‘Oppenheimer Blue’ Diamond Sells for Over $51M, New Record

GENEVA (AP) -
A Christie's employee holds Oppenheimer Blue diamond of 14.62 carats, which is estimated to be sold between 38,000,000 to 45,000,000 US Dollars, during a preview at the auction house Christie's, in Geneva, Switzerland, Thursday, May 12, 2016. The auction will take place on May 18, 2016 in Geneva. (Martial Trezzini/Keystone via AP)
The Oppenheimer Blue diamond. (Martial Trezzini/Keystone via AP)

The “Oppenheimer Blue” has sold for a hammer price of 50.6 million Swiss francs ($51.3 million), setting a new record for a diamond sold at auction.

The 14.62-carat stone, billed as the largest Vivid Blue diamond ever put up for auction, obliterated Christie’s pre-sale estimate range of between 38 million and 45 million Swiss francs.

Wednesday’s sale rounded out a two-day run of big-ticket jewelry auctions in Geneva. The rectangular-cut diamond has been set in a ring and flanked by two smaller trapeze-shaped diamonds.

The previous record sale for any diamond was $48.5 million, of the 12.03-carat polished “Blue Moon” diamond in Geneva last year.

The diamond got its name from the late Sir Philip Oppenheimer, who long oversaw De Beers mining and had given the stone to his wife.