Pallinghurst Resources Limited, which wholly owns coloured gemstone producer Gemfields, announced that its ninth auction of ruby rough from its 75-percent-owned Montepuez mine in Mozambique, which ran from November 6 to 10, generated $54.96 million — the highest figure attained at any Gemfields auction to date.
An average price of $90.81 per carat was achieved, translating to a 49 percent premium over the last auction of similar qualities in June 2017. However, Gemfields said, given that the quality mix offered at this auction comprised a blend of varying qualities and sizes of material, a direct top-line comparison with the results of previous auctions is not feasible. On a quality-for-quality basis however, the per carat prices demonstrated strong demand.
The nine Montepuez auctions held since June 2014 have generated $335 million in aggregate revenues. This one saw 71 of the 76 lots on offer — 605,229 carats of the 682,582 carats on offer — being sold.
The latest auction saw 54 companies placing bids. The auction offered high, medium and commercial grade rough rubies in both untreated and treated form. All treated lots were offered using industry-accepted treatment and on a fully disclosed basis.
Gemfields said that the consistency of supply and the reliability of its grading system continues to be well received by buyers as it reduces risk, improves manufacturing efficiencies and increases ability to meet consumer demand.
Company CEO Sean Gilbertson commented, “The strong revenues from this auction provide a solid boost to the Gemfields cash position and underscore the fact that market demand for responsibly sourced rubies from Mozambique remains in fine fettle.”