TAG Heuer Says Record Sales Possible Amid Industry Slump

TAG Heuer International SA Connected Watches.

Photographer: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg

TAG Heuer could report record growth in revenue as it increases market share amid a slump in the Swiss watch industry.

The brand that considers itself the leader in “accessible luxury” has achieved double-digit growth so far in 2016, which may make it a “record year,” Chief Executive Officer Jean-Claude Biver said in a Bloomberg interview Sunday in Singapore.

TAG Heuer’s increase in sales coincides with a 15-month decline in exports of Swiss watches, according to data from the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry FH, released in October.

“We are totally contrarian to the market,” Biver said. “We are gaining market share and that’s what we are going for. We are more interested to gain market share than turnover.”

The brand, which opened an office in Silicon Valley this month to cement its smartwatch alliance with Google and Intel Corp., plans to add more employees next year after boosting its ranks by more than 100 in 2016, he said. In addition, TAG Heuer could also add as many as 10 stores in China next year, according to Biver.

The LVMH unit has been able to post strong growth amid a “crisis” because it is an innovative business, has affordable pricing and its products are perceived as being worth almost twice as much as their actual price, he said.

“We have worked very strongly, very heavily, very severely, very deeply on the perceived value of our products,” he said.

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