A rare 14.93-carat pink diamond was sold to an anonymous buyer for over $32 million at a Christie’s auction in Hong Kong on Tuesday (November 28).
The “Pink Promise” was expected to sell for as much as $42 million, but the gem went for only $2.14 million per carat, falling just short of breaking the world record for the most expensive pink diamond per carat.
The oval stone, which is set in a platinum ring adorned with smaller diamonds, was sold after a three-minute contest. The gem is certified as a fancy vivid pink diamond, the most prized color grade of all pink diamonds.
“The color of the stone was at the very top end of the pink diamonds, for pink. The size was very important, almost 15 carat, so you have an important size, a top color, absolutely clean stone and beautifully cut,” said Rahul Kadakia, international head of jewelry at Christie’s.
“So all of those elements together factored into the perfect masterpiece helped us achieve this price,” he added. Kadakia has also previously described the diamond as “the Picasso of the pink diamond world.”
The stone was was purchased in 2013 by gemologist and jeweler Stephen Silver, who spent several years planning how to cut it from its original 16.21-carat size to its current 14.93-carat shape.
“The work we did on this particular diamond was the most challenging recut in which I have been involved, due to the technical difficulty and large financial risk,” Silver commented.
After the cutting was done, the stone was re-certified by the Gemological Institute of America from a fancy intense pink to the much rarer fancy vivid pink rating.
The Christie’s auction in Hong Kong came after a choppy auction season in Geneva, where Sotheby’s (NYSE:BID) failed to sell the rare “Raj Pink” 37.3-carat diamond. “Pieces must be exceptional to sell today at the same level as two years ago,” Eric Valdieu, a Geneva-based jewelry dealer formerly of Christie‘s, told Reuters after that auction.
Sotheby’s holds the record for the most expensive diamond ever auctioned, having sold the 59.6-carat “Pink Star” for $71 million to Hong Kong-based jewelry retailer Chow Tai Fook.
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Securities Disclosure: I, Priscila Barrera, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.