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Big diamond find at Cullinan

June 13, 2014

British mining company Petra Diamonds has announced the recovery of another unusually large blue diamond at its Cullinan mine in South Africa. The ‘exceptional’ find has significantly boosted Petra’s stock market value.

Südafrika Diamantenmine Cullinan Diamond Mine bei Johannisburg
Image: Stephane De Sakutin/AFP/Getty Images

The Cullinan mine in South Africa had recovered another “exceptional” blue diamond, which weighed 122.52 carat, mining company Petra Diamonds announced Friday.

The London-based miner, which owns Cullinan, said it was currently assessing the diamond's potential value, and would seek to evaluate its optimal route to market.

"The rarity of a blue diamond of this magnitude sets it apart as a truly significant find," the company added in a statement.

The new find at its Cullinan mine in South Africa has come just months after Petra sold a 29.6 carat blue diamond from the same mine for more than $25 million (18.4 million euros). Since then, the company's stock has soared 13 percent.

On Friday, it added another 7 percent, reaching a year high in early trading, making them the top percentage gainers on the FTSE-250 Midcap Index. The company said, however, the diamond would not be sold in the company's current financial year ending June 30.

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Petra acquired the famed mine in 2008. Other notable diamonds discovered at the mine are the 25.5 carat Cullinan blue diamond found in 2013 and sold for $16.9 million, and the Star of Josephine diamond found in 2008 and sold for $9.49 million.

"So far, the highest price on record paid for a rough diamond was $35.3 million, paid in February 2010 for a 507 carat white stone, also recovered from Cullinan. We think that this stone may break that record," finnCap analyst Martin Potts told the news agency Reuters.

The Cullinan mine also boasts the largest rough gem diamond ever recovered, the 1905 Cullinan Diamond, which was cut into two stones that are part of Britain's Crown Jewels held in the Tower of London.

uhe/sri (AFP, petradiamonds.com)

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