Seconds out: Tiffany and Swatch in court battle

In 2007, their partnership was announced with the superlatives typical of the luxury goods industry. Tiffany, the world's most famous jeweller, and Swatch, the maker of Omega and other fine Swiss watches, had "married" to make a range of "timepieces" including "a horological jewel with a curvaceous silhouette and a shower of diamonds".

But now the pair are at daggers drawn. Swatch sued first, seeking damages of Sfr3.8bn (£2.7bn) and declaring the partnership at an end. Tiffany had been too slow to make decisions and did not even display the £2,500 watches at its store on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, it said.

Yesterday, Tiffany's countersued for Sfr542m amid claims that it was the injured party.

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