"The market led us to fine watchmaking"
Compagnie Financière Richemont, the world's second-largest luxury group, is 25 years old this year. The perfect opportunity to look back at its meteoric growth in an interview with Joint Chief Executive Officer Richard Lepeu.
Over the past five years, the Richemont Group, established a quarter-century ago, has virtually doubled its sales and profit to EUR 10.1bn and EUR 2bn respectively for the 2012-2013 financial year.
How do you explain such phenomenal success?
Richard Lepeu, Joint CEO, Compagnie Financière Richemont: Answering the question means returning to the Group's origins, namely Cartier. A watchmaker since 1853, it had a reputation as an inventor of forms which sourced its movements from third parties, in particular Jaeger-LeCoultre. This was a culture more taken with the shape of the package than what was inside. But in fine watchmaking as in fine jewellery, it comes down to expertise. An expertise we wanted to acquire as we quickly realised the potential for development in this domain. In other words, if we were to become a major figure in the measurement of time, we had to invest in what was inside, meaning have command of watch movements.
Read full interview in the HH Magazine:http://journal.hautehorlogerie.org/en/article/the-market-led-us-to-fine-watchmaking/