The Swatch Group Ltd. in Biel/Bienne acquires 100% of the shares of the US company HW Holdings Inc., owner of Harry Winston Inc., 718 Fifth Avenue, New York 0019 (NY). The Swatch Group Ltd. acquires the brand and all the activities related to jewelry and watches, including the 535 employees worldwide and the production company in Geneva (Switzerland). The acquisition sum amounts to US$ 750 million plus the assumption of up to US$ 250 million of pro forma net debt. The transaction does not include the mining activities of Harry Winston Diamond Corporation (TSX: HW, NYSE: HWD) – new: Dominion Diamond Corporation –, in Toronto (Canada).
Robert A. Gannicott – Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Harry Winston Diamond Corporation commented: «The Harry Winston brand now has a new home that can provide the skills and support that it deserves to realize its true potential.»
And Nayla Hayek, Chairwoman of The Swatch Group Ltd., says «Harry Winston does brilliantly complement the prestige segment of the Group. We are proud and happy to welcome Harry Winston to the Swatch Group family – diamonds are still a girl’s best friend.»
The transaction is subject to the approval of the different regulatory authorities.
About Harry Winston Inc.
Founded in 1932, Harry Winston is the inventor of modern couture jewelry and is known as the «King of Diamonds» and «Jeweler to the Stars». The company has an unrivalled position as the most exclusive and prestigious jewelry retailer and is known for its expertise, fine craftsmanship, quality gems and innovative gemstone settings. Harry Winston is renowned for donating the world’s most famous gemstone, the Hope Diamond, to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C, where it has been one of the world’s most visited exhibitions. In the fall of 2010, the Hope Diamond was displayed in a special setting designed by Harry Winston to mark the 50th anniversary of its donation.
About The Swatch Group Ltd.
Swatch Group is the world’s number one maker of finished watches. Group companies sell watches under nineteen different brands and the multibrand Tourbillon retail mark. Present in all segments of the retail watch market, the Group is also active in the manufacture and sale of jewelry, watch movements and components. Swatch Group supplies nearly all components required to manufacture its finished watches and supplies movements and components to third-party watchmakers in Switzerland and around the world. Swatch Group is also the most important player in advanced nanomechanical and nanoelectronic technologies essential to watchmaking and other industries. The Group employs some 29 000 persons in over 50 countries. Gross sales in 2012 CHF 8.1 billion.
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