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Richemont Reports 6% Sales Growth For First Semester 2023 – Contraction in Sales for Watches

Solid half-year results yet showing a market downturn, specifically for watchmaking brands.

| By Xavier Markl | 1 min read |

Switzerland-based luxury conglomerate Richemont Group has just issued its trading update for the six months ended 30 September 2023. The Group delivered a solid performance with sales up 6% at actual exchange rates and 12% at constant exchange rates. Sales and operating profit from continuing operations were of EUR 10.2 billion and EUR 2.7 billion, respectively. Yet, these results also reveal a downturn over the last quarter and slowing sales growth. Richemont had announced a 14% sales growth (19% at constant exchange rates) for the first quarter ended 30 June 2023… Headwinds have been visible throughout the luxury watch industry over the past months.

Richemont Group’s growth was mostly driven by its Jewellery Maisons (Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels and Buccellati), which achieved a 10% sales growth at actual exchange rates (+16% at constant exchange rates). The results are more contrasted for the Specialist Watchmakers, with sales contracting by 3% at actual exchange rates (+3% at constant exchange rates). The downturn is all the more significant over the past months that sales were up 10% for the first 3 months of the group’s financial year. A positive performance is highlighted for Vacheron Constantin and A. Lange & Söhne.

Richemont reports that an increase in sales was recorded across almost all channels and regions. If Asia Pacific drove the growth with sales up by 14%, the sales contracted by 4% for the Americas.

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Richemont points out that “The period under review started strongly, beyond our expectations. However, growth eased in the second quarter as inflationary pressure, slowing economic growth and geopolitical tensions began to affect customer sentiment, compounded by strong comparatives… The positive news is that a soft-landing scenario seems to be prevailing in major economies with still higher growth expected from China, which should benefit from stimulus measures.

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2 responses

  1. This timeline also matches up with when people started noticing they were increasing prices far beyond inflation. “Gouging” my grandpa calls it.

  2. Richemont doesn’t give a damn about watches! They will justify and rationalize and minimize the downturn in watch sales being a result of excessive price increases. They are destructive, but they don’t care in the least. They will continue to gouge. And they will continue to use “inflation” to blame it on when it’s really their strategy of greed. The solution is to stop giving them money.

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