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Insofu Emerald rough (6100ct) sold to India-Based Gemstone dealer & Retailer DiaColor
Pastures are looking greener for Gemfields after the Pallinghurst takeover. The recently held auction in Lusaka reported great results.
By: Diamond World News Service
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Oct 13 2017 4:02PM
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Reference: 15700  

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Rajkumar Tongya, chairman of DiaColor
Rajkumar Tongya, chairman of DiaColor

The first Gemfields auction took place after the official takeover of the company by Pallinghurst, a South African based fund in June. The auction of high quality rough emeralds that took place in Lusaka, Zambia during the first week of October reported strong results.

 Among many emeralds that were sold, a very rare, high-quality Zambian emerald was sold to India-based DiaColor for an undisclosed amount. The 6100-carat gemstone was discovered at the Kagem mine in 2010 and named “Insofu,” which means “baby elephant” in the local Bema language, by Gemfields to reflect its wildlife conservation efforts.  The emerald was categorized as “exceptional” by Gemfields due its colour, clarity and size.

“This is one of the best pieces I have seen. It has a beautiful history. The sheer size makes it a rare stone and on top of that it has beautiful quality: it has gem green; top green in lustre. It has glamour; it has a history and I am very proud of it. It is of course very high value but it is priceless for me.”

“It’s a museum piece for me; I don’t want to sell it. I would like to enjoy keeping it,” said Rajkumar Tongya, chairman of DiaColor, a family-run business that has been operating for four generations.

 The auction projected revenues of $21.5 million from the sale and the average price per carat was reported to be $66.21. This is the second highest price in the history of emerald auctions held in the past.

 All of the emeralds put on auction were sold and only 320,000 carats were on sale. This is a very small number when compared to the carats that have been on sale in the past. But Kagem has been under the microscope for its scarce production for some time now.

Insofu was mined in 2010 at Kagem, the world's single largest producing emerald mine, which is owned 75 per cent by London-based Gemfields, in partnership with the Zambian government.

The emerald was named by Gemfields to reflect the company's support for wildlife conservation as part of its wider commitment to ensuring responsible mining through social, environmental and economic contributions to Zambia.

“This is a truly remarkable example of a spectacular gemstone from the Kagem emerald mine. We have rarely seen this in the seven-and-a-half years since we mined it in 2010; it’s an incredible piece and it’s definitely in the right hands,” said Gemfields Chief Executive Officer Sean Gilbertson, who congratulated Tongya and all the other participants of the auction, at which all lots were sold.

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