GEM Diamonds said it had recovered a 442 carat diamond from its Letšeng mine in Lesotho which it described as one of the largest gem quality diamonds to be recovered this year.
A portion of proceeds generated from the sale of the diamond would be used to fund a special community project in terms of an agreement with the Lesotho government.
“The recovery of this remarkable 442 carat diamond, one of the world’s largest gem quality diamonds to be recovered this year, is further confirmation of the calibre of the Letšeng mine and its ability to consistently produce large, high quality diamonds,” said Clifford Elphick, CEO of GEM Diamonds in a statement.
“It is also a fitting testament to the dedication of the employees in the group to have recovered such an extraordinary diamond, whilst at the same time maintaining strict adherence to health and safety precautions during the global Covid-19 pandemic,” he said.
Letšeng is renowned for producing high quality gems.
GEM sold 16 diamonds for more than $10m each, generating $29.4m in the first half of its 2020 financial year (2019: $26.6m), according to interim results announced in July. The average price for the period was $1,707 per carat ($1,576/carat), it said.
GEM subsequently ended the period on June 30 with $17.5m in cash of which $13.8m is attributable to GEM Diamonds. Utilised debt totalled $23m resulting in net debt of $5.5m compared to net debt as of December 31 of $10.1m, the company said.