diamond Event, CARAT+, will open at the Antwerp Expo Belgium on May 6, introducing new show features and welcoming leading industry professionals from across the globe. Launched for the first time in 2017, CARAT+ won the praise of exhibitors and visitors alike with its glamorous trade show floor and 130 leading exhibitors from 13 countries.
Russian diamond miner ALROSA Group’s FY 2017 diamond production totalled 39.6 million carats, up by 6% year-on-year from the 37.4 million carats mined in 2016, the company announced today. Indicatively, ALROSA Group reports that it sold 41.2 million carats of diamonds in 2017 compared to 40.1 million carats in 2016, though the revenue from those sales fell by approximately 4.5% to $4.3 billion from $4.5 billion. Rough diamond sales amounted to $4.2 billion ($4.4 billion in 2016) while polished diamonds sales achieved $96.9 million ($122.3 million in 2016).
Russian diamond giant ALROSA has announced plans to open an office in India to monitor the local market, tagging Jim Vimadalal, who previously worked at Indian offices of Rio Tinto and Swarovski, as Director of ALROSA's representative office in Mumbai. The representative office won't be engaged in trading activity, but will rather focus on cooperating with local industry organizations and advising current clients of the company on different technical issues, the company said. He will also negotiate with potential clients and monitor the condition of Indian diamond market.
The Gem & Jewellery Export Promotion Council has announced that Pramod Kumar Agarwal has been elected as Chairman and Colin Shah as Vice Chairman of GJEPC for the period from 2018 to 2020. Both have been working in the industry for a number of decades, and have held various positions of responsibility in GJEPC committees over the years. The new Chairman Pramod Kumar Agarwal said, “I am committed to developing a favorable environment for the gem & jewellery trade and business during my tenure.
The U.S. sanctioned Israeli billionaire Dan Gertler, one of the biggest individual mining and diamond investors in the Democratic Republic of Congo, in what it calls a clampdown on human-rights abusers and corrupt actors, write Thomas Biesheuvel, Mark Burton, and William Clowes for Bloomberg Politics. The U.S. Treasury said Gertler has used his close relationship with the country’s president, Joseph Kabila, to amass a fortune through corrupt and opaque deals.
Angolan state-owned diamond company Sodiam will divest a stake in Geneva-based jewelry maker De Grisogono - a Swiss firm controlled by the husband of the billionaire daughter (Isabel) of former president Jose Eduardo dos Santos - for “reasons of public interest and legality,” report Henrique Almeida and Candido Mendes for Bloomberg Markets. The move comes, the journalists write, as Angola’s new leader, President Joao Lourenco, untangles the country from the business interests of his predecessor’s family.
An incredibly rare 14.93-carat Fancy Vivid VVS1 pink diamond, which Rahul Kadakia, International Head of Jewellery at Christie’s, described as the "Picasso of the Pink Diamond world," sold for $31,861,000 (HKD 250 million), or approximately $2.13 million per carat, at Christie’s Magnificent Jewels Hong Kong auction on November 28. The diamond, referred to as The Pink Promise Diamond, is an oval-shaped fancy vivid pink Type IIa diamond, weighing approximately 14.93 carats, set within a circular-cut diamond surround, gallery and hoop. Its Fancy Vivid Pink color (as opposed to Fancy Intense Pink) is a designation given by the GIA and represents the most prized color grading in a pink diamond.
The African Diamond Conference (ADC), a joint initiative of Belgium's Federal Public Service (FPS) Foreign Affairs and the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC), took place yesterday at the Egmont Palace in Brussels. With nearly 400 in attendance, the ADC featured a broad range of speakers from across the entire diamond pipeline - from mine to finger - as well as diamond industry stakeholders.
In honor of Antwerp’s celebration of its 570-years of unbroken diamond trading, the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) is hosting an African Diamond Conference. The 3-day conference commenced last night with an exclusive gala welcoming African mining ministers and key members of the global diamond industry to Antwerp.
A legendary 19.07 carat pink diamond of historic Royal French provenance will be offered for sale at Christie’s Magnificent Jewels auction in Geneva on 14 November 2017, the auction house reports in a press release. The magnificent stone has been in the collection of four kings, four queens, two emperors and two empresses, starting with the Sun King, Louis XIV. It is one of France’s most storied gems, with three centuries of royal provenance.
As Bloomberg first reported last week, Exelco North America, the local branch of the prominent Belgian diamond company Exelco NV, has filed for bankruptcy protection in the U.S. in an apparent attempt to prevent KBC Bank from liquidating the company's assests. Back in June, Belgian bank KBC Group NV seized assets from Exelco in an attempt to recover unpaid loans, according to court documents.
A massive emerald-cut diamond fashioned from Lucapa Diamond's 404 carat rough stone - the largest rough diamond ever recovered in Angola - will go under the hammer on November 14 at Christie’s in Geneva. "Set into an asymmetric necklace designed by de GRISOGONO, this 163.41 carat, flawless D-colour emerald-cut diamond is the largest ever to come to auction", reads the press release from the auction house. In February 2016, Lucapa Diamond Company announced the discovery of the biggest recorded diamond in Angola, confirmed as a Type IIa D-color gem-quality stone.
The Antwerp World Diamond Centre today organized a festive launch of the Diamond Year celebrating 570 years of unbroken diamond trading in the city, sealing its place as the diamond capital of the world. The celebration was attended by Belgium's Secretary of State for Foreign Trade Pieter De Crem, fifteen ambassadors from diamond-related countries and featured 57 cakes - one for each decade of diamond trading in Antwerp, and, coincidentally, one for each facet of a brilliant cut diamond.
London-listed Petra Diamonds said on Wednesday it had received authorization from the Tanzanian government to resume diamond exports and sales from the Williamson mine. Shares in Petra Diamonds climbed more than 12% from two-year lows following the annoucement. The company said the timing and process for the next diamond export to the company’s office in Antwerp and the sale would be finalized between the company and the government. Petra said no resolution had been reached over the 71,654.45 carat shipment from the Williamson mine that was blocked for export this month.
At long last, Lucara Diamond has sold the 1,109 carat Lesedi La Rona - the largest rough diamond in existence - recovered from the Karowe mine in Botswana on November 16 2015, for $53 million ($47,777 per carat) to Graff Diamonds.
Government authorities in Tanzania have seized a shipment of diamonds belonging to London-based Petra Diamonds, saying the miner under-declared the value of its mineral exports. On August 31, customs seized a parcel containing 71,654 carats rough gems at the Dar Es Salam airport as they were being exported to Antwerp by Williamson Diamonds, in which Petra holds a 75% stake and the Tanzanian State 25%.