London—Gem Diamonds is starting the year with the recovery of some nice pink ice.

The diamond miner announced earlier this month that it recovered a high-quality 13.33-carat Type I pink diamond, pictured here, from the Letšeng mine in Lesotho.

20190225 Pink diamond extra
It is the first stone of significance (weighing more than 10.8 carats) Gem Diamonds has reported finding so far in 2019.

Pink diamonds have been selling for premium prices as of late, especially as the auction market drives prices upward. In fact, it was a 4.06-carat pink that achieved Gem Diamonds’ highest per-carat price last year, selling for $64,067 per carat.

The unearthing of the 13.33-carat pink is just the latest in a number of exceptional rough diamond recoveries for Gem Diamonds.
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In its fourth quarter and full year operational results released Feb. 7, the company said it recovered 15 diamonds weighing more than 100 carats in 2018, setting a record for the miner.

They included the “Lesotho Legend,” a 910-carat rough white diamond found at Letšeng in January 2018 and sold at tender two months later for $40 million, or $43,956 per carat.

Gem Diamonds’ production also was up year-over-year, with total carat recovery increasing 13 percent to 126,875.

During the fourth quarter, the company sold 33,240 carats, up 9 percent from the third quarter.

It sold nine diamonds for more than $1 million each in the period, generating revenue of $14.6 million, with a total of 44 diamonds sold for $1 million-plus each on the year, generating revenue of $137.2 million.

The average price per carat for the year was $2,131, up 10 percent from $1,930 in 2017.

Gem Diamonds acquired the Letšeng mine in mid-2006. The miner also operates the Ghaghoo diamond mine in Botswana, which it took ownership of in May 2007.

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