Richemont delivers strong performance for the year ended 31 March 2022

20 MAY 2022

Ad hoc announcement pursuant to art. 53 LR

Group highlights


  • Significant step change in Group sales and operating profit, reaching € 19 181 million and € 3 390 million, respectively
  • Increased proposed dividend of CHF 2.25 per 1 ‘A’ share / 10 ‘B’ shares and additional special dividend of CHF 1.00 per ‘A’ share/10 ‘B’ shares
  • Strengthened sustainability focus with Science-Based Targets commitment and appointment of Chief Sustainability Officer


Financial highlights


Compared to the year ended 31 March 2021

  • Sales up by 46% at actual exchange rates and by 44% at constant exchange rates, with double-digit increases across all business areas, regions and channels; growth momentum led by retail and the Americas
  • Operating profit more than doubled to € 3 390 million, delivering improved operating margin of 17.7% driven by:
    • Jewellery Maisons with 49% sales growth at actual exchange rates (+47% at constant rates) and 34.3% operating margin;
    • Specialist Watchmakers growing by 53% at actual exchange rates (+50% at constant exchange rates) and achieving 17.3% operating margin;
    • Online Distributors growth of 27% at actual exchange rates (+26% at constant exchange rates), YNAP stand-alone EBITDA at breakeven before exceptional reward payment; ongoing discussions with Luxury New Retail (‘LNR’) partners;
    • Other business area with strong growth (+53% at actual exchange rates, +51% at constant exchange rates) and significantly reduced operating loss;
    • Suspension of commercial activities in Russia resulting in € 168 million negative operating result impact.
  • Profit for the year rose by 61% to € 2 079 million
  • 55% increase in net cash position to € 5 251 million, supported by strong cash flow from operating activities and strict working capital management


Compared to the year ended 31 March 2020

  • Sales up by 35% at actual exchange rates and 37% at constant exchange rates
  • Broad-based growth in terms of business areas led by retail and online retail channels
  • Significant 700 basis point improvement of operating contribution


Key financial data (audited)

%change 2021







€ 19 181m

€13 144m

€14 238m



Gross profit

€12 027m

€7 861m

€8 611m



Gross margin




+290 bps

+220 bps

Operating profit

€3 390m

€1 478m

€1 518m



Operating margin




+650 bps

+700 bps

Profit for the  year

€2 079m

€1 289m




Earnings per A share/10 B shares, diluted basis






Cash flow generated from operating activities

€4 638m

€3 218m

€2 370m 

+€1 420

+€2 268

Net cash position

€5 251m

€3 393

€2 395

+€1 858

+€2 856

Chairman’s commentary

Overview of results

The financial year ended 31 March 2022 saw Richemont report another strong set of results. Increased inflationary pressures and repeated temporary store closures due to health protection measures, were offset by relatively improved economies up until February 2022. The Group’s strong sales, profit and cash flows confirm the strong appeal of our Maisons and relevance of our long-term strategy.

Sales during the year under review reached an all-time high of € 19.2 billion, a 46% increase over last year (+35% on a two-year comparative period) with all Maisons, channels and regions achieving double-digit growth, led by retail and the Americas (+79%). Sales in Asia Pacific rose by 32%, with mainland China sales growing by 20% compared to the prior year. The strong European client base more than offset subdued inbound tourism, leading to a 51% sales increase, while in the Middle East and Africa sales grew at a similar pace, surpassing Japan as the Group's fourth largest market, where sales rose albeit by 28%.

Our Maisons and businesses’ continued focus on client-centric initiatives, resulted in direct-to-client sales further progressing to 76% of Group sales across our directly-operated stores and the online retail channel. We have an improved insight into client profiles, allowing us to better meet expectations, nurture closer relationships and optimise supply chain management. While wholesale sales recovered from last year, direct-to-client sales rose by double digits compared to both the prior year and on a two-year comparative basis. This was further enhanced by the return to in-person high-jewellery events and the long-awaited Watches and Wonders event which opened its physical doors in Geneva for the first time in three years.

Our Jewellery Maisons, Buccellati, Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels, delivered a step-change in performance with combined sales exceeding € 11 billion and the operating margin reaching 34.3% versus 31.0% in the prior year. Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels posted an outstanding performance, increasing their market leadership. Buccellati also developed successfully, further expanding its international footprint with nine new directly-operated stores.

Another noteworthy achievement relates to the Specialist Watchmakers’ strong sales rebound (+53%) to € 3.4 billion and operating margin recovery to 17.3%, with nearly all Maisons exceeding pre-pandemic sales levels. The Specialist Watchmakers reaped the benefits of direct-to-client sales exceeding 50%, achieved through continuous improvements in distribution, communication, notably on social media, and supply chain management. The increased appeal of high-quality watches to Millennials and Gen-Z is very positive for the future.

