Tzoffey’s conducts the largest auction in Israel’s history


World Diamond Congress 2006

The 32nd World Diamond Congress (WDC) was held from June 26 to 29 in Tel Aviv, Israel, attracting hundreds of visitors from around the world. One of the highlights of the congress was the largest-ever diamond, precious stones, and jewelry auction, which was organized by Avner Sofiov, the President and owner of Troffey’s auction house. The auction took around six months of planning and was held on June 28, 2006, attracting several hundred buyers and those bidding by telephone, such as those from Arab countries who could not attend in person.

A treat to the eye: a unique Cartier Bracelet with nine marquise diamonds and nine cushion-shaped, Kashmir sapphires

Auction Highlights 

The auction featured over 400 items with an estimated total value of $50 million. Bidders had the opportunity to preview the rare items on offer at the Basel World 2006 Watch and Jewelry show in early April, and at the Harry Oppenheimer Diamond Museum in Tel Aviv just prior to the WDC. The auction was a significant event and is now considered a part of the history and achievements of Israel’s diamond industry.

Troffey’s 1818 

Troffey’s 1818 is a privately-owned auction house specializing in diamonds, precious stones, and rare jewelry, holding auctions worldwide. Sofiov opened his first business in Paris in 1978 after attending many general auctions. He would purchase old jewelry with large diamonds, remove them, and re-polish them to upgrade their color or clarity. To date, Troffey’s 1818 has organized 18 successful auctions in Paris, Tel Aviv, Basel, Hong Kong, the United States, and Columbia.

This 15.76 carats Burmese ruby, which amazingly has no indications of heat-treatment, was one of many unique items auctioned.

Auction Success 

Sofiov and the WDC organizing committee were very satisfied with the outcome of the recent auction, particularly because it attracted many buyers from abroad. The most expensive item on offer was a rare platinum and diamond brooch set with natural fancy-colored and white diamonds weighing approximately 11.84 carats, valued at several million dollars. The brooch was signed by the renowned jeweler Alexander Reza.

Rare Items on Offer 

The other rare items on offer included a platinum bracelet set with nine marquise diamonds and nine matching cushion-shaped, fine quality Kashmir sapphires, signed by Cartier, and a pair of natural pearl and diamond drop ear pendants, one grey and one white, weighing approximately 44 carats, with marquise and brilliant-cut diamonds. The auction also featured many exquisite fancy-colored and white diamonds, emeralds, sapphires, and pearls.

Vision of the Future

Following the success of the World Diamond Congress (WDC) auction, Avner Sofiov, President and owner of Troffey’s auction house, has proposed a new initiative to Israel’s diamond bourse leaders. The aim is to create an annual International Diamond and Jewelry Week in Israel, a major event to attract overseas buyers, which would include a diamond show, seminars, and a diamond auction.

The response to the proposal has been positive and Sofiov hopes to bring all parties together to make the event a reality. As a seasoned auctioneer, Sofiov plans to organize the diamond auction. The ultimate goal is to boost the entire diamond industry in Israel and attract more buyers to the country on a regular basis.

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