RICHEMONT SIHH - Final Press Release SIHH 2009

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SIHH - Final Press Release SIHH 2009

Friday January 23rd 2009, the 19th Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie ended on a note of satisfaction all-round for the 17 exhibiting brands. While visitor numbers were down, as expected, brands reported positive results with sales in line with expectations. Clearly, the current economic climate has not tarnished the appeal of Fine Watches worldwide.

The 2009 Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) confirmed it is a key event in the profession's calendar, as the major customers of the 17 exhibiting brands travelled to Geneva for this first-ever January edition of the Show. This year, as in previous years, the extraordinary expertise of these brands was on display, as much through the technical and aesthetic innovation captured in their timepieces as in the unique craftsmanship behind each one. As anticipated, visitor numbers were some 20% down, a consequence of a tough economic climate in the Japanese and American markets. Some 1,200 specialised journalists covered the Show, demonstrating international media interest in what is both a reflection of the newest trends and a hub for the prestige watch sector.

With attendance focused on brands' most important retailers, exhibitors were happy with the volume of business done. Initial feedback indicates that orders matched expectations, in particular in the exceptional watch segment. Indeed, customers were won over by the prestige timepieces on display, confirming the SIHH's unique role in the Fine Watch sector. All the indications are that 2009 will be a year of consolidation, after the unprecedented interest in technical and precious watches of recent years had taken the sector to a level which no one could reasonably expect to continue into 2009. As for the rescheduling of the SIHH in January, it was welcomed by visitors, to whom exhibitors were able to devote more time, and by the brands themselves which can better plan production and delivery of their new models.

As host city of the SIHH, Geneva leaves no doubt that it remains a bastion of Fine Watchmaking. Indeed, an additional thirty-some brands descended on the city during this exceptional week, taking advantage of the Show's unique force of attraction.

The SIHH is organised by the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie, under the aegis of the Exhibitor Committee which guarantees the Show's independence and ensures its core values of quality and excellence continue to prevail. As such, the dates of the SIHH 2010 will be confirmed after the next meeting of the Exhibitor Committee, which now presides over decisions regarding the SIHH and its development.

Full information and photos can be found at the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie website

Press Relations
Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie
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Tel: 00 41 22 307 09 96