Thursday, 24 September 2009

Shock Resignations Rock Richemont’s Watch Brands – 24/9/09

Times have been tough for luxury watch brands lately. And the tensions seem to have boiled over, with news that not one but two C.E.Os of Richemont’s watch brands have resigned this week.

We read in a Bloomberg article that Michel Nieto, C.E.O of Swiss watch brand Baume et Mercier, was first to resign citing “a strategy disagreement.”

Then only a day later, Fabian Krone, C.E.O of German watchmaker Lange & Söehne, “stepped down due to differences of opinion over strategy.”

And as Richemont raced to restructure their brands, new watch export predictions were released by the Swiss Watch Federation. The news was mixed: the pace of the watch market decline has eased, but appetite for timepieces remains weak in the key Hong Kong and U.S. markets. The positives were that China was up by 20 percent and Singapore was also up 9.6 percent," according to Vontobel analyst Rene Weber. To read more on the outlook for watch brands, click here.

For background information on the watch slump, refer to the MO Down on March 15.

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Who's behind the MO DOWN

Melinda O’Rourke is the founder and Director of MO Luxury, a dynamic, Sydney-based management firm specialising in luxury brands and services. Melinda and her associates at MO work with local and international brands across prestige retail, fashion, fine jewellery, timepieces and specialised services. Melinda is well-connected, well-read, and well-versed in the demands of the luxury market and its client base. Her advice is firmly based in objectivity and ultimately, accountability. Melinda offers constructive counsel and both strategic and creative thinking and is able to draw upon a strong network of specialised talent to compliment the MO Luxury team as needed. Melinda enjoys excellent industry relationships and is regularly quoted in the business and fashion media. Read more about MO Luxury,