During Q2 of 2019, Lucara's revenue totaled $42.5 million, realizing $417 per carat. This constitutes a drop of 35 percent compared to $64.5 million realized in the second quarter of 2018, when the price per carat sold stood at $856 per carat. Lucara stated the sales figures were consistent with its management's expectations and plans.
"A strong operating environment prevailed at the Karowe Mine in Q2 2019, having met or exceeded guidance with respect to all mining and processing activities," Lucara said in a statement.
Ore and waste mined stood at 0.8 million tons and 1.8 million tons respectively;
0.71 million tons of ore were processed; 109,312 carats were recovered, 8,172 carats recovered from re-processing historic recovery tailings from previous milling. A recovery grade of 14.2 carats per hundred tons processed was achieved.
Lucara mined 225 Specials during the second quarter, representing an 8.1 percent weight percentage of total recovered carats, in line with mine plan expectations. Ten diamonds were recovered greater than 100 carats in weight.
Eira Thomas, President & CEO commented: "The largest diamond to be unearthed in Botswana's 50+ year history and the second +1,000 carat diamond to be recovered at Karowe in just four years, Sewelo, the 1,758 carat near gem that was recovered undamaged in April, is a testament to Karowe's remarkable geological endowment and the strong operating environment that prevails at the mine.
During the second quarter, Lucara continued to deliver safe, reliable, record diamond production. Having focused on operational improvements to drive performance, carat recoveries have significantly increased, and costs have gone down.
Overall average prices achieved for our diamonds during the first half of the year have settled at $463 per carat and reflect a higher contribution of fine (smaller) diamonds, with continued strong recoveries of single diamonds larger than 10.8 carats that contribute to more than 70% of our revenues.
Lucara continues to achieve high margins for its diamonds and is actively pursuing organic growth opportunities, including Clara, its proprietary, cloud based, digital, rough diamond marketplace that continues to ramp up and has now completed a total of 7 sales since December 2018."