Chow Tai Fook acquired a 59.6 carat pink diamond for HK$553 million (US$71.16 million), setting the world record for the top auction price for any gem, Bloomberg reports.
The Hong Kong-based jeweler made the winning bid for the Pink Star, ending a five-minute auction that included three phone bidders, according to Sotheby’s.
The oval-shaped diamond dethroned the Oppenheimer Blue, which fetched US$58 million in May at Christie’s.
However, the record price for the Pink Star is actually US$12 million lower than the US$83 million offer Sotheby’s adjudicated it for in 2013.
That sale collapsed because the buyer, diamond-cutter Isaac Wolf, never paid, and the auction house had to reclaim the stone, the report said.
Chow Tai Fook (01929.HK) is the world’s largest jeweler with over 2,000 stores throughout Greater China.
The Pink Star is the largest internally flawless diamond of its kind. Its color is fancy pink, the highest grade, and the purity of its crystals ranks among the top 2 percent in the world, Bloomberg said.
Steinmetz Diamonds, owned by Israeli billionaire Beny Steinmetz, spent two years cutting and polishing the stone, which was mined by De Beers in Botswana.
Pink diamonds get their color from a process known as plastic deformation, whereby pressure changes create structural anomalies in the crystals.
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