The Watches of Switzerland Group, which is now a major trans-Atlantic player in the luxury watches and jewellery market, has announced turnover of £773 million for the financial year ending April 30, 2019.
The news means that the company has topped sales of $1 billion, a key aim of CEO Brian Duffy and the group’s private equity owner Apollo Global Management.
Revenue was up by 22.5% on the prior year, but the 2017-18 financial year did not include a full 12 months trading for the group’s American business because Florida-based group Mayor’s was acquired in August 2017 and additional stores were bought at Las Vegas’s Wynn resort later in the same financial year.
If American sales were included for the 2017-18 financial year, the adjusted growth rate in 2018-19 would be 10.2%.
In the UK, alone, revenue grew by 8.6% in FY 2019 compared to FY 2018 and the group achieved UK like-for-like revenue growth of 10% in FY 2019.
The company says an accelerating Q4 contributed to the record-breaking sales.
CEO of Watches of Switzerland Group, Brian Duffy, comments: “I am very pleased with our last quarter of FY 2019 and full year FY 2019 revenue performance which continues to demonstrate the success of our strategy and transformation program we embarked on five years ago.
“I am incredibly proud of the transformation Watches of Switzerland Group has undergone over the last five years to become the UK’s leading luxury watch retailer and successfully enter the important US market. Today’s announcement signals the next stage in that journey, leveraging our scale, retail and e-commerce expertise, and strong stakeholder relationships to continue our profitable growth strategy.
“There are significant growth opportunities ahead of us, both in the UK and the US, many of which are already being realised. We have a proven track record, an experienced management team and strong brand support for our plans. At Watches of Switzerland Group we have the best teams in the business and credit for our success goes to them. We love what we do and I am very excited for what lies ahead and the opportunity to take our growth strategy to the public markets.”
Talking to Professional Jeweller, director Craig Bolton revealed the jewellery side of the business has been growing at 3% on a like-for-like basis.
The financial results were released alongside the news that The Watches of Switzerland Group has applied for an initial public offering on the London Stock Exchange.