MILAN — Cost-cutting at Bulgari boosted third-quarter profitability despite flat sales for the period while watch sales bounced back after double-digit declines in the past two quarters.
Net profit for the three months ended Sept. 30 rose 74 percent to $14.1 million from $8.1 million the year before. (Dollar figures have been converted from the euro at current exchange rates.)
Sales dropped slightly, by 0.7 percent, to $181.3 million from $182.3 million the year before. On a constant-currency basis they would have risen by 4 percent, Bulgari said.
Specifically, watch sales recuperated substantially in the quarter, up 11 percent, after falling 29 percent and 13 percent in the first and second quarters, respectively. Also helping growth were easy comparisons with the year-ago period, as watch sales in the third quarter of 2001 fell 17 percent.
As reported, Bulgari has a tough time competing with more established brands like Cartier and Patek Philippe in an already-depressed market for timepieces.
Chief executive Francesco Trapani said Bulgari was especially penalized in a weak market because other watch brands had more leverage with retailers. Although he declined to release current order figures, he expressed confidence that conditions are improving.
"The order book for watches is very strong," Trapani said. "Things are going in the right direction."
Elsewhere, jewelry sales fell by 7 percent and perfume sales decreased by 13 percent on strong comparisons with the year-ago period. Accessories also saw strong growth, rising 11 percent.
Worldwide, sales in Italy and the U.S. grew, 10 percent and 9 percent, respectively. Sales in the rest of Europe fell 17 percent, hurt by weakness in the German and French markets. Japan’s sales dipped 4 percent.
On another note, Trapani dismissed market speculation that Bulgari’s slumping stock price has made it a takeover target. He said potential investors have not contacted the Bulgari family, which controls the Rome-based jeweler.
"We have not received offers or even had mere contacts with interested buyers for some eight years," he said.
“What he has done at Vuitton is really exceptional,” said @gameofthrones’ actress Gwendoline Christie on @mrkimjones’ final show for @louisvuitton. “He has rebooted luxury in terms of making it commercial, viable and contemporary. And most importantly artistic. He has never compromised his artistic vision for the sake of commodity.” (📷: @zefashioninsider)
After seeing a demand for men’s wear from its customers, British contemporary women’s wear label @ariesarise has added a men’s wear component and will launch a unisex collection with @mrporterlive. The 20-piece collection includes jackets, denim, logo T-shirts and more with deconstructed ‘90s vibes. Set to launch on January 18, you can shop the pieces on Aries’ website and on mrporter.com. #wwdfashion
“And so spending so much time with a character who thinks like that, inevitability you try and analyze yourself and go back and think about your own demons and dark chapters that you had in your life,” says @thedanielbruhl of his role in TNT’s “The Alienist.” The show, set in the Gilded Age of New York, also stars Dakota Fanning and Luke Evans. Head to WWD.com to read about how 39-year-old Brühl prepared for the role and why he thinks the show is so relevant to today #wwdeye ( 📷: @Eriktanner)
Now that Celine Dion’s collection has topped $10 million in sales, the pop superstar, fashion icon and newly-minted industry player is eyeing growth in Asia. Read the full report by @tiffanyap, link in bio. #wwdnews #celinedion
“My personal philosophy to beauty is paying attention to oneself. I love to be outdoors, lots of fresh air, trying to take care of yourself as best you can. I always notice that comes through,” says Felicity Jones, the global face of @shiseido-owned @cledepeaubeauteus, which launches today. Head to WWD.com to read more about the actress’ love for beauty and how she prepared for her new role in “The Basis of Sex,” playing the young Ruth Bader Ginsburg. #wwdbeauty (📷: @dandoperalski)
Among the familiar faces at @off____white’s show was a surprise figure: Japanese artist @takashipom, pictured here on Wednesday morning. Other show-goers included @jerrylorenzo, who spoke about his upcoming project: a @nike collaboration for back to school, with designs inspired by his childhood on the West Coast. Sitting in the front row were Future, Don Crawley, @miguel and more. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: Stephane Feugere)
According to @laurentsai, former “Terrace House: Aloha State” cast member, she didn’t know she was auditioning for the Japanese version of “Real World.” “I was telling a couple of my friends and someone’s like, ‘That sounds a lot like Terrace House.’ I was like, ’No it can’t be.’” Turns out, it was. But Tsai isn’t just a reality star — she’s an illustrator who has worked with Starbucks Japan and most recently, she’s dipping her toes into the fashion world. Head to WWD.com to read about her time on the show, modeling and her art. #wwdeye (📷: @danieldorsa)
More changes are coming to New York Fashion Week: Beginning with the spring 2019 collection, @alexanderwangny will move his New York show to June from September, adopting a biannual schedule with collections shown in June and December. Additionally, the @cfda is planning for an official summer/winter fashion season taking place as soon as June and December 2018. Read more about the upcoming changes on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @slovekinpics)