SWATCH Group Has Acquired Harry Winston for $750 Million
|Harry Winston OPUS 12|
The last independent true high-end luxury watch and high jewelery marque headquartered in the United States, Harry Winston, is, alas, no longer independent, nor are they America-based. In a $750 million cash deal, Swiss-based superbrand SWATCH Group has acquired Harry Winston’s watch and jewelry divisions as well as $250 million of the brand’s debt.
For SWATCH, this is somewhat a departure from the status quo. As the owners of Breguet, Blancpain, Glashütte Original, Jaquet Droz, Omega, Longines, Swatch and Tissot, among others, SWATCH Group has been primarily a watch brand conglomerate. That is, until now. Harry Winston gives SWATCH Group a foothold in the high-jewelry market. This means they can now take on rival Richemont, owner of Harry Winston competitor Cartier.
What does this mean for Harry Winston? In truth, we really don’t know. SWATCH Group has a history of opacity in it’s business plans. Hopefully, they will keep the annual superwatch project that is the Harry Winston OPUS. On the flip side, the deep pockets of SWATCH Group may give the New York-based Harry Winston the opportunity to develop ideas far beyond those they could have dreamed of just a year ago. Only time will tell. (See what I did there…time, watches…)