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Richemont Weathers Hong Kong Storm

Nov 10, 2019 7:20 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... Jewelry sales at Richemont increased 8% in the first fiscal half, even as the company faced a challenging market in Hong Kong.

Jewelry proceeds at Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels rose to EUR 3.74 billion ($4.12 billion) in the six months ending September 30, while watch sales grew 1% to EUR 1.57 billion ($1.73 billion), Richemont reported Friday.

Cartier’s Love and Juste un Clou jewelry brands and its Panthère and Santos watch collections performed well, as did Van Cleef’s Alhambra and Perlée lines. Richemont saw global growth in the division, with Asia Pacific and Japan proving the strongest regions for jewelry overall, the company noted.

However, Richemont chairman Johann Rupert noted consumer demand was increasingly influenced by global geopolitical tensions, mainly in the Hong Kong market, which affected watch sales.

“Primarily due to a difficult environment in Hong Kong, the specialist watchmakers registered muted sales growth,” he explained.

Group sales rose 9% to EUR 7.4 billion ($8.15 billion) for the period, while operating profit plummeted 61% to EUR 869 million ($957.6 million). Richemont attributed the drop in profit to a one-off cash gain during the same period a year ago, as the shares it held in Yoox Net-A-Porter were reevaluated after the company’s buyout. Not including that gain, profit was “broadly” stable, the luxury retailer noted. Still, shares in Richemont fell 6% Friday following the announcement.

The figures do not include jeweler Buccelati, which Richemont acquired on September 26, it said.

Image: A Cartier store in Japan. (Flickr)
Tags: Buccelati, Cartier, Johann Rupert, Panthère, Rapaport News, Richemont, Van Cleef & Arpels, Yoox Net-A-Porter
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