A series of five sequential mini-auctions of emeralds held by gemstone miner Gemfields from May 9 to 26 saw all 38 lots on offer being sold and set a new record for the highest revenue and the highest average price per carat achieved, at $43.3-million and $155.90/ct, respectively.
Gemfields has held 41 auctions of Kagem-sourced emeralds since July 2009, generating $835.3-million in total revenues.
Besides the May auctions, Gemfields netted $37.8-million in revenue at auctions held during November 1 to December 6, where the average value amounted to $150.65/ct.
Product and sales MD Adrian Banks says Kagem’s second auction of this year has again been “hotly contested, reaffirming the remarkable levels of demand prevailing in the emerald and ruby markets”.
He adds that the auction marked the first time in history that a sizeable emerald auction was hosted in Bangkok, Thailand.
The May auctions contained a selection of grades that are typically offered at Kagem Mining auctions of higher-quality emeralds, as well as one special piece.
The auction lots were made available for in-person and private viewings by customers in Bangkok.
Following the viewings, the bidding took place via an online auction platform specifically adapted for Gemfields which permitted customers from multiple jurisdictions to participate in a sealed-bid process.
The rough emeralds sold were extracted by Kagem Mining - 75%-owned by Gemfields and 25% by the Industrial Development Corporation of Zambia.
The proceeds of this auction will be fully repatriated to Kagem in Zambia, with all royalties owed to the Zambian government being paid on the full sales prices achieved at the auction.
As a result of the auction, Kagem’s first half auction revenues now total $85.7-million, which compares with the $92.3-million obtained from all auctions in 2021, “highlighting the step-change being experienced in the market”, says Banks.