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Swatch Agrees to Buy Dubai Luxury Retailer Rivoli

Nov. 25 (Bloomberg) -- Swatch Group AG, which bought the Harry Winston watch and jewelry brand for about $1 billion in March, agreed to take over Dubai retailer Rivoli Investments LLC, gaining a network of 360 businesses across the Middle East.

Swatch, based in Biel, Switzerland, didn’t disclose the seller’s name or financial details of the transaction that will give it control of Rivoli, according to an e-mailed statement today. Previously, it held a 40 percent stake in the retailer, which offers Swatch timepieces for sale across its network.

The Swiss company said in July that it expects a strong second-half after profit rose 6.1 percent to 768 million Swiss francs in the first six months. The company is expanding in markets outside Asia such as the U.S. to avoid depending too much on that region, Chairwoman Nayla Hayek said on May 29.

Rivoli is an importer, distributor and retailer of luxury products from watches to leather accessories in the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar and Bahrain, according to its website.

Dubai International Capital, owned by ruler Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s Dubai Holding LLC, acquired a “significant stake” in the Rivoli Group in 2007, according to information on the company’s website.

To contact the reporters on this story: Shaji Mathew in Dubai at shajimathew@bloomberg.net; Dale Crofts in Dubai at dcrofts@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dale Crofts at dcrofts@bloomberg.net

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