A 2.14 carat blue sapphire from Duttson Diamonds is displayed in a workshop in London, U.K. Photographer: SUZANNE PLUNKETT/Bloomberg
INTERNATIONAL - A Chinese company’s plan to ditch its construction-products business and focus on a famed 61,500-carat sapphire has sent its shares soaring.

Yulong Eco-Materials Ltd., a maker of bricks and concrete based in China’s Henan province, surged 570 percent on Wednesday after the company completed its $50 million purchase of the Millennium Sapphire and said it would take the gem on a world tour, as well as develop games and films.

The stock, which closed on Wednesday at $10.20 for a market value of $24.6 million, shot up again in pre-market trading Thursday for a surge of more than 900 percent since the news trickled out.

In addition to spinning off its Chinese operations, Yulong plans to relocate headquarters to New York, change its name and replace officers and directors to focus solely on the sapphire, which it called “one of the most documented gemstones in modern times.”

More than 36 million Yulong shares changed hands on Wednesday. That’s about 33 times the number of shares available to trade, according to Bloomberg data.

BLOOMBERG