Breaking News: Kering Sells Girard-Perregaux And Ulysse Nardin To Their Management
The French luxury goods group has agreed to sell its 100 percent stake in Sowind Group SA – which owns Girard-Perregaux and Ulysse Nardin – to Sowind’s current board of directors, including Patrick Pruniaux.
Big and exciting news has emerged from Switzerland this morning! It was announced that French luxury goods group Kering has agreed to sell its 100 percent stake in Sowind Group SA – which owns Swiss watch brands Girard-Perregaux and Ulysse Nardin – to Sowind’s current management.
In its former guise as PPR (Pinault-Printemps-la Redoute), Kering took majority control of Sowind Group – to which watch brands Girard-Perregaux and Jean Richard already belonged – in 2011, before acquiring Ulysse Nardin three years later.
Now, Kering is selling its entire stake in Sowind to the company’s current board of directors. And according to the Neuchâtel companies register, the board includes Kering Group Managing Director Jean-François Palus and Patrick Pruniaux, the CEO of Girard-Perregaux and Ulysse Nardin.
“The extensive work carried out by [Kering] Group in recent years at Girard-Perregaux and Ulysse Nardin has laid the foundations for sustainable growth,” said Palus.
He continued: “Kering has demonstrated its ability to secure the conditions for the long-term development of entities leaving the Group, in the interest of their employees, partners, customers, and local communities.”
Pruniaux, meanwhile, expressed his excitement at what is in effect Girard-Perregaux and Ulysse Nardin’s independence, and the growth that it promises to bring.
Pruniaux said: “On the sound foundations laid thanks to Kering's support and investments, we have the right set-up and resources to implement a plan capable of ensuring the long-term development of both [Girard-Perregaux and Ulysse Nardin].”
The transaction is expected to be completed by the end of the first half of 2022, while the financial impacts related to the sale will be reported in the accounts that were closed at the end of 2021.
The sale of these two high-end Swiss watchmakers seemingly leaves Kering Group to now focus on its interests in fashion, leather goods, jewelry, and eyewear.
(Photography by Pierre Vogel)