Records set at Argyle Pink Diamonds Tender

October 14th, 2013 by Noam Flint

When colored diamonds go up for sale, people take notice. That is especially true when the items are pink or blue diamonds, which are among the most sought-after stones in the world. Luckily for diamond enthusiasts, one of the largest sales of these colored gems recently took place in Hong Kong. The 2013 Argyle Pink Diamonds Tender, which showcases stones mined at Rio Tinto’s operations in Australia, featured dozens of valuable colored diamonds and brought in millions of dollars from final sales.

The Argyle Pink Diamonds Tender was one of the most anticipated events of the year, and many fans of colored diamonds made it a point to look into the fantastic gems on display at this year’s sale. With so many options available to those who love these precious stones, the sale was one of the most successful in its history.

The Argyle Diamonds are known for their unique color saturation. Here are few samples:

Argyle Pink Diamonds CollectionArgyle Pink Diamonds Colors

Colored diamonds smash records

With 64 red, pink and blue diamonds up for auction at the Argyle Pink Diamonds Tender, the sale was poised to break records – and it shattered those expectations. At least two of the colored diamonds sold during the event recorded prices in excess of $2 million. Additionally, there were a record number of bids of more than $1 million. Those are some hefty price tags for the gems, which ranged in weight from 0.20 to 3.02 carats and all featured top-of-the-line quality.

While many of the final sticker prices were not released by the mining company, even the general information given about the sales provide a welcome look into the state of the colored diamond industry. The Argyle mine produces the largest supply of pink diamonds in the world – in fact, it’s the source of almost all of the pink-hued stones – so its annual sale is a can’t-miss event for any jewelry lover or collector. As the results of the 2013 Argyle Pink Diamonds Tender proved, interest in and demand for pink diamonds is strong.

“We are delighted with the results for the 2013 Tender collection, which are a reflection of their rarity, provenance and global reach,” Rio Diamonds managing director Jean-Marc Lieberherr told the news source. “The Argyle ore body is extraordinary, and after 30 years of production it continues to produce the world’s most coveted diamonds.”

Unique gems steal the show

One of the highlights of the sale was the Argyle Phoenix. This 1.56-carat fancy red diamond sold for more than $2 million. Although the exact price was not disclosed for confidentiality purposes, just selling for more than $2 million makes it the highest price-per-carat ever paid for a diamond produced by the Rio Tinto Argyle mine, according to AFP.

Another banner sale involved the Argyle Dauphine. As a 2.51-carat fancy deep pink diamond, it also sold for more than $2 million to a U.S. dealer. This radiant-cut gem was also one of the most-hyped stones of the auction, and with demand for colored diamonds on the rise, it was among the most sought-after pieces of the sale.

The Rio Tinto mine may be best known for its pink and red diamonds, but it also managed to find, cut and polish a blue diamond in time for this year’s event. Details about the sale of this gem are scarce, but it is safe to assume that it was one of the biggest and most expensive draws of the tender.

The interested parties

This annual sale attracted a large number of interested buyers from all over the world. A U.S. jewelry dealer may have landed the Argyle Dauphine, but the grand prize of the event, the red Argyle Phoenix, went to Singapore-based John Glajz. According to The Australian, Glajz has been purchasing Argyle diamonds for more than two decades, but he believes the price for the Phoenix is the most he has ever bid for a single item. His company also placed bids for about 80 percent of the other diamonds at the sale.

“These fabulous flukes of nature are a good news story in the mining industry at the moment,” Josephine Johnson, manager of Rio Tinto’s pink diamonds, told AFP. “There was a lot of interest from our established markets such as Australia, the United States, Japan and Europe, but also China and India, where there is now a very strong demand.”

Previews of the stones were held in Sydney, New York, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Perth in the weeks leading up to the tender. Only prospective clients and experts were able to get a glimpse of these precious gems, and they could also begin making offers for individual diamonds at that time.

Interest in pink diamonds continues to grow by the day, so by the time next year’s Argyle Pink Diamonds Tender rolls around, even more records may be in line to be set.