SouthernEra Diamonds Inc acquires rights to BK16 kimberlite pipe in Botswana

    Shares issued and outstanding: 166,232,179
    TSX: SDM
    AIM: SRE

    TORONTO and LONDON, March 28 /CNW/ - SouthernEra Diamonds Inc. (TSX: SDM,
AIM: SRE;) today announced that it has acquired a 55% interest in the BK16
kimberlite pipe located within the Orapa Kimberlite Field in Botswana. Under
the agreement, SouthernEra has the right to earn up to a 70% interest in the
project by funding exploration to the completion of a definitive feasibility
study. BK16 is located 40 kilometers to the east and 12 kilometers to the
north of De Beers' Orapa and Letlhakane diamond mines, respectively. Together
with De Beers' Jwaneng mine in Southern Botswana this region is the world's
largest diamond producer by value, accounting for 34 million carats annually.
    SouthernEra has entered into an agreement with Kenrod Engineering
Services (Proprietary) Limited, a Botswana registered company which owns the
BK16 prospecting license, and has immediately earned a 55% interest in the
BK16 pipe. The agreement is conditional upon approval by the Minister of Mines
of Botswana.
    Alasdair MacPhee, CEO of SouthernEra, stated: "We are delighted with the
acquisition of our interest in the diamondiferous BK16 kimberlite pipe. This
development affords us an accelerated entry into the largest diamond producing
country by value in the world. There has been a growing trend in Botswana
focusing on brown-fields exploration where more modern evaluation techniques
are being applied to previously discovered kimberlites. This has, in many
cases, improved diamond grades, and coupled with increasing diamond prices,
has resulted in projects now meeting the required hurdle rates. Botswana is
renowned for its investor-friendly environment, and is also served by
excellent infrastructure making it one of the lowest cost producers in the
    BK16, which was discovered in the early 1970's, is known to be
diamondiferous and was originally modeled to be 3.5 hectares in size. Recently
completed ground magnetometer and gravity surveys over BK16 suggest a larger
ore body and this is currently being remodeled. SouthernEra is planning an
evaluation program that will include core and large diameter drilling to
recover a representative bulk sample to establish grade and average diamond
    De Beers discovered Botswana's world class Orapa AK1 mine in 1967;
established the Letlhakane Mine in 1975; and the Damshaa Mine in 2002. From
the 1970's to the 1990's De Beers held title to the majority of permits
hosting kimberlites in the Orapa Kimberlite Field. Large areas of land have
since been relinquished, resulting in a significant number of kimberlites
becoming available, including pipes BK16, BK2, BK4, BK12, BK14, BK15, AK6 and
AK8. A number of these pipes have had limited evaluation completed since their
discovery in the 1970's. These pipes are now being re-evaluated by various
companies and many are producing positive results. For example, the AK6 pipe,
originally discovered in 1969, was initially thought to be 3.3ha in size at a
very low grade of 3 carats per hundred tonnes ("cpht"). In the early 1990's
Debswana Diamond Company undertook a program of 12' diameter percussion
drilling on AK6 yielding a grade of approximately 17 cpht. A larger scale bulk
sampling program carried out on AK6 in 2005 by the De Beers/African Diamonds
joint venture yielded a substantially higher grade of 24 cpht. The kimberlite
pipe is now believed to be 9.9 hectares in size containing 48.5 million tonnes
grading at 24 cpht, with a modeled diamond value of $150 per carat. (Source:
African Diamonds Annual Report 2006)

    SouthernEra Diamonds is one of Canada's fully integrated diamond
companies with extensive alluvial and kimberlite diamond exploration in the
DRC as well as other countries including Canada and South Africa. The Company
also holds the Klipspringer Diamond Mine in South Africa and maintains an 18
percent free-carried interest in the Camafuca Diamond Project in Angola.
    Mr. Uwe Naeher, Professional Geologist and SouthernEra's Western
Exploration Manager, is the qualified person, under NI 43-101, responsible for
the technical information in this release. Mr. Naeher has reviewed the
contents of this release.

    Some statements contained in this news release are forward-looking and,
therefore, involve uncertainties or risks that could cause actual results to
differ materially. Such forward-looking statements include comments regarding
exploration work. Actual results could differ materially from those
anticipated. The Company disclaims any obligation to update forward-looking

For further information:

For further information: SouthernEra Diamonds Inc.: Alasdair MacPhee,
Chief Executive Officer or Sharon Allan, Investor Relations, Telephone: (416)
359-9282, Fax: (416) 359-9141, E-mail:,; London: 4C-Burvale, Carina Corbett, Director, Telephone:
+44 (0) 20 7559 6710, Fax: +44 (0) 20 7559 6701, Email:

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