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De Beers Sales Rise to Nine-Month High

Demand increases due to post-holiday inventory replenishment.
Jan 29, 2020 4:41 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... De Beers’ January rough-diamond sales reached their highest level since last April as post-holiday stock replenishment boosted demand.

Proceeds of $545 million at the first sales cycle of 2020 were 9% higher than a year ago, the miner said in a statement Wednesday. Sales also rose 28% from the $426 million the company garnered in December.

“Demand for rough diamonds increased during the first sight of 2020 following the end-of-year selling season and subsequent inventory restocking,” De Beers CEO Bruce Cleaver explained.

The result followed a weak 2019 that saw De Beers’ rough-diamond revenue slump 25% to $4.04 billion, according to Rapaport calculations based on the miner’s sales announcements. The total encompasses the company’s sights, which take place 10 times a year in Botswana, as well as its auctions.

De Beers raised prices in some categories at last week’s sight, sources reported. Dealers are obtaining higher premiums than previously if they resell the goods on the secondary market, a sightholder explained. However, the surge in buying is concerning because manufacturing remains unprofitable, he warned.

Image: De Beers’ Venetia mine in South Africa. (Ben Perry/Armoury Films/De Beers)
Tags: Botswana, Bruce Cleaver, De Beers, mining, Rapaport News, rough, Rough Diamonds, sight, Sightholders, Sights
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