Gem Diamonds has sold the exceptional quality 910 carat D Colour type IIa diamond it recovered from the Letseng mine in Lesotho in January for $40m.
The diamond, named The Lesotho Legend, is the fifth largest gem quality diamond even recovered. It was sold on tender in Antwerp on 12 March.

Chief executive officer Clifford Elphick said: “We are delighted with the outcome of the sale of this iconic diamond, which demonstrates the exceptional quality of The Lesotho Legend itself, as well as reaffirming the unique quality of the Letseng diamond production.”

Shore Capital said it had been expecting the diamond to fetch “at least that much”.

So far this year, Gem has recovered six diamonds of more than 100 carats.

At 1050 GMT, the shares were up 1.1% to 93.18p.