Rockwell Diamonds Inc. provided a third-quarter preview, stating that diamond recovery at its Saxendrift mine beat forecasts and that one stone exceeded 100 carats. Preliminary third-quarter-fiscal 2012 sales, however, would be about 46 percent lower than one year ago and included rough sales of $6 million from 5,377 carats. The average price per carat for the third-quarter of fiscal 2012 was $1,109, which was also lower than one year ago but in line with current expectations. Rockwell Diamonds should release official financial results in January.
The volume of carats sold in third-quarter rose 67 percent from the second quarter, according to Rockwell, and that improvement was partly due the company’s first production out of its Tirisano diamond project. Rough diamonds from Tirisano sold for an average price of $783 per carat, which was stronger than expected.
”We are well positioned in this improving diamond market. Our mines are starting to produce to target and our inventory is 1,800 carats at the end of the third quarter. This inventory was accumulated so as to satisfy higher demand during the peak sales period in the first quarter of the 2012 calendar year,” explained James Campbell, Rockwell’s chief executive.
“We continue to make progress with all the projects that have been set in motion in the last six months. I can confirm that we are now seeing evidence of a culture, which reflects our diamond value management strategy being inculcated in the day-to-day operations.
”In addition to progressing with projects which will enable our mines to produce according to their plans, we have also continued to bolster our technical teams to ensure that we fully benefit from these investments and become more effective at addressing operational issues on the mines. Also, following the agreement reached with the National Union of Mineworkers in November 2011, we have submitted our application to convert the Northern Cape mines to continuous operations,” Campbell added.