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Reuters
Published
Mar 26, 2009
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Tissot expects stronger sales in 2009

By
Reuters
Published
Mar 26, 2009

ZURICH, March 26 (Reuters) - Swiss watchmaker Tissot, part of Swatch Group (UHR.VX), expects sales in 2009 to be stronger than last year as consumers carry on buying less expensive watches during the economic downturn.


Tissot T-Touch

"This year we will certainly do 5 or 10 percent more (sales) than last year," Francois Thiebaud told Reuters in an interview at this year's Baselworld watch and jewellery fair.

Demand in the UK was still strong in January and February, Thiebaud said, where sales were up 41 percent in local currencies and 11 percent in Swiss francs.

But sales were slightly negative in Italy, Spain and Austria, Thiebaud said, adding that demand in Japan, Taiwan and America was also weak.

Thiebaud expected appetite for timepieces to pick up quickly once the economic crisis was over.

"We are in an economic crisis, and there is a lack of confidence. People are not in the mood to buy," Thiebaud said. But he said the watch industry had seen other crises and would also be able to weather this storm. (Reporting by Katie Reid and Silke Koltrowitz, editing by Will Waterman)

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