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Richemont Group Sales +29% in 1H

Jewelry Maisons Sales +34%

Nov 13, 2011 5:34 AM   By Avi Krawitz
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RAPAPORT... Swiss luxury group Richemont reported that sales rose 29 percent year on year to $5.79 billion (EUR 4.21 billion) in its first half of the fiscal year that ended on September 30, 2011. Growth was  spurred by its jewelry maisons unit.  Company profit increased 10 percent to $975 million (EUR 709 million).  At constant exchange rates, sales rose 20 percent year on year in Europe, 48 percent in the Asia Pacific region, 23 percent in the Americas and by 8 percent in Japan.

''Our maisons were able to benefit from a favorable trading environment to enhance their positions in jewelry, watchmaking and accessories,'' said Johann Rupert, Richemont’s chief executive.

Sales at Richemont’s Jewelry maisons division, which includes Cartier and Van Cleef and Arpels, grew 34 percent to $2.98 billion (EUR 2.17 billion) with operating margin increasing 50 basis points to 34 percent.  Specialist watchmakers’ sales increased 30 percent to $1.61 billion (EUR 1.17 billion), but operating margin fell 220 basis points to 27 percent. The company also runs its Montblanc maisons unit, where sales rose 10 percent to $459 million (EUR 334 million), while other businesses, including fashion and accessories, Net-A-Porter and its watch component manufacturing, reported sales increased 25 percent to $748 million (EUR 544 million).

Overall, retail sales grew 37 percent to $2.86 billion (EUR 2.08 billion), while wholesale sales increased 23 percent to $2.93 billion (EUR 2.13 billion).

Rupert said he expects group profits for the full fiscal year to be significantly higher than last year despite the global economic challenges facing the luxury sector in the second half of the year.

''The strength of our balance sheet will enable us to continue to invest in our businesses for the long-term, despite the very worrying world economic environment,'' he said.

Tags: Avi Krawitz, Cartier, jewellery, Jewelry, Johann Rupert, Rapaport, Richemont, Van Cleef and Arpels, watches
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