Anglo American group company De Beers has empowered its South African diamond trading business in a deal worth R2.5 billion.
Black-controlled Ponahalo Holdings, which owned 26% of the mining operation, has now also gained a 26% stake in De Beers’ South African diamond sales business five months before a government deadline to meet the regulations of the mining charter. De Beers Consolidated Mines (DBCM), the South African mining business of De Beers, has bought De Beers Sightholder Sales South Africa (DBSSSA) for about R2.5 billion.
“Our clients in the diamond cutting industry will also benefit as they will be transacting with an empowered mining and trading company going forward,” said DBCM executive chairman Barend Petersen.
De Beers’ operations in South Africa accounted for about 4.7 million carats last year out of a total 31.2 million mined by the company, and the transaction is taking place at a time of growing diamond jewellery demand.
“There is reason to be optimistic about diamond demand continuing,” Petersen said. “Economic recovery is underway in the US where demand for diamond jewellery rose 7% last year and diamond consumption continued rising in emerging markets such as China.”
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