At the Group’s Online Distributors, sales rose by 27% and EBITDA reached breakeven before the exceptional reward payments to Group employees and negative contribution of Feng Mao, the Chinese joint-venture with Alibaba. The shift towards a hybrid business model (mix of inventory ownership and e-concessions/marketplace) at NET-A-PORTER and YOOX, as well as localisation efforts, progressed further. Watchfinder consolidated its position as a leader in pre-owned watches in its home market and outside the UK.

The Group’s ‘Other’ business area, mostly composed of the Fashion & Accessories Maisons, posted strong growth, with sales 53% higher than in the prior year, positively impacted by newly appointed creative directors at Alaïa, Chloé and Montblanc as well as by the contribution of Delvaux, the Belgian luxury leather goods Maison, acquired last June. Peter Millar continued to perform strongly, notably through its G/FORE brand, while Alaïa and Chloé enjoyed a good reception of their recent collections. Montblanc's leather collection was successfully launched this March, while lacklustre travel retail continued to weigh on the Maison’s performance. Overall, the business area’s operating loss was significantly reduced to € 47 million.

Discussion with our Luxury New Retail (‘LNR’) partners continues around closer future collaboration. There is considerable complexity, which means the process is inevitably protracted. We look forward to concluding matters in the near future.

At the Group level, operating profit more than doubled to € 3.4 billion and the operating margin strengthened to 17.7%. This significant growth in operating profit, combined with careful management of working capital, led to cash flow from operating activities increasing to € 4.6 billion. Profit for the year rose by 61% to € 2.1 billion and net cash by 55% to € 5.2 billion at the end of March 2022.



Given the strong performance of the year and robust net cash position of the Group, the Board proposes to pay an ordinary dividend of CHF 2.25 per ‘A’ share (and CHF 0.225 per ‘B’ share), an increase of 13% over the prior year, as well as an additional special dividend of CHF 1.00 per ‘A’ share/10 ‘B’ shares, subject to shareholders’ approval at the Annual General Meeting on 7 September 2022. This is a recognition of the excellent profits achieved over the year that we would like to share, not only with all Richemont colleagues through an exceptional reward payment, but also with Richemont’s loyal long-term shareholders.


Annual General Meeting and Board changes

The Annual General Meeting (‘AGM’) in September 2021 saw some significant board changes: we were delighted to welcome Patrick Thomas, former Chief Executive Officer of Hermès, who brings unparalleled luxury industry expertise, and Jasmine Whitbread, an experienced director and highly regarded Environmental, Social & Governance expert. Both directors bring very valuable contributions to our Board.

We also bid farewell to two long-serving and valued non-executive directors, Alan Quasha and Gary Saage, who stepped down from the Board; two other respected and experienced non-executive directors, Jan Rupert and Ruggero Magnoni, have also indicated that they will not seek re-election to the Board of Directors at the 2022 AGM having each served for 16 years. They made immeasurable contributions to the development of Richemont and will be sorely missed. I wish to thank each of them for their loyal, insightful and valuable support.

After the 2022 AGM and subject to shareholders’ approval, the Board will be reduced to 16 members as we continue to seek an optimal balance between diversity and experience relevant to the business with a Board size which does not over-burden our non-executive directors. Female Board members will represent 31% of the new Board.

PricewaterhouseCoopers (‘PWC’) has been the Group’s external auditor since 1993. Recognising shareholders’ expectations, it has been decided to initiate a tender process which may lead to the appointment of a new Group external auditor.



Our vision of sustainable luxury requires that we leave no stone unturned.

One important step is to remove polyvinyl chloride (‘PVC’) from our products and packaging. I am pleased to report that we are on track to achieve this objective by December 2022 and wish to salute the countries that have already banned PVC from their landfills, thus contributing to a healthier planet for humans, fauna and flora.

Another major aspect is to ensure that sustainability is firmly embedded in our governance. With this in mind, Board member Ms Whitbread was appointed in February 2022 to chair Richemont’s Governance and Sustainability Committee, drawing on her experience at Standard Chartered plc and previously at, inter alia, BT Group plc.

In parallel to the enhanced Board expertise and involvement, the Group has continued to raise investment behind sustainability, including appointing its first Chief Sustainability Officer in February 2022 to further advance Richemont’s sustainability vision. The Group will build upon its already strong position in this area, validated by independent authorities such as MSCI (AA rating), Carbon Disclosure Project (A rating) and the Science Based Targets Initiative (targets validated). We were also proud to be rated among the top 2% of companies rated worldwide by Sustainalytics and the World’s Best Employers by Forbes 2021, and to be named as a Financial Times-Statista Climate Leader 2022.

I encourage you to read our 2022 Sustainability Report, to be released shortly, which speaks to many more of our achievements and commitments.



