Fossil Group CES 2017 Las Vegas


Fossil Group Inc. made cuts to its staff this week and has closed some of its stores amid a restructuring at the watch and accessories firm.

“Like many companies operating in today’s difficult and often unpredictable marketplace, we are reinventing and repositioning our company to compete,” a spokeswoman said, confirming the layoffs. “As part of the New World Fossil initiative, we have taken a long look at our business and global footprint. In order to best compete, produce outstanding products and experiences that consumers crave, we have made the decision to become a leaner company. This enables us to be more agile, more responsive and better positions us to meet the evolving needs of customers as we continue to delight them with the quality products that are Fossil Group’s hallmark.”

Fossil Group designs, makes and sells watches and other accessories under a multibrand portfolio that includes its namesake line in addition to Michele, Misfit, Relic, Skagen and Zodiac. It also has the license for brands such as Armani Exchange, Marc Jacobs and DKNY, among others with a retail fleet of more than 600 doors.

The spokeswoman declined to say how many positions were cut but confirmed the reductions were across the global organization.

“As any company executing a multiyear restructuring initiative to drive growth and profit improvements, we are constantly evaluating our staffing levels to ensure we are appropriately aligned for the current business environment,” the spokeswoman said when asked if the company anticipated additional cuts.

Fossil Group also shuttered some of its underperforming doors late last year, the spokeswoman said, and it’s unclear as to whether more will be closed.

Fossil ceo Kosta Kartsotis in a November statement on the company’s earnings for the October quarter said the company would undergo an overall structural review, including a look at the company’s retail portfolio.

Kartsotis pressed on the importance of connected accessories to Fossil Group’s business strategy. He also said the company was in the midst of working on “a multiyear plan to reinvent Fossil Group” and “we envision a comprehensive plan that will evolve our model and the way we work, the way we develop product and the way we bring our products to market.”

The group last week took up a sizable amount of real estate on the show floor at the CES 2017 trade show in Las Vegas where its contingent of brands put their best wearable faces forward for the thousands in attendance.

The company announced at the kick off to the annual technology trade show that it planned to double its wearables offering this year to more than 300 items in a mix that will include the rollout of new designs, brands and slimmer hybrid smartwatch offerings. Some of those designs were unveiled at CES from the Fossil, Skagen and Misfit brands, along with Armani Exchange’s foray into wearables.

Fossil Group’s net sales fell about 4 percent to $738 million in the October quarter on a sales slump for its licensed watches along with the leather and jewelry categories. Sales in the Americas and European markets both slumped in the quarter, while Asia was the only one to notch a gain.

Company-wide net income for the October period came in at $17.4 million, compared with $57.5 million in the year-ago period.

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