Financials

US Sales Grow 44% for Watches of Switzerland in ‘Tremendous’ Year

FinancialsJul 07, 2022

US Sales Grow 44% for Watches of Switzerland in ‘Tremendous’ Year

Plus, CEO Brian Duffy on how supply shortages have spread to brands beyond Rolex and Patek Philippe.

2021_Watches of Switzerland Mall of America store.jpg
Pictured here is Watches of Switzerland’s new store in the Mall of America. The company’s full-year revenue was up 44 percent year-over-year.
London—Watches of Switzerland ended its latest fiscal year on a high note, posting record sales and profits.

The company has had a “tremendous year,” said CEO Brian Duffy.

“It is particularly pleasing to have delivered this performance against such strong prior-year comparatives, with the expertise and dedication of my colleagues proving invaluable,” he added.

Here are five important takeaways from the company’s recent earnings report, including Duffy’s take on the luxury watch supply problem.

Watches of Switzerland had a strong start to the year.

For the fiscal year ending May 1, the company posted £1.24 billion ($1.48 billion) in total revenue, up 37 percent year-over-year.

Sales in the luxury watches category rose 36 percent year-over-year on a constant currency basis.

Online sales climbed 5 percent year-over-year, but more than doubled compared to fiscal 2020, up 128 percent.

In the United States, Watches of Switzerland’s revenue totaled £428 million ($512.2 million), up 44 percent year-over-year.

Online sales in the U.S. are performing particularly well, said the company, with year-over-year growth driven by “expanded brand offerings, dedicated inventories, and marketing investment.”

 Related stories will be right here … 

The year ahead looks bright.

While companies like Pandora and Brilliant Earth have been hedging their bets, forecasting a slowdown in sales ahead, Watches of Switzerland has maintained a more bullish outlook.

The company said it’s heading into fiscal 2023 with “strong momentum” and believes the worst of the pandemic-related disruptions is behind it.

Watches of Switzerland predicted a recovery in foot traffic, including in its airport stores.

“Whilst we are cognizant of the wider macroeconomic environment, we believe the strength of the luxury watch category, with unique supply/demand dynamics, together with the success of our model will continue to support sustainable strong sales growth,” said the company.

Looking ahead, Watches of Switzerland maintained its full-year revenue guidance, expecting to reach £1.45 billion to £1.50 billion ($1.8 billion to $1.9 billion).

The jewelry category is still going strong.

Watches of Switzerland is best known for its luxury watch offerings, but its high-end jewelry category has been doing exceptionally well recently.

Revenue in the luxury jewelry category climbed 86 percent year-over-year on a constant currency basis.

The growth reflects a strong market, said the company, but the category also has benefited greatly from recent acquisitions.

Watches of Switzerland acquired a number of independent jewelers last year, including Betteridge, which has stores in Greenwich, Connecticut, and Vail and Aspen, Colorado.

It also scooped up the Ben Bridge store at Mall of America outside Minneapolis-St.Paul and Timeless Luxury Watches in Plano, Texas.

Watches of Switzerland also opened its first Bulgari boutique, which added to the increase in jewelry sales.

The company is continuing to grow its U.S. footprint.

Watches of Switzerland wasn’t content with just its recent acquisitions; it continues to open new stores here as well.

In the U.S, the company has 23 multi-brand stores, up from 17 last year, and 17 mono-brand stores, up from 13.

As of May 1, Watches of Switzerland had a total of 171 stores across the U.S. and U.K.

The retailer acquired a Rolex-anchored jewelry store in New Jersey last month, and recently opened a flagship store in Kenwood Towne Center in Cincinnati, Ohio.

The company also sunk money into its e-commerce performance in the U.S., investing in pre-owned watch e-tailer Analog:Shift, fitting it with a redesigned website, dedicated inventories, and a new office in New York.

