The 2012 Argyle Pink Tender Launch
Every September Argyle diamond enthusiasts, collectors, dealers and investors eagerly await the announcement and invitation to the Argyle Pink Tender but only a select group of invitation-only bidders may be invited to try to win the world’s rarest and most extraordinary stones in the colored diamond arena.
Tender stones typically include 55-60 pink diamonds more than half a carat in size which hold a very deep and vibrant color above and beyond the already beautiful Argyle diamonds. Collected over the year leading up to the grand event, the diamonds are cut and polished by skilled artisans right at the Argyle Mine and then they are graded by 2 different independent grading laboratories. Each stone has a GIA and Argyle certificate and both serial numbers will be engraved onto the girdle of each stone.
The Tender is run much like a silent auction, whereby each diamond will have a reserve price and winning bidders are notified of their accomplishment in owning an Argyle Tender diamond. It goes without saying that these stones are the creme de la creme and therefore highly sought after. Winning bids can go for millions of dollars on a single stone. Can you believe that these tender stones will only fill a teaspoon? They are literally “one in a million”. Only 1 polished stone from every million of rough diamonds produced from the Argyle mine will be offered at the Tender.
It was just announced that the 2012 Argyle Tender will be held in Perth, Hong Kong and London in September and October. What’s so exciting is that this year, in addition to 2 red diamonds and 56 pink diamonds, there will be an additional lot of 19 blue diamonds. Argyle Blue diamonds are unusual in that they are do not contain boron and tend to be more blue violet in hue. Blue diamonds are a mere fraction of the Argyle Mine’s production and are therefore an extremely sought after color for diamond enthusiasts and investors.
Blue diamonds are not new to the Argyle Tender as they were introduced in 2009 with the launch of The “Once in a Blue Moon” collection sourced over several years, and comprised a range of precious blue and violet diamonds, which weighed in total 287 carats (57 g)
The 19 lots of rare blue diamonds, titled “Once in a Blue Moon,” which have been collected over the past two years, showcases the Argyle Allure, a 0.33-carat, heart-shaped diamond. Other stones from the collection which also take their reference from the feminine mystique are the similar sized oval and pear-shaped blue and violet diamonds, Argyle Elektra and Argyle Heloise.
Josephine Johnson, the manager of Argyle Pink Diamonds said of this year’s Tender, “We are delighted to offer a highly sought after collection of rare pink, red and blue diamonds which are destined for investment portfolios or heirloom pieces of jewelry“.
The collection showcases several “hero” stones that have been named in keeping with the theme of desirability and adoration of something beautiful and rare. Featured in the collection is Argyle Siren, a 1.32-carat, square radiant-cut, fancy vivid purplish pink diamond, and Argyle Satine, a 1.02-carat, cushion-cut, fancy intense purplish pink diamond.
“Excitement around this year’s Tender collection is understandable as Argyle pink diamonds are a diminishing natural treasure distinguished by their uniqueness, their limited availability, their exceptional craftsmanship, their rich provenance and their natural beauty,” said Jean-Marc Lieberherr, Rio Tinto Diamonds’ chief commercial officer.
The Tender results are never announced but being in the diamond industry, and having my ear to the ground I can tell you that the Argyle Tender diamonds get top dollar and not only do they hold their value but they increase like no other stones. Tender stones from 2006 alone have increased by 165%! Now that’s a return on investment.
Collectors and investors want that Argyle certificate knowing that they have something exceptional, unique, that in a way is certified beautiful just by virtue of being selected for the Tender. Now there is a certain amount of hype surrounding Argyle and the Tender which sort of increases this desire for the stones but given the unparalleled beauty these stones possess – I’d say the hype and anticipation for the Tender is warranted!
About Argyle Pink Diamonds
Pink diamonds, produced at Rio Tinto’s Argyle Mine in Western Australia, are highly coveted as the world’s most sought after gems. The Argyle Diamond Mine produces more than 90 per cent of the world’s pink diamonds, which are sold in a broad range of colours and sizes to an international customer base.
Pink diamonds’ value is directly related to their rarity. The market for pink diamonds is quite separate to white diamonds, and due to their rarity, pink diamonds typically command prices far in excess of white diamonds.
The best diamonds are reserved for the annual Argyle Pink Diamonds Tender. Rio Tinto’s Argyle Pink Diamonds business is located in Perth, Western Australia, alongside its cutting and polishing factory.