"Overall the diamonds from AK6 are deemed to be of very good quality and very attractive to diamond buyers."
On December 6, 2011 the Company announced a significant increase in the average value of diamonds recovered from the Karowe Mine in Botswana. In anticipation of production start-up from Karowe in 2012, the Company commissioned an updated valuation of the Karowe diamonds recovered to date, resulting in a 24% increase in overall modeled value to US $301 per carat at a 1.5 mm cut-off size. This is a significant jump from the 2010 valuation and represents the strong growth in demand for the type and quality of diamonds produced from Karowe.
"In summary, the AK6 kimberlites yielded diamonds with attractive color profiles and high yielding diamond forms. Mercury believes that there is significant upside potential to the actual valuations primarily because of the expected recovery of more large stones, and correction of major breakage problems. Also, the diamonds valued had not been subjected to a deep acid boiling process which typically leads to increased value of up to 5%".