Buying at a mining pit (Maromakotra)
Middlemen sometimes travel directly to mining pits to buy rough stones directly from miners, which they will then resell to foreign buyers. This gives the middlemen an advantage of first pick and lower prices, as miners are said to be eager to unload their sapphires in return for needed cash and unlikely to know the true value of a stone. The buyer here bought a sapphire for 10,000 Ariary. He expected to re-sell it for 20 or 30,000 Ariary, but the following day reported that he had only sold it for 12,000 due to fissures that the foreign buyer detected upon closer examination. His profit was only 2,000 Ariary (approximately 1 USD).