Firestone Recovers 204,000 cts from Liqhobong in June Quarter

Firestone Diamonds plc has released its quarterly update on commissioning activities at its Liqhobong Diamond Mine (owned 75 per cent by Firestone and 25 per cent by the Government of Lesotho) for the quarter ended June 2017.

During this period, the company recovered 204,000 carats at a higher grade of 22 cpht bringing total carats recovered for the financial year to 365,000 at an average grade of 18.6 cpht.

A total of 54 special stones were recovered larger than 10.8 carats (Q3: 31 special stones) bringing the total for the financial year to 112 special stones, as well as the continued recovery of fancy yellow diamonds throughout.

Firestone also held two diamond sales in May and June 2017 in Antwerp. The diamond sales saw all 182,786 carats offered for sale sold, achieving an average price of US$77 per carat for total sale proceeds of US$14.1 million.

Diamond sales for the end of the financial year therefore amounted to 310,376 carats sold, generating total sale proceeds of US$27.8 million, achieving an average price of US$90 per carat.

‘The Indian demonetisation programme has also impacted the company’s sales results when compared to the company’s initial price book and historic sales of our run of mine goods. Firestone has estimated that the impact of the Indian demonetisation programme has reduced sale proceeds by approximately 8 per cent for the company’s sales to date,’ the company stated.

Commenting on the results, Stuart Brown, CEO, Firestone Diamonds plc says that “Firestone has finished its financial year with another extremely strong quarter. The commissioning and ramp up process at Liqhobong has been very successful, particularly in terms of mining and treatment and to have achieved commercial production within eight months of start-up is an exceptional record. I look forward to reporting on the next financial year where Firestone expects to realise its vision of becoming a mid-tier diamond producer,” he concluded.

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