Swatch sees good times going on as it clocks up £1bn profit


Things are ticking along nicely for Swiss watchmaker Swatch, as the company today announced a profits rise of 26% and predicted more good news in 2013.

Swatch, the world’s biggest watchmaker, said it saw net income grow to Swfr1.6 billion (£1.1 billion) last year and today raised its dividend by 17%. It also beat its Swfr8 billion target, with sales up 14% year-on-year to Swfr8.1 billion.

The company said 2013 had started well, and it expected more good news ahead, adding: “There is a realistic prospect of long-term growth in the Swiss watch industry of 5%-10% per year.

“The group continues to have substantial potential for 2013, thanks also to the integration of Harry Winston to the brand portfolio.”

Swatch, which also makes Tissot watches, acquired US jeweller and watchmaker Harry Winston last month for $1 billion (£622 million) in a bid to expand into luxury jewellery.

The results will be a relief for investors, given the slowdown in the Chinese luxury sector. Swiss rival Richemont surprised investors  last month by saying sales growth  in the Asia-Pacific region had ground to a halt.