London, England — MININGREVIEW.COM — 01 March 2010 – Petra Diamonds – one of the world’s largest independent diamond groups by resources – has announced the sale of the 507-carat Cullinan Heritage for US$35.3 million (R264.75 million) “’ the highest sale price on record for a rough diamond.
A statement issued by the company here said the diamond had been sold on tender in South Africa, and had been purchased by Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Company Limited of Hong Kong. The purchaser has not at this stage advised Petra of its plans for the diamond.
The statement added that the price achieved for the stone reflected the incredible rarity of the diamond, which combined its remarkable size with exceptional colour and clarity, and at 507.5 carats it was the nineteenth largest gem diamond ever discovered.
The Cullinan Heritage was recovered in September 2009 from Petra’s Cullinan mine in South Africa, which has produced the majority of the world’s most famous and important diamonds.
The proceeds from the sale of the stone will add to Petra’s treasury and give the company further flexibility in funding the development of the underground operations at Cullinan, as well as the expansion project at its Williamson mine in Tanzania, both of which are important steps in taking Petra’s annual production from the current one million carats to over three million carats by 2019.
Petra CEO Johan Dippenaar commented. “It is fitting that the Cullinan Heritage should achieve the highest sale price ever achieved for a rough diamond, as it has the potential to produce one of the world’s most important polished gems. The sale proceeds further bolster Petra’s treasury and will be invested in the growth of our core assets.”