“Our sustained capital investment has continued to support our growth plans. We have seen a strong performance from our recently opened and refurbished showrooms in the U.K. and U.S., and we have big plans for our European business,” said Duffy.

The company opened a Breitling boutique in Stockholm last month, with plans to open five mono-brand boutiques in Sweden, Denmark and Ireland this year.

A strong demand for luxury watches is fueling the company’s confidence.

Demand for high-end watches continues to exceed supply.

Watches of Switzerland has placed Rolex, Patek Philippe, and Audemars Piguet watches in its “super high demand” category.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Duffy said the supply issue has also spread to brands like Zenith, Omega, and IWC.

It’s difficult to keep Zenith chronographs, IWC pilot watches and Omega James Bond Seamaster and Speedmaster models in stock, he told Bloomberg.

“A lot of what we are selling we can’t get enough of in the first place,” Duffy said. “The whole industry is characterized by more demand than supply.”

This has been mostly a positive for the company, which reported average selling price growth across its brands.

Watch prices are already up an average of 4 to 5 percent, he said, but the company doesn’t expect to implement another “significant” price increase this year.

In a press release, Duffy said: "We enter FY23 with strong momentum with consumer demand continuing to outpace supply, and within this environment, we are benefitting from our strength both in showrooms and online.”

Watches of Switzerland expects to report its next results on Aug. 16.

Editor’s note: This story was corrected post-publication to reflect the fact that these results are for the full fiscal year, not the first quarter as previously reported. National Jeweler regrets the error. 

The Latest

Model Wearing Eat Cake Collection
CollectionsApr 16, 2024
Akaila Reid Launches ‘Eat Cake’ Collection

It’s ultra-feminine and filled with gold, pearls, and soft pastels.

Emily Highet Morgan, Emily Bennett
MajorsApr 16, 2024
Loudr Adds 2 Directors

Emily Highet Morgan and Emily Bennett have joined the agency’s team.

Stuller catalogs
MajorsApr 16, 2024
Stuller Releases First Lab-Grown Diamond Jewelry Catalog

Its updated book for mountings is also now available.

1-(3.18).JPG
Brought to you by
The Blueprint for Success in Scalable, Personalized Jewelry Retail

With Ho Brothers, you can unlock your brand's true potential and offer customers the personalized jewelry experiences they desire.

Headshot of Karen Rentmeesters
SourcingApr 16, 2024
Karen Rentmeesters Takes Over as Interim CEO of AWDC

She has been with the organization since 2010, most recently serving as its chief officer of PR and industry relations.

Weekly QuizApr 11, 2024
This Week’s Quiz
Test your jewelry news knowledge with this seven-question quiz.
Take the Quiz
Joyce’s Jewelry
TechnologyApr 15, 2024
Judge Rules Jeweler’s Lawsuit Against PNC Bank Can Move Forward

Joyce’s Jewelry sued the bank after cybercriminals drained its accounts of nearly $1.6 million through a series of wire transfers.

Alfred W. DeScenza
IndependentsApr 15, 2024
Alfred W. DeScenza of DeScenza Diamonds Dies at 95

He is remembered by loved ones for his loyalty, integrity, and kindness.

Jewelers of America Fly In Washington, D.C.
Brought to you by
How Jewelers of America Represents Your Business

For over 30 years, JA has advocated for the industry, fought against harmful legislation and backed measures that help jewelry businesses.

Madeleine K. Albright
AuctionsApr 15, 2024
Madeleine K. Albright Jewelry, Pins Coming to Auction

Hosted by Freeman’s | Hindman, the sale will take place May 7-8.

Audemars Piguet circa 1985 emerald car watch
AuctionsApr 15, 2024
All of Sotheby’s ‘Rough Diamonds’ Sold in Less Than an Hour

The auction house said all 24 timepieces offered in its underground sale of rare and avant-garde watches quickly found buyers.

