Richemont creates jewellery JV

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GoldDragon REUTERS A sales representative poses behind a nine-tael 24K gold in the shape of a dragon forming the numerals "2012", symbolising the upcoming Year of the Dragon, at a Chow Tai Fook Jewellery store in Hong Kong December 6, 2011.

Swiss luxury goods group Richemont and the world's largest jewellery chain, Chinese Chow Tai Fook, have agreed to create a joint venture, Swiss daily Le Temps reported in its online edition late Saturday.

Citing a source inside Richemont, the newspaper said that the two luxury brands would each control 50 percent of the new company, which would distribute watches made by Richemont luxury watchmaking brand Baume & Mercier in mainland China.

It will be tasked with boosting the Geneva brand's sales in China, the world's second largest market for luxury goods, Le Temps reported.

Chow Tai Fook, which was founded more than 80 years ago and went public in late 2011, meanwhile views the deal as a way to accelerate its watch distribution business, according to the report.

The Chinese company already distributes a long line of Swiss brands, several of them owned by Richemont, including Cartier, Piaget and Jaeger-LeCoultre.

No financial details of the deal were revealed. - Sapa-AFP


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