Solid sparkle

Baitshepi Sekgweng
BIG BOY: A recent Lucara find

Defiant Lucara on course despite big drop

Although they fell well short of the revenue earned over the same period in 2022, Lucara Diamond Corp have expressed satisfaction with their takings for the second quarter (April – June) of the year.

According to their recently released financials, the Canadian enterprise, who own Karowe Diamond Mine on the outskirts of Letlhakane, forked in US$41.3 million (just shy of P562 million) during Q2.

While this is hardly peanuts, it represents a substantial drop of US$11 million from last year’s Q2 effort.

The jaw-dropping difference is attributed to weaker diamond prices, which have persisted since the end of last year and are only just beginning to stabilize, as well global economic concerns caused by the conflict in Ukraine, ongoing since February 2022 and showing no signs of relenting.

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Adding to this, Lucara changed their product mix at the start of the year, focusing on their built-up stockpile, which is a lower grade of ore.

Thus the fall in revenue was expected, with the diamond giant’s remaining confident of hitting their production targets for the year, set between US$200 – 230 million (they sit at US$84.1 million at the halfway point having raised US$42.8 mill in Q1). This confidence is further boosted by signs that the Chinese market is opening up to pre-Covid-19 levels.

Digging deeper into the Q2 figures, Lucara processed 0.72 million tonnes of ore, leading to the recovery of 90, 497 carats of diamonds. A total of 162 special diamonds were recovered, with 13 weighing more than 100 carats, four of which exceeded the 200 carat mark.

Expressing satisfaction at Lucara’s efforts over the three-month period, the company’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Eira Thomas said “Karowe once more delivered another solid quarter results against plan in Q2. As mining returned in the South Lobe, the proportion of specials increased and has so far included recovery of 13 stones over 100 carats, which will be polished and sold in the latter half [of the year].”

Lucara’s revenue over the second quarter was generated through three platforms.

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Leading the way was the HB Agreement – the sale of rough diamonds above 10.8 carats – which raked in US$25.8 million.

Quarterly tenders brought in US$9.8 million while Lucara’s digital sales platform, Clara Solutions accounted for US$ 5.7 million, of which 52 percent was from Karowe.

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