AGS Conclave 2024 logo Austin
Events & AwardsApr 15, 2024
10 Can’t-Miss Sessions at AGS Conclave 2024

From lab-grown diamonds and AI to the inevitable Taylor Swift mention, here are some of Conclave’s most intriguing educational offerings.

My Next Question webinar
Recorded WebinarsApr 12, 2024
Watch: What Jewelers Need to Know About Insurance

From cybersecurity liability to trade show coverage, insurance experts share tips on how to build the right policy.

Evil Eye Charm with Turquoise Disc
CollectionsApr 12, 2024
Piece of the Week: Lionheart’s Evil Eye Gemstone Charm

The charm is a modern rendition of the evil eye amulet that has been worn for thousands of years.

The Jewelry Symposium scholarship winners 2024
Events & AwardsApr 12, 2024
The Jewelry Symposium Announces 4 Scholarship Winners

Ahead of its trade show next month, TJS awarded free registration and accommodations to one jewelry professional and three students.

SRK Empire and SRK House
Policies & IssuesApr 11, 2024
SRK Exports’ Journey Toward Net Zero Impact

By the end of this year, SRK’s diamond manufacturing complexes will achieve net zero emissions, one of an impressive array of achievements.

AGTA logo
Lab-GrownApr 11, 2024
AGTA Bans Lab-Grown Diamonds, Gemstones at GemFair

Members can still sell lab-grown stones, it said, but only natural gems are allowed on the show floor.

Steven Rosdal
IndependentsApr 11, 2024
Steven Rosdal, Co-Founder of Hyde Park Jewelers, Dies at 77

He is remembered for his charisma, passion, integrity, kindness, and wit.

Macy’s Herald Square store
MajorsApr 11, 2024
Macy’s Opens Books for Possible Buyout

The retailer also appointed two new board members, avoiding a proxy fight from a potential buyer.

Sylvie Jewelry model
CollectionsApr 10, 2024
Sylvie Launches New Nature-Inspired Collection, ‘Tulira’

The bridal collection consists of 35 engagement rings and seven wedding bands.

Rolex Oyster Perpetual Deepsea in 18-karat yellow gold
WatchesApr 10, 2024
These Are Rolex’s New Watches for 2024

The crown introduced a dozen timepieces in Geneva, including a heavy metal version of its deep-sea divers’ watch.

Levy’s Fine Jewelry diamond education
IndependentsApr 10, 2024
Levy's Fine Jewelry Explores Diamond History

The family-owned jeweler has a new education section on its website dedicated to the history of diamond cutting.

With Clarity NFL wedding bands
CollectionsApr 10, 2024
With Clarity Partners With NFL on Wedding Bands

The limited-edition men’s rings can be customized with one of 12 team logos.

Asian Star’s diamond manufacturing facility in India
SourcingApr 10, 2024
Compliance, Caution, and Concern: The Current Outlook of Indian Diamantaires

There is a willingness to comply with new government-mandated regulations, with an insistence that they should be practical and realistic.

Chrono24 watch inspection lab
WatchesApr 09, 2024
Chrono24 Debuts Pre-Owned Watch Authentication Program

The program, now live in Europe, will roll out to the U.S. this summer.

6.21-carat fancy vivid pink diamond
AuctionsApr 09, 2024
Phillips to Offer 6.21-Carat Vivid Pink Diamond

Colored gemstones and signed jewels are the focus of its upcoming Geneva sale.

Lucapa rough colorless and pink diamonds
SourcingApr 09, 2024
Former De Beers Exec Appointed to Lucapa Board

Stuart Brown, who was De Beers’ CFO and interim CEO, is now Lucapa’s independent non-executive chairman.

Jewelers for Children POS System Donations
MajorsApr 09, 2024
Jewel360 Announces New POS Integration, JFC Partnership

The point-of-sale software can now prompt customers to round up their credit card purchases as a donation to Jewelers for Children.

×

This site uses cookies to give you the best online experience. By continuing to use & browse this site, we assume you agree to our Privacy Policy