When it comes to fancy color diamonds, the name ‘Argyle’ has made a heavy impact within the trade. The goods produced from the Argyle Diamond mine are known worldwide to have some of the most potent colors and therefore retain exceptional value. Furthermore, this is no secret to Rio Tinto’s Argyle diamond mine. They have done an excellent job of marketing their products over the years and managed to maximize their brand’s exposure across the nation.
One of Argyle’s many accomplishments, geared towards brand-recognition, is their annual Argyle Pink Diamond Tender. Through this invitation only tender, the Argyle Diamond mine presents a rare opportunity to purchase some of the very best pink diamonds produced throughout the year to only a selected few.
The Lot’s of 2012
This year’s outstanding collection includes a total of 75 lots. There are 56 diamonds of the ‘Argyle Pink Diamond Tender,’ of which two are Red (Lot 3 and Lot 4), and an additional 19 Blue lots of the ‘Once in a Blue Moon’ collected over the past two years. From the millions of carats mined throughout the year, showcasing only 75 Lot's is actually quite a bit compared to the past years. However, the reason for the large number is the combination of the Argyle Pink Diamond Tender and Once in a Blue Moon Tender.
Throughout the years, only the finest stones have made it to Rio Tinto’s Argyle Diamond Tender. Some of the most famous highlights from this year's tender are;
- LOT 1: The Argyle Siren, a 1.32 carat Square Radiant, GIA certified Fancy Vivid Purplish Pink stone with a VS2 clarity, and graded 1PP/SI1 by Argyle
- LOT 2: The Argyle Satine, a 1.02 carat Cushion, GIA certified Fancy Intense Purplish Pink stone with a VS2 clarity, and graded 4PP/SI1 by Argyle
However, some of the other pieces in the tender are nothing shy of excellent. For example;
- LOT 39, a 1.11 Carat, GIA certified Fancy Intense Pink, Radiant with an SI2 clarity, graded 3PR/SI1 by Argyle
- LOT 52, a 1.18 carat, GIA certified Fancy Intense Pink Emerald with an SI2 clarity, graded by Argyle 5PR/SI2
Collector’s and diamond enthusiasts from all around are almost just as thrilled over blue diamonds as they are over pink ones. Hence, there is no surprise that the Argyle mine monopolized on this and launched the ‘Once in a Blue Moon’ collection. Adding it to the Pink Diamond Tender only increases the attention it already has within the industry. The most famous blue diamonds in this year’s tender are the;
- Argyle Allure, a 0.33 carat, GIA certified Fancy Dark Gray Violet, Heart with an SI2 clarity, graded BL3+/SI2 by Argyle
- Argyle Elektra, a 0.30 carat, GIA certified Fancy Deep Grayish Violet, Pear with an SI2 clarity, graded BL3+/SI2 by Argyle
- Argyle Heloise, 0.33 carat, GIA certified Violetish Blue, Oval with an VS2 clarity, graded BL3/SI1 by Argyle
Diamonds on Display
To allow us all a taste of the diamonds to be presented in this year’s Tender, the Argyle Diamond mine is showing them off over the next two months in Perth, London, and Hong Kong. Following the showcase, the actual tender will take place and bids will have closed on the 15th of October, 2012.
“We are delighted to offer a highly sought after collection of rare pink, red and blue diamonds, which are destined for investment portfolios or heirloom pieces of jewelry,” said Josephine Johnson, manager of Argyle Pink Diamonds.
“Excitement around this year’s Tender collection is understandable as Argyle pink diamonds are a diminishing natural treasure distinguished by their uniqueness, their limited availability, their exceptional craftsmanship, their rich provenance and their natural beauty,” said Jean-Marc Lieberherr, Rio Tinto Diamonds chief commercial officer.
In the Past Years
LEIBISH has high hopes going in to this year’s tender. In 2011, the company was delighted to receive word that out of only 55 stones that were sold they won six beautiful diamonds.
The six Argyle Tender Stones that LEIBISH won in the 2011 Argyle Diamond Tender
An equal accomplishment was that Shmulik Polnauer, the companies GIA GG chief buyer, managed to improve the color of two of the tender diamonds by taking the great risk of sending the diamond back to the polishing wheel. Three points were removed from the 1.71 carat Radiant, and the famous 1.68 carat 'Leibish Prosperity Pink' Diamondwas created. The color intensity was improved from Fancy Intense to Fancy Vivid, therefore significantly increasing the value of the stone.
Shmulik Polnauer, LEIBISH's GG GIA, Loupes the 1.68ct Fancy Vivid Purplish Pink Leibish Prosperity Pink Diamond
The honorable win of the 2011 Argyle Pink Tender was consecutively after winning six diamonds in the 2010 Tender and one in 2009.
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The Argyle Diamond Mine
With an estimated closure of 2017, the 27 year old diamond mine appears to still be producing stones at a relatively steady capacity. Rio Tinto reported a net profit of USD$6 billion in the first half of its 2012 financial year. However, while obviously considering the future profitability of the Argyle Diamond Mine business unit, Rio Tinto made the decision to downsize considerably and cut a number of positions therefore maximizing the potential gain.
As a well known producer of the some of the finest stones in the today’s market, the projected closure of 2017 strengthens potential returns on investment for Argyle Diamonds.
LEIBISH hope to be able to share good news of this year’s tender winnings in the coming months!
Contributor: Benij Margolese