Wesbank

Lucara forecasts P2 billion revenue 

SHARE   |   Monday, 14 August 2017   |   By Staff Writer
Lucara forecasts P2 billion revenue 

The second biggest diamond to be found in history is yet to find a buyer almost two years after it was unearthed at Karowe Mine which is owned by Canadian diamond company, Lucara Diamond Corp. Then a relatively unknown company, the Canadian junior miner became an instant global newsmaker after it recovered what was known as the find of the century, the 1, 109 carats stone which was named Lesedi La Rona. The diamond was expected to shatter all records in sale but is still lying in the company inventory and reports recently emerged that the company is considering cutting it and selling it in pieces as it struggles to find a buyer who can meet its selling price. However, in the recently published financial results for the listed miner, CEO William Lamb, does not specify or indicate when the stone will be sold and how. The diamond was initially to be sold through an auction in London but the move failed as bidders could not even meet the guide price, forcing the company to hold it in its inventory. Lamb says the company is forecasting revenue between $200 million and $220 million for the year ending December 31, 2017 which excludes the sale of Lesedi La Rona currently held in the inventory. The cash rich company says its budget remains unchanged at $10 million to advance resource evaluation work on the AK6 Kimberlite at Karowe mine and the completion of a pre-feasibility study and to advance its exploration programme. The company has already completed drilling of a 10, 000 metre programme on the Karowe mine to test the AK06 kimberlite south lobe that was completed in Q1 2017 with the aim of converting inferred resources below 400 metres depth to an indicated resource and to determine the economic viability of the Karowe mine resource extension. Lucara has engaged Aveng Moolman to conduct mining activities at Karowe, but the contactor is said to have experienced troubles with its equipment during the beginning of the second quarter which resulted in lower than planned ore mined. Subsequently mining activity is said to have focused mainly on waste material movement that is on schedule to ensure increased flexibility for mining south lobe ore in the future. While ore mined was lower than forecast Lucara says processed volumes were largely on forecast as ex-pit ore feed was replaced with south lobe stockpile material.