June 9, 2016
Out of the spotlight for more than two years, the 59.60-carat "Pink Star" has new owners and an eye on the all-time record price for a diamond sold at auction. Don't be surprised if the Pink Star — the largest internally flawless, fancy vivid pink diamond ever graded by the Gemological Institute of America — sets a new benchmark at $70 million or more.
Gem lovers may remember when the oval mixed cut Pink Star stunned the auction world in November 2013. At Sotheby's Geneva, it fetched a world record $83 million, crushing the pre-show estimate of $60 million. The excitement turned sour in February 2014 when the auction house announced that the buyer, who was representing a group of investors, had defaulted on the sale. Because Sotheby's had guaranteed a minimum of $60 million to the seller, the auction house was obligated to pay that amount and add the pink diamond to its own inventory.
Sotheby's just announced that two firms — Diacore and Mellen Inc. — have purchased an ownership interest in the remarkable Pink Star. The third partner is Sotheby's.
Jewelry industry publication JCK noted that Diacore (formerly Steinmetz Diamond Group) has a natural interest in the stone because the company had purchased the original 132.5-carat rough and invested two years in fashioning it into the Pink Star.
“From the moment it was unearthed as a rough diamond, we have always believed in the singular importance and value of the Pink Star,” Nir Livnat, chairman of Diacore, said in the statement.
The news about the Pink Star comes amidst a whirlwind of excitement in the world of colored diamonds as amazing stones continue to smash world records. Just last month, the 14.62-carat Oppenheimer Blue fetched all-time record price for a diamond at auction when the hammer went down at Christie's Geneva for $57.5 million. Only six months earlier, the 12.03-carat Blue Moon of Josephine had captured the title when it fetched $48.5 million at Sotheby's Geneva.
The Oppenheimer Blue's record could be easy pickings for the Pink Star. The auction house has estimated its value at $72 million, but it could potentially sell for much more. Sotheby's did not indicate when the Pink Star would return to the auction block.
Credit: Photo courtesy of Sotheby’s.