Image: 341.9 carat diamond recovered at Karowe in April 2015. Source: Lucara Diamond Corp
April 21, 2015
By Paul Zimnisky
After the close of trading on April 20th, Toronto-listed Lucara Diamond Corp (TSX-LUC) announced that it had recovered a 341.9 carat white diamond at the company’s only operating mine, Karowe in Botswana.
According to the company, the type IIa diamond shows “exceptional colour and clarity.” Type IIa diamonds represent only about 2% of all gem-quality diamonds and tend to have very little impurities and possess a high level of thermal conductivity.
Two other 100+ carat stones have also been recovered and the three exceptional diamonds will probably be sold at a Gaborone tender in May or June. In 2014, Karowe’s exceptional diamonds sold for an average price per carat of $32,471.
Last year the company recovered notable 203, 239, and 141 carat exceptional diamonds which subsequently sold for $8.2 million, $7.2 million and $6.1 million respectively at tender.
In 2014, Lucara paid a maiden dividend totaling C$0.08 per share, which included of a C$0.04 regular dividend and a C$0.04 special dividend that was based on proceeds from exceptional diamonds recovered and tendered during the period. The equivalent current dividend yield is 4.1% with the stock up 6.5% to C$1.96 a share as of noon trading in Toronto today.
The Karowe mine is estimated to produce 400,000 carats worth $230M in 2015, making it the 17th largest the world in terms of value produced, according to estimates.
Within the last 6 months the author held a long position in Lucara Diamond Corp, but did not at time of writing.