Retail & consumerRetail
Watches of Switzerland Group PLC

Watches of Switzerland's LFL sales tick higher but management is leery of macroeconomic uncertainty

"While there are some moving parts, overall our capital project programme is broadly in line with previous guidance."

Rolex watch
The luxury watch markets in the UK and US remain strong.

Luxury watches retailer Watches of Switzerland Group PLC (LON:WOSG) said it remains on course to meet full-year expectations despite macroeconomic uncertainty.

Revenue in the three months to 28 July rose 17.8%, or 16.5% on a constant currency (CC) basis, to £209.4mln from £177.7mln in the corresponding period of 2018. Like-for-like sales were up 10.8% year-on-year.

UK revenue rose 11.8% to £155.0mln from £138.6mln, with like-for-like sales from the retail estate up 11.5% on last year.

US revenue rose 39.0% (+32.4% on a CC basis) to £54.4mln from £39.1mln the year before, with like-for-like sales 8.7% higher year-on-year.

Revenue from luxury watches rose 22.8% to £177.4mln from £144.4mln the year before but sales of luxury jewellery fell 4.6% to £16.2mln f4rom £17.0mln, largely due to the closure of disposal of 12 retail outlets.

"Our first quarter as a listed business saw continued strong underlying growth in both the UK and US supported by the expansion of our showroom portfolio,” said Brian Duffy, the chief executive officer of Watches of Switzerland.

“Our focus on store upgrades and store customer service, supported by increasing digital and social marketing and closer collaboration with brand partners, is working.

“We have made good progress with our recently commenced Mayors investment programme, implementing new showroom formats and are very pleased to open the first-ever Audemars Piguet mono-brand boutique in our new Lenox store in Atlanta," he added.

The shares were down 1.9% at 278.5p in early deals.

Quick facts: Watches of Switzerland Group PLC

Price: £2.92

Market: LSE
Market Cap: £699.21 m

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