A woman walks past a Tiffany & Co. store at a shopping mall in Beijing. The designer boutiques of Manhattan and Paris are feeling the chill of a Chinese economic slowdown that has hammered automakers and other industries. That is jolting brands such as Louis Vuitton and Burberry that increasingly rely on Chinese customers who spend $90 billion a year on jewelry, clothes and other high-end goods. The industry already is facing pressure to keep up as China's big spenders shift to buying more at the spreading networks of luxury outlets in their own countryLuxury Shopping Chill, Beijing, China - 29 Nov 2018

Tiffany & Co.’s annual shareholder meeting went virtual Monday for the first time, amid the ongoing global health scare. But the luxury jeweler didn’t mention any specific challenges surrounding the coronavirus, the $16.2 billion deal to become part of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton or the clashes filling the streets of America. 

Instead, the talk was surrounding the 10 board members up for reelection, the company’s choice of accounting firms and executive compensations — all approved. 

Executives on the call declined to talk about the former topics. (Although the deal with LVMH, revealed in November, is still expected to close sometime this year.) Instead, Alessandro Bogliolo, chief executive officer of Tiffany, called the 2019 fiscal year “a year of progress on all of our strategic initiatives.” 

“The primary focus in 2019 was on the local customers in our key markets,” Bogliolo said. “A great example of this is on the Chinese Mainland, where we experienced strong double-digit growth for the year.”

The American jeweler opened stores in Hong Kong and Shanghai during the 12-month period ending Jan. 31, while renovating stores in London, New York and Sydney. Bogliolo said the renovations — along with enhanced marketing efforts — helped increase the average unit retail price by about 10 percent for the year. 

Still, like many retailers, Tiffany was forced to close about half of its stores in China in late January and all of its stores in North America by mid-March to prevent the spread of the coronavirus

Bogliolo said the company “looks forward to welcoming you back to all of our global stores,” but did not provide a timeline for openings. 

Shares of Tiffany, which closed up 0.18 percent to $128.36 each on Monday, are up more than 42 percent year-over-year.