Just four months after selling a 29.6 carat blue diamond from its Cullinan mine in South Africa for more than US$25million, Petra Diamonds has recovered a 122.52 carat blue diamond from the same mine.
Announcing the recovery in an official statement, Petra Diamonds said “the rarity of a blue diamond of this magnitude sets it apart as a truly significant find” but “the stone will require further analysis in order to assess its potential value”.
“Upon completion of this process, Petra will be in a position to evaluate its optimal route to market,” the London-listed company said.
“The diamond will therefore not be sold before the end of the company’s current financial year.”
Located at the foothills of the Magaliesberg mountain range, 37 kilometres north-east of Pretoria in South Africa, Cullinan is one of the world’s most celebrated diamond mines.
It earned its place in history with the discovery of the Cullinan diamond in 1905, the largest rough gem diamond ever found at 3106 carats. This iconic stone was cut into the two most important diamonds which form part of the Crown Jewels in the Tower of London – the First Star of Africa, which is mounted at the top of the Sovereign’s Sceptre and which at 530 carats is the largest flawless cut diamond in the world, and the Second Star of Africa, a 317 carat polished diamond which forms the centrepiece of the Imperial State Crown.
Cullinan is also known as the world’s most important source of blue diamonds and since Petra acquired the mine in 2008, it has produced a number of exceptional blues including
- A 39.9 carat diamond which sold for US$8.8 million (or US$220,551 per carat) in 2008.
- A 26.6 carat diamond which yielded a fancy vivid blue and internally flawless 7.0 carat polished stone. The stone sold for US$9.49 million (or US$1.35 million per carat) at a Sotheby’s auction in 2009 and was subsequently named the ‘Star of Josephine’ by its new owner.
- A 25.5 carat diamond which sold for US$16.9 million (or US$663,144 per carat) in 2013.
- A 29.6 carat diamond which sold for US$25.6 million (or US$862,780 per carat) in February 2014.