A discussion about the companies performance over the last 5 years
The year started with a fantastic increase in customer
demand for watches of brands from our group, both for those of
High Prestige, and for those of the lower price range, particularly
those of Swatch itself.
Swatch maintained its leadership
position in its own segment
during 2008 and experienced a
growth in sales in all its markets
around the world. This result
was due to a successful series of
product launches, such as the
new Swatch Chrono Plastic and the Swatch 007 Villain Collection,
with its provocative marketing concept, as well as investments in
renovation and new store openings, thus expanding and improving
its worldwide retail network.
In terms of markets, Europe, with its strong growth, maintains its
leadership, but Asia and America, with even stronger growth rates, are
catching up fast. Investments in renovations of stores and shop-inshops
initiated in 2007 continued into the first half of 2008, notably
with the opening of new points of sale and kiosks in France, Italy,
Switzerland, UK, Ireland and Portugal. Eastern European markets
also experienced constant growth, with the investments made in
Poland and Russia over the last three years proving their worth and
generating strong sales growth. The United States had a record
year, thanks to a strong retail organization and good product positioning.
In Asia, consistent efforts, concentrated on boutique sales,
allowed the continued expansion of the distribution network across
the region, with new store openings and renovations. A training
program for sales personnel and store performance monitoring was
reflected in an increase in productivity. China continues to be the
main driver of development in the region, followed by Japan and
Hong Kong. In the Middle East, the strong growth of sales continued.
The brand is particularly well established in Saudi Arabia,
Turkey and the United Arab...