Gemfields Emerald Auction Realizes $33 Million

Lusaka: Emerald and ruby miner Gemfields has announced that its recent emerald auction held in Lusaka, Zambia, realized $33.1 million.

Of the 558,000 carats of Kagem Mining Ltd emeralds up for sale, 496,000 or 84 percent were sold. This most recent auction now holds the record for the highest average price, $70.68 per carat, for higher quality auctions. Gemfields’ 21 Kagem auctions held since July 2009 have generated $412 million.

At the same event, the company also auctioned higher quality amethyst mined by Kariba Minerals Ltd, in which Gemfields holds a 50-percent interest. The amethyst auction saw 9.4 million carats placed on offer, of which 6.6 million carats were sold. Of the 14 lots 8 were sold, generating auction revenues of $220,000 or $3.26 per carat.

Gemfields’ next auction is expected to be of lower quality emerald and beryl from the Kagem emerald mine in Zambia and is slated to take place in Jaipur, India.

“Our return to Lusaka has delivered another strong – and indeed record – result at a time when global commodity and diamond prices remain volatile and uncertain,” said Gemfields CEO Ian Harebottle.

“Demand for – and prices of – emeralds clearly remain as robust as ever and gemstone mining represents one of the healthier segments of the sector. We’re delighted that, in collaboration with our partners, the Government of the Republic of Zambia, the Kagem and Kariba operations continue to perform strongly.”