A Richemont trading update for the first five months of the current financial year shows a 12% rise in global sales at constant exchange rates.
The group’s jewellery maisons outpaced specialist watch brands, with jewellery sales increasing by 17% compared to 7% for watches.
Sales increased in all regions, led by Asia Pacific. The strong performance in Asia Pacific was supported by double digit increases in most markets, including China and Hong Kong, where Richemont has turned around a situation where it was buying back stock last year.
A large part of the exceptional inventory buy-backs took place in the comparative period last year, Richemont says.
Europe has been more sluggish with just 3% growth in the five months to August 31. The euro zone has been affected by the strength of its currency this year, particularly on tourist spending.
The UK has performed much better. Sales grew at a double digit rate, benefiting from favourable currency movements, according to Richemont.
The trading update was delivered at an AGM in Geneva where executive chairman Johann Rupert said that he was close to naming a new head of watchmaking, following the departure of George Kern earlier this year.
“We’ll make announcements in November,” Mr Rupert said.