Canadian “flawless” diamond sets online record of $15.7m at auction

The stone was from a larger, 271-carat rough diamond discovered at the Victor mine in Ontario, Canada, in 2018. (Image courtesy of Sotheby’s.)

A rare, flawless 102-carat white diamond found at the now closed Victor mine in Canada, has sold for $15.7 million (HK$122m), a record price in an online auction.

The small egg-size diamond was cut from a larger 271-carat rough, found in 2018, and then cut and polished for more than a year.

The bidding on the stone began in an online auction in September, culminating with an in-person auction at Sotheby’s in Hong Kong on Monday evening.

The buyer, an unnamed Japanese man, bought the stone for his second daughter and has already renamed it after her — The Maiko Star. He had previously bought an 88.22-carat diamond for his other daughter, Manami, last year, the auction house said.

The Maiko Star
The buyer, an unnamed Japanese man, bought the stone for his second daughter and has already renamed it after her — The Maiko Star. (Image courtesy of Sotheby’s | Twitter.)

Sotheby’s added the stone was the second-largest oval diamond of its kind sold at auction. It also noted the piece had achieved top rankings in each of the “four Cs” — cut, colour, clarity and carat weight — by which a diamond is judged.

To date, only seven D-colour diamonds weighing more than 100 carats have ever been sold at an auction, and none of them have been round brilliant cuts. Diamond cutters usually prefer to maximize the yield from a rough stone by producing a pear or emerald-cut stone.

The 163-carat flawless emerald stone is largest of its kind ever to be put up for an auction. (Image: PRNewsfoto | de GRISOGONO.)

The Maiko Star is slightly smaller than the one which currently holds the title of the world’s most expensive D-Flawless diamond — An 163.41-carat emerald-cut part of a De Grisogono necklace that sold for $33.7 million in Geneva in 2017.

It is also the most expensive Canadian diamond ever sold, even though is smaller than several other diamonds found in the country to date. Those include a 552-carat yellow diamond, about the size of a chicken-egg, unearthed in the Diavik mine in the North West Territories, in 2018.

The 187.7-carat Diavik Foxfire diamond is one of the largest precious stones ever unearthed in Canada. (Image: Screenshot via YouTube. )

The Maiko Star is also smaller than a 187-carat diamond, known as Foxfire, found at the same mine in 2015.

The auction record for any diamond is held by the “Pink Star,” which sold for $71.2 million at Sotheby’s Hong Kong in April 2017.

The Pink Star holds the world’s auction record for any diamond (Photo: Sotheby’s.)

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