Guiding Britain’s High-Promoting Watch Retailer
For Laurent Feniou, managing director of Cartier UK, the group’s give attention to digital exercise and e-commerce is properly matched with Cartier’s personal technique, in addition to being complementary by way of retail retailer places in Britain. “Cartier is London-centric however with Watches of Switzerland and Goldsmiths, we are able to have a broad attain throughout the nation,” he stated in a cellphone interview.
A key technique introduced in Watches of Switzerland’s five-year plan, revealed final 12 months, is additional acquisitions and investments in america in addition to venturing into Europe, with plans to open six single-brand boutiques in Sweden, Denmark and Eire subsequent 12 months. It additionally has ventured into pre-owned watches, a quickly increasing class within the trade, with the acquisition final 12 months of the U.S. on-line specialist Analog:Shift.
And it’s specializing in jewellery, which Mr. Duffy stated, “is strategically most likely the subsequent most enjoyable factor we’re taking a look at.” (The class’s income for the newest quarter, ending Jan. 30, was £41.8 million, a rise of 88.8 p.c in comparison with the identical interval in its final fiscal 12 months, however nonetheless solely 15 p.c of the £280 million luxurious watch income for a similar interval.)
Mr. Duffy introduced a substantial vary of economic, industrial and advertising expertise to Watches of Switzerland, with work as a chartered accountant at KPMG and a job at Polaroid adopted earlier than he joined Playtex UK. By 28, he was its chief monetary officer; by 30, he had moved to Paris along with his spouse and younger household to tackle the identical function for Playtex’s European operation; and by 33, that they had relocated to Connecticut, the place he turned its worldwide monetary officer.
He found an urge for food for danger when, in 1986 within the midst of the junk bond increase, he was a part of a administration buyout backed by the funding agency KKR. However then, in 1991, the corporate was bought to the Sara Lee Company. “I went from being a internet borrower to having internet funding and I by no means needed to borrow cash for a mortgage or something after that,” he stated.
In 1992, the household returned to Britain as Mr. Duffy turned chief govt of Playtex UK, and rapidly was concerned within the runaway success of Wonderbra, the lingerie model owned by Sara Lee that he negotiated again from its licensee. Its 1994 “Hi there Boys” marketing campaign, starring Eva Herzigova, was plastered on billboards all over the world and “turned an exceptional success,” he stated. Internationally, “a enterprise that was price $10 million turned a enterprise of $200 million within the house of a few years.”