New York -- The 2006 Rio Tinto Diamonds Argyle Pink Tender came to a successful close on Oct. 4, when all 65 pink diamonds from the annual production of the companys Argyle mine were sold to an exclusive group of bidders. The diamond collection included a wide variety of polished stones in a broad range of pink hues and a small selection of violet diamonds, with sizes ranging from 0.49 carats to 2.03 carats. Twenty-six bidders, who were part of a select list of trade specialists invited to participate in the tender based on success in previous tenders, regular business with Rio Tinto Diamonds and strategic fit into its marketing strategy, acquired one or more of the exclusive stones, with no one company or market dominating the tender. Their bids were at an all-time high, exceeding those of each annual tender held since 1984. Details of the winning bids and total revenue generated from the tender are not disclosed to protect bidder’s confidentiality; however, pink diamonds are known to command prices exceeding $400,000 per carat, 20 times the price of equivalent white diamonds, due to their rarity and market demand. Rio Tintos Argyle diamond mine in Australia, which is wholly owned by Rio Tinto, is the world’s only consistent supplier of rare pink diamonds, according to the company. The mine produces an average of 30 million carats of small, colored diamonds per year.
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