LUNCH AT TIFFANY’S: Tiffany & Co. rang in a time-honored tradition among the fashion media flock with its annual holiday luncheon on Monday.
Held in the Tiffany room in the jeweler’s Fifth Avenue store in Manhattan, the event, which began in 1987, gave chairman and chief executive officer Michael Kowalski a few moments to brief the crowd on the company’s latest developments.
This story first appeared in the November 26, 2013 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Kowalski noted that for the first half of the year, both earnings and sales were up 7 percent and 10 percent, respectively. He did not provide numbers or go into detail about the most recent quarter, as the jeweler reports third-quarter results today.
“Tomorrow we will announce our third-quarter results so please stay tuned and, of course, no comments on that today,” the ceo said in his opening remarks. “Please do not ask my colleagues. We want to keep them out of jail at least for the holiday season.”
That elicited chuckles from editors and Kowalski’s tablemate Martha Stewart alike, while they awaited a three-course meal that included basil gnocchi, roasted halibut and individual red velvet cakes with berries — all served on Tiffany flatware.
But the ceo did glimpse the year ahead, noting the opening of both its European flagship in Paris on the Champs-Élysées in April, and its first wholly owned store in Moscow’s Red Square this spring.
He also mentioned the jeweler’s upcoming Blue Book collection, as well as its ongoing sustainability efforts.
“One of the things that has made Tiffany such an enduring brand is the trust that customers place in us. That trust is built upon integrity and consumer confidence,” Kowalski said. An implicit part of our brand promise is our commitment to precious jewelry that we design and that we craft, that it is created ethically and responsibly. I think we also understood long ago that great brands have the power to be agents of change.”