Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Massive Rough Diamond Found: 185 Carats Too much for an Engagement Ring?

Diamonds are for engagement rings, because diamonds are forever. But every now and then, a diamond is found that is too big for even the most outrageous engagement ring. Such is the case of the latest diamond announcement to come out of The Kingdom of Lesotho, near South Africa.

Gem Diamonds Ltd., a London based diamond mining company, has announced the latest discovery from their Letseng mine in Lesotho; a 185 carat rough diamond.

Upon early analysis, it is believed that the massive stone, once polished will produce diamonds of top color and clarity, according to the company’s CEO Clifford Elphick. Elphick spoke of the diamond’s quality, which is “expected to achieve a substantial price per carat,” in a statement on November 2.

This latest find was unearthed in the same mine that produced a 196 carat rough diamond, discovered this past August, the value of which is estimated to be as much as $11.8 million.

Gem Diamonds LTD. currently holds 70% of Letseng, which have produced 3 of the 20 largest diamonds to be discovered, worldwide, since 2006, including the famous Lesotho Promise diamond.

Found in August of 2006, the Lesotho Promise was a 603 carat rough diamond that sold to the South African Diamond Corporation at auction for $12.4 million, and was expected to sell for around $20 million after cutting. It was the largest reported diamond discovery this century, and the 15th largest ever.

In 2007, the finished diamonds cut from the Promise, 26 in total, were revealed; the largest of which was a 75 carat Pear Shaped diamond, and the smallest a .55 carat Round Brilliant.
Alison Turner, an analyst at Panmure Gordon and Co., wrote in a report this past September, that this latest diamond discovery could be worth anywhere from $6 million to $10 million.

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