De Beers Group has announced a provisional value of rough diamonds sales of $440m (£318.2m) for the third sales cycle of 2021.
The sales comprise both global sightholder sales and auctions, and represents a $440m (£318.2m) rise from 2020’s actual third cycle sales of £0.
However, the figures show a 20% cycle-on-cycle fall from the second cycle’s actual sales of $550m (£397.8m).
Due to a flexible approach, including the De Beers sight event being extended beyond its normal week-long duration, the total sales value has met the group’s expected sum for the period 22 March to 6 April.
Bruce Cleaver, CEO at De Beers, said: “Following a good holiday season and that trend continuing during the first quarter of 2021, we have again seen solid demand for rough diamonds as we begin a traditionally quieter period of the year for the diamond industry.
“Sales were in line with expectations and both market sentiment and overall industry conditions remain positive.”
However, he added that “with pandemic developments in Europe and Mumbai’s recent lockdown”, the firm will “continue to see challenges relating to Covid-19”.