Insights on a € 20bn Luxury Jewellery and Watch business
Sectors & Markets
In the financial year of 2023, Compagnie Financière Richemont S.A.’s annual revenue and operating profit are € 19.953 million and € 5.031 million respectively. This is the year when the Group made a strategic agreement with Alabbar and FARFETCH to come up with an unbiased sector-wide platform and to enhance the awareness of the Luxury New Retail vision of the Group. Due to the retail which represented 68% of the sales, the turnover had an increase of 19% at an actual rate of exchange and 14% at a constant rate of exchange.
The revenue growth across the geographical regions was rising at a constant rate. Asia Pacific earned €7.937 million with a 1% increase in constant exchange rate. The Group had double-digit growth in Southeast Asia, South Korea, Singapore, Australia and Thailand. There was a rigid rebound in revenue from China, Macau, and Hong Kong after the Covid-19 restrictions were lifted. Secondly, the Americas garnered €4.467 million with a 14% increase at a constant exchange rate. There was moderate growth in the region during the second half partly led by the American purchasing abroad. Europe accounted for €4.371 million (contributing 22% of the total sales) and gave a 31% sales boost at an actual exchange rate. This elevation was driven by the rise in US and Middle East tourists. Japan faced a 56% climb at a constant rate with sales of €1.616 million due to the strong local demand, continuous returns from international tourism since mid-October 2022, and temporary COVID-19 restrictions in nearby countries. Finally, the Middle East & Africa region generated €1.562 million and developed by 13% from the previous year with the increasing domestic demand and tourist spending in Qatar and Dubai.
Among all the distribution channels, retail (which incorporates Directly operated stores) earned the highest revenue of €13.497 million with a 17% sales hike when compared to FY 2022. The retail revenue grew in all the regions, especially in Japan and Europe guided by the Jewellery brands and the Watchmakers. Then comes the Wholesale channel with €5.162 million of turnover and an 8% rise at a constant exchange rate. The sales were mostly driven by all the regions (except the Asia-Pacific region) and business sectors. Online retail turnover rose by 6% as the brands are constantly expanding their digital participation with the watchmakers at the highest increase rate. The sales were led by America, Japan, and the Middle East which gave a double-digit growth.
Let us dive into the revenue performance of each segment of the Group.
The jewellery brands - Cartier, Buccellati, and Van Cleef & Arpels - attained a combined growth of 21% in sales, generating €13.427 million with a double-digit elevation in watches and jewellery. The successful collections including Cartier’s Santos, Trinity and Panthère, Buccellati’s Macri and Opera Tulle, and Van Cleef & Arpels’ Fauna, Perlée, and Alhambra were well-received. The outstanding performance was led by all means including the price range, distribution channels, and regions. The strongest growth was recorded in the DOS network and online retail with an 83% contribution in total sales.
The operating result amounted to €4.684 million, up by 23% compared to 2022. Additionally, the operating margin has been enhanced by 60 basis points to 34,9%.
There was a notable increase in store developments such as the Cartier boutique reopening in Paris 13 Paix, Seoul, and New York Fifth Avenue, a new Cartier store in Sydney, Van Cleef & Arpels’ new store in Chengdu and San Francisco, the extension of Buccellati flagship boutique in Rome and new store of Buccellati in Shenzhen Bay Mix, Singapore Marina Bay Sands, and Nanjing Deji Plaza.
The Specialist Watchmakers, comprising Baume & Mercier, Jaeger-LeCoultre, A. Lange & Söhne, Piaget, IWC Schaffhausen, Roger Dubuis, Panerai Officine, and Vacheron Constantin, had their joint sales increased by 13% with the revenue of €3.875 million.
This strong growth is fueled by the double-digit growth of most of the brands led by the retail and online retail distribution channels, which together hold 56% of the watchmakers' revenue with a 500 basis point hike that underlines the significant progress in the segment’s direct-to-client strategy. This initiative was further assisted by store developments including flagship unveilings by Panerai in Zurich, Maison Vacheron Constantin 1755 in Shanghai, Jaeger-LeCoultre in Beverly Hills, Piaget in Canton Road, Hong Kong, IWC in Taikoo Hui, Shanghai, and A. Lange & Söhne in Zürich.
When considering the regions, the division outperformed in Europe, America, and Japan. The brands released some iconic collections that show remarkable results - IWC’s Pilot’s watches A. Lange & Söhne’s Lange 1, Polo by Piaget, Vacheron Constantin’s Overseas, Reverso by Jaeger-LeCoultre, Panerai’s Luminor, Riviera by Baume & Mercier and Roger Dubuis’ Excalibur. Furthermore, the labels exhibited their pieces in Watches and Wonders Geneva 2023.
The operating result was €738 million and the operating margin earned 19% with 170 basis points more.
The others include the Fashion & Accessories labels as well as the production of watch components, and real estate initiatives.
They earned sales of € 2.651 million with a 19% climb compared to the previous year. This solid result was led by Fashion & Accessories labels. The revenue of Watchfinder was hurt by the UK’s lower local demand and declined demand in the pre-owned watch sector. In addition to all the regions and channels’ contributions to the revenue increase, there was a notable upsurge in the Americas and the Middle East & Africa.
The solid performance of Alaïa, along with the new successful collections and press coverage, indicated the hike in the desirability of Fashion & Accessories Maisons. Montblanc was well-received due to its Meisterstück writing instruments collection’s extensive demand, the footfall in travel retail, and the leather goods collection of Extreme. Chloé developed its performance by introducing new products in all its categories. Delvaux and Peter Millar continued to generate good results with the help of Tempête and Brillant collections, and Crown Sport apparel lines, respectively. The G/FORE footwear also had a solid year.
In the case of the store investment, the Group opened new stores like Delvaux in Tokyo Omotesando and Dubai Mall, Alaïa in Shanghai and New York, and Peter Millar and G/FORE in Arizona’s Scottsdale. There were several renovation projects including the Montblanc store in Paris Champs Elysées and Delvaux store in Paris St Honoré.
The operating result accounted for €59 million, up by 228% growth, and the operating margin was 2.2% with +430 basis points.
Cover Image: Richemont Headquarters, courtesy Monochrome Watches