• Vancouver-based company wants to conclude sale by mid-year
  • Stone named Lesedi La Rona, or Our Light in Tswana language

Lucara Diamond Corp. is planning a road show to find buyers for the world’s second-biggest diamond and hopes to conclude a sale by the middle of the year, Chief Executive Officer William Lamb said.

The 1,109-carat stone was named Lesedi La Rona, or Our Light, in the Tswana language that’s spoken in Botswana, Gerald Ndlovu, manager of the Karowe mine where the gem was found, told reporters in Cape Town Tuesday. Syndicates of buyers or ultra high-net-worth individuals are among those Lucara may meet, Lamb said at the briefing.

The discovery of the gem last year sent shockwaves through the $80 billion diamond industry. The type-IIa stone, just smaller than a tennis ball, is the biggest unearthed since the 3,106-carat Cullinan gem found in South Africa in 1905. That was cut into pieces, which are set in the Crown Jewels of Britain. Exceptionally large rough diamonds can sell for about $60,000 per carat, though Lamb hopes that its status will boost its value, he said in November. At the time, he said he wants more than the $60 million that analysts estimated it may be worth.

The original stone was even bigger. A 372-carat section of the diamond broke off during the recovery process, Lamb said.  

“We were very fortunate that that piece did come off of the stone because otherwise the other one wouldn’t have been recovered” due to processing constraints, Lamb said.

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