Our business prides itself on the professionalism and experience in which we conduct our business – with safety, reliability, fairness, and goodwill. We strive to deliver the best product at the best price.
We source quality rough diamonds from auctions in South Africa, Belgium and Dubai, in addition to direct purchases from our diamond industry network. We also maintain our own buying operations based in several African countries, purchasing stones from small local producers, witnessing the direct mining of stones as they are retrieved from the ground. This allows for rigorous vetting of ethical practices, consistent with our purchasing policies – only sourcing from legitimately certified sources who abide by the Kimberley Process.
Our private equity fund, Sinolux Capital, allows us to invest in diamond companies which provide funding solutions to the diamond trade. This provides the advantage of extending our industry network, and widens our access to excellent quality rough diamond product.
There are four ways of diamond mining in the world today. These are:
- Open pit mining – This type of mining is used for kimberlite deposits and are impressive feats of engineering. It is the most common technique of recovering diamonds and it is used when kimberlite occurs near to the surface or has thin layer of gravel or sand, known as overburden.
- Underground mining – used once the open pit mine is no longer economically viable and is a more complex way of extracting ore and recovering diamonds. Once open-pit excavation reaches a point where the cost of removing waste materials is outweighs the value of the diamonds recovered then underground mining is considered.
- Marine mining – used on the ocean bed, specialist vessels mine at depths of 90 to 140 metres in the Atlantic Ocean using a sea bed crawler that is attached to the ship through a flexible ‘umbilical cord’. The crawler is controlled on board the ship which acts as a floating processing plant.
- Alluvial mining – used for river beds and gravel deposits, where diamonds have been carried away from their original source, over millions of years. Processing plants are erected close to these river beds where the ancient gravels are followed in search of their hidden gems.
There are very few countries around the world that have open pit and underground mining on large kimberlite deposits. These kimberlite deposit clusters are mostly present in Southern Africa, Russia and Canada. Marine mining is only conducted on the West coast of South Africa and Namibia, the same two countries also have prominent alluvial diamond mining operations. Many alluvial operations in South Africa today are in and around the Kimberley region of the country. The town where the diamond rush started in 1867 and after which Kimberlite rock was named. This area of South Africa has been the most important area for diamond finds over the last century and continues to be the case today.
Major diamond mines in South Africa and Lesotho:
This Diamond Mine is South Africa’s newest mine (opened in 1992) and is the largest producer of diamonds with an output of over 3 million carats per year. It is situated in the north of the country, in the Limpopo province. The open-pit mine is owned and operated by of De Beers and is the only major diamond mine to be developed in the country during the past 25 years.
Finsch is an underground diamond mine, located 160km northwest of Kimberley. It was one of seven mines that were owned and operated by De Beers until its sale to Petra Diamonds in 2011. The mine was first commissioned in 1967 and it is the second largest producing mine in South Africa with a production of around 2 million carats per year.
Formally known as the Premier mine, cullinan is an underground diamond mine currently owned and operated by Petra Diamonds. It is situated 40 km east of Pretoria and was established in 1902. The mine is famous for the largest rough diamond ever found. The 3106.75 carat was discovered in January 1905, by Frederick Wells, surface manager of the Premier Diamond Mining Company.
The mine has also produced more than 750 stones larger than 100 carats as well as more than a quarter of the world’s diamonds greater than 400 carats. It is also the only significant source of blue diamonds in the world today. The De Beers Centenary, the Golden Jubilee Diamond and the Taylor-Burton Diamond have all been recovered from this mine.
As recently as June 2014, Petra Diamonds announced the discovery of a blue diamond weighing 122.52 carats This discovery came just 6 months after finding an exceptional 29.6 carat gem quality blue diamond. After more than 100 years of mining, the mine still holds some of the worlds most valuable rough diamonds.
Koffiefontein is a diamond mine situated about 80 km from Kimberley, South Africa. It is one of the many mines around Kimberley that made the town famous. It is one of the oldest mines in the region and was opened in 1870. The mine was closed several times in its history as it never became a large production site. The total production of the mine was 7.3 million carats and the largest gem quality diamond recovered from the mine weighed 139 carats. In 2007, De Beers sold the mine to Petra and is still in production today.
Letšeng is located in the Maluti Mountains of Lesotho and is renowned for the recovery of large, high quality, white diamonds. Since Gem Diamonds acquired the mine from De Beers in 2006, it has produced over 60 diamonds greater than 100 carats in size and has recovered 8 diamonds in excess of 300 carats each that features the iconic 603 carat Lesotho Promise, the 550 carat Letšeng Star and the 493 carat Letšeng Legacy.
Letšeng boasts the highest average $/carat for any mine production, fluctuating around $1800 – $2000 per carat, depending on the number of high value pieces recovered.