Fossil invests in connected watches

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Fossil invests in connected watches

Postby koimaster » December 25th 2016, 2:31pm

Watchmaking The Texan group, which has eliminated about 40 jobs in Switzerland, says that sales of connected products are increasing.


Martin Frey, the director of the group's European subsidiary, confirms the health of connected watches.

Fossil is continuing its restructuring. The Texan group that sells watches manufactured in Switzerland has cut some 40 jobs at its four sites in Switzerland. It now focuses mainly on connected watches.




Currently, Fossil counts between 380 and 390 people, explains the director of the European subsidiary of the group Martin Frey in an interview published on Monday in Le Temps. The European headquarters in Basel employs 300 people, an unchanged number.
The job cuts announced in summer were held in Glovelier in the Jura (-6 jobs), Manno in Ticino (-8) and Antima in Bienne (-30).
Further restructuring is not to be expected in Switzerland, but it all depends on the group's licenses. The situation changes according to whether one brand abandons watches or another one works with Fossil, explains the boss for Europe.

In addition, since 2008, sales have posted a growth rate of 10 to 15% and the group has been less looking at its expenses. What he wants to correct.
After production, the American watchmaker wants to tackle its shops, which he wants to reduce the number "substantially". It currently has 450, compared to 600 in 2012. The changes will take place in 2017 and 2018, notes Frey.

Smartwatches in progress

In the last quarter, sales of the watch division decreased by 2%, well below the 8% decline experienced by the industry in general. Revenues in Asia grew by 12%. In addition, sales of connected products are progressing very well, according to Frey. "You'll see it in the fourth quarter," he said.
Acquisitions are not excluded. "We keep our eyes open," says the Baloise. But "today, Fossil invests only in smartwatches."
Last year, the group bought the manufacturer of connected bracelets Misfit for $ 260 million. This branch represents less than 10% of Fossil's products, but more in terms of turnover, according to Martin Frey.

Fossil produces 30 million watches per year, the majority in Asia. Only 400,000 bear the label "swiss made". Their price varies between 100 and 600 francs. These watches are sold under the Fossil name, but also under other brands whose group operates the license: Michael Kors, Burberry, Adidas, Armani or Diesel.

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