Lucapa Diamond Company in a press release dated May 19, 2015, announced the sale of a fourth parcel of diamonds from its Lulo Diamond Concession in Angola, realizing gross proceeds of A$2.9 million (US$2.3 million), as alluvial mining operations at the project continue to expand further. The average price-per-carat of the 1,539-carat parcel works out to A$1,870 (US$1,500), which is more than 12 times the average global diamond sale price of US$120/carat. This clealy demonstrates the exceptional quality and premium value of the alluvial diamonds mined by Lucapa and its partners at Lulo in Angola. As with previous sales, the sale of the fourth parcel of Lulo diamonds was also conducted by the Angolan Government diamond marketing arm SODIAM in the Angolan capital of Luanda.
According to the company, the total gross proceeds generated by the sale of the four parcels of Lulo diamonds with a total weight of 3,856 carats is A$9.7 million (US$7.7), which works out to an average overall price-per-carat of A$2,500 (US$2,000). The inclusion of the 63.05 carat, Type IIa, D-colour diamond recovered at Lulo in April 2015 from mining area 31 and several other special stones greater then 10 carats in weight, contributed significantly to the overall price realized at the sales.
The company reveals that as at the end of April 2015, it has recovered 30 special diamonds during exploration, bulk sampling and mining, at Lulo, with an average stone size of 27.8 carats. The production also includes a significant proportion of Type IIa stones, as well as rare fancy colored diamonds such as pink and yellow diamonds. Interestingly, the successful sale of the fourth parcel of Lulo diamond production, appears to coincide with the beginning of alluvial mining at the high-grade BLK-08 area at Lulo, the area that produced the largest and most valuable diamond, recovered during the exploration bulk sampling phase at Lulo – a 131.4 carat D-color, Type IIa gem.
According to Lucapa Chief Executive Officer, Stephen Wetherall, the fourth sale of Lulo diamonds provided further evidence of the strong and regular cash flows being generated from alluvial mining at Lulo, which commenced in January 2015.
He further said, “The sale prices we are achieving highlight the financial significance of recovering large special diamonds on a regular basis – as we are doing at Lulo – and gives us further confidence that we are on track to achieve our previously stated objective of becoming cash flow positive by the end of this Quarter. With the Angolan wet season behind us, we also are now very excited to be moving our alluvial mining operations to high-grade diamond zones such as BLK-08 and BLK-06 & 19 – where we have previously recovered several large special stones during our bulk sampling programs. We hope to be in a position to offer our next parcel of Lulo diamonds for sale in June 2015, in line with our strategy of generating sustainable long-term cash flows from regular diamond sales. The exceptional average sale prices we continue to achieve for Lulo diamonds also enhances the potential upside of our kimberlite exploration program, which aims to find the primary hard-rock sources of these rare and valuable alluvial diamonds.”