Richemont Appoints Van Cleef & Arpels’ Nicolas Bos as New CEO

FinancialsMay 17, 2024

Richemont Appoints Van Cleef & Arpels’ Nicolas Bos as New CEO

The announcement coincided with its full-year results, with growth driven by its jewelry brands.

Buccellati jewelry
A spring campaign image by Richemont-owned Buccellati. Richemont’s jewelry brands posted strong sales in its recent financial results.
Geneva—Richemont posted its highest-ever group sales for this fiscal year, boosted by its jewelry brands and retail sales. 

The luxury giant also announced changes to its board of directors, naming a new CEO. 

Nicolas Bos, currently CEO of Van Cleef & Arpels, will take on the re-established role June 1. Jérôme Lambert will continue as chief operating officer, reporting to Bos and remaining on the board. 

“With his strong track record, Nicolas will bring a rare combination of creativity, deep industry expertise, and entrepreneurship to his new role,” said Richemont. 

As for its results, for the fourth quarter ended March 31, Richemont posted sales of €4.8 billion ($5.2 billion), a 2 percent year-over-year increase at actual exchange rates (down 1 percent at constant currency rates). 

For the full year, sales were up 3 percent at actual exchange (8 percent at constant currency rates) to €20.62 billion ($22.33 billion). 

The luxury giant posted sales growth across all regions and business areas, at constant currency rates, for the year. 

The Asia Pacific region led the charge by value for the year, up 4 percent (10 percent at constant currency rates), while Japan saw the highest boost by percentage, up 8 percent (20 percent at constant currency rates). 

The U.S. posted 1 percent growth (5 percent at constant currency rates) for the year, becoming Richemont’s largest individual market, it said, coming in just ahead of Europe. 

Retail was its strongest channel for the year, with sales up 5 percent (11 percent at constant currency rates), with growth seen in all business areas and regions. 

In the fourth quarter, retail sales were down 2 percent (up 2 percent at constant currency rates). 

Online sales were down 2 percent at constant currency rates for the year and flat in Q4. 

Wholesale sales and royalty income were up 4 percent at constant currency rates for the year, boosted by jewelry, and up 2 percent in Q4. 

Richemont’s jewelry brands, Buccellati, Cartier, and Van Cleef & Arpels, saw sales increase 6 percent year-over-year (12 percent at constant currency rates). 

For Q4, jewelry sales were down 1 percent (up 3 percent at constant currency rates). 

The full-year sales increase “was underpinned by growth across price points and regions and included a sharp double-digit progression at Buccellati,” Chairman Johann Rupert said in a statement. 

“To accompany the three maisons’ dynamic development, we have stepped up investments in manufacturing, distribution and communication.” 

 Related stories will be right here … 
The company recently acquired Italian jewelry brand Vhernier, and took a controlling stake of footwear brand Gianvito Rossi. 

“We very much look forward to realizing Gianvito Rossi’s and Vhernier’s full potential over time, benefitting from the group’s infrastructure and backing as well as from the thriving luxury footwear and branded jewelry markets,” he said. 

“We always strive to create goodwill rather than buy goodwill and, in this vein, I am pleased to report the four and-a-half-fold increase in sales at Buccellati since acquisition in 2019,” added Rupert. 

Richemont’s watch brands are: A. Lange & Söhne, Baume & Mercier, IWC Schaffhausen, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Panerai, Piaget, Roger Dubuis, and Vacheron Constantin. 

Full-year sales in the category were down 3 percent (up 2 percent at constant currency rates). 

Sales of these brands fell 4 percent in the fourth quarter (1 percent at constant currency rates). 

A. Lange & Söhne and Vacheron Constantin posted strong sales, said Rupert. 

Retail sales were strong, he noted, with retail and online retail sales accounting for 60 percent of sales in the category. 

Richemont did not provide guidance for the year ahead, but Rupert said the company’s financial discipline in an inflationary environment set the stage for future profitable growth. 

He thanked the Richemont team and cautioned them to “remain alert and responsive amidst the ongoing global uncertainty.” 

“I continue to have every confidence that the strong combination of our strategy, unique assets and healthy balance sheet will enable us to achieve our long-term ambitions,” he said. 

Lenore Fedowis the associate editor, news at National Jeweler, covering the retail beat and the business side of jewelry.

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