Rio Tinto Diamonds has become the latest producer to embrace the auction model, launching a new sales method for some of the production from Canada’s Diavik mine.
The new “proprietary sales mechanism” lets invited companies bid in real time. The majority of Rio Tinto’s diamond production will be continued to be sold through supply agreements with Select Diamantaires, the company said.
The first application of the platform occurred in April and reported a record participation and strong sales results, according to a release.
De Beers also sells 10 percent of its production through its Diavik e-auctions. When it was signed in the diamond business, BHP used to sell through electronic tenders.
The company has also appointed Paul Dean as chief financial officer for Rio Tinto Diamonds.
Dean has held a number of senior roles in publicly listed companies, most recently as group finance director of Ultra Electronics Holdings.
Rio Tinto has said it plans to sell its diamond holdings.