As I conclude my comments, I would like to convey our deepest sympathy and compassion to all those affected by the tragic conflict taking place in Ukraine. Richemont and its Maisons have made significant donations to Médecins Sans Frontières to support its relief efforts.

We remain in close contact with our colleagues in Ukraine and Russia, where we have suspended our operations. Their safety and wellbeing are our highest priority.

Even if the worst of Covid is hopefully behind us, we face a global environment which is the most unsettled we have experienced for a number of years. We can, however, take comfort from the strength and enduring appeal of our Maisons as well as their relatively balanced geographic spread. Richemont’s € 5.3 billion net cash position at the end of March 2022 is a source of strength as we face volatile times ahead. I am confident that the Group is well positioned to benefit from any strength in consumer demand. We will work to maintain the necessary agility and flexibility to manage global uncertainties.

Finally, I would like to thank all our colleagues across the Group for their contribution to the excellent performance delivered with solidarity, empathy, creativity, agility and responsibility. We have seen all our businesses improve and made major strides in our sustainability agenda. We consider ourselves custodians of Richemont’s underlying businesses and the planet for future generations. As such, I would like to reiterate how important it is for us to build brand equity over time, and to do it in a responsible manner.


Johann Rupert

Compagnie Financière Richemont SA


Financial review

Any references to Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan within this financial review are to Hong Kong SAR, China; Macau SAR, China; and Taiwan, China respectively.

Given the magnitude of the impact of the Covid pandemic on the Group’s operations in the comparative year ended 31 March 2021, additional comments are provided on a two-year comparative basis to the year ended 31 March 2020 for a more comprehensive view of performance.



Compared to the prior year, sales grew by 46% at actual exchange rates and by 44% at constant exchange rates as growth rebounded in all major markets and distribution channels. The strong sales growth rates experienced throughout the first three quarters of the fiscal year continued into the fourth quarter with overall Group sales expanding by 33% at actual exchange rates (and by 27% at constant exchange rates), despite the impact of the conflict in Ukraine and tighter health restrictions in China, leading to temporary distribution network closures in March.

Compared to the year ended 31 March 2020, sales grew by 35% at actual exchange rates and by 37% at constant exchange rates.

In the year under review, double-digit sales growth was seen in all geographies compared to the prior year, led by the Americas at 79%, with Asia Pacific further building on its strong performance in the prior year. On a two-year comparative basis, sales in all regions exceeded pre-pandemic levels on a constant currency basis.

The Group’s directly-operated stores generated the strongest channel performance with sales up by 53% compared to the prior year and by 51% compared to the year ended March 2020. Online retail and wholesale sales grew by 28% and 46% compared to the prior year, respectively. Excluding Online Distributors, sales through the Maison’s own e-commerce platforms grew by 44%.

All business areas enjoyed double-digit sales increases compared to the prior year and the year ended March 2020. The Jewellery Maisons generated an outstanding 49% sales growth over the prior year and a 54% increase over the two-year period. Sales at the Specialist Watchmakers and the Other business areas each grew by 53%, with all Maisons growing by double digits compared to the prior year. Compared to two years ago, the above business areas grew by 20% and 15%, respectively, with almost all Maisons growing by double digits. Online Distributors posted a 27% sales increase over the prior year and a 15% increase compared to two years ago.

Further details on sales by region, distribution channel and business area are given under Review of Operations.


Gross profit

At € 12 027 million, gross profit increased by 53% compared to the prior year, with a corresponding gross margin increased to 62.7% of sales.

This 290 basis point improvement in gross margin mainly reflected higher manufacturing capacity utilisation, a favourable geographical sales mix, a further shift towards retail sales and targeted price increases. All these positive factors more than offset rising precious material prices, the impact on costs of a strong Swiss franc as well as valuation adjustments of € 70 million for inventories held in Russia, due to the current suspension of commercial activities in this market.


Operating profit

Operating profit more than doubled compared to the prior year, increasing by 129% to € 3 390 million, or 17.7% of sales, constituting a 650 basis point improvement.

Overall, operating expenses grew by 35% over the prior year, well below the 46% sales progression rate. This increase in operating expenses partly reflected higher sales as well as the non-recurrence of one-off rental concessions and government employment support received in the prior year. The increase also included additional reward payments to Group employees to recognise the strong contribution to the exceptional performance of the Group during the year.

The further expansion of the Group’s retail network contributed to an increase in selling and distribution expenses. As a percentage of sales, they improved to 21.8% in the current year from 24.7% a year ago.

Communication investment across the Group increased to € 1 865 million and included the impact of the resumption of in-person events such as Watches & Wonders Geneva which opened in March 2022. As a percentage of sales, communication expenses were in line with pre-pandemic levels at 9.7%. Expenses related to the fulfilment of online retail orders grew by 37% whilst increases in administrative expenses were limited to 18%.

The decision by the Group to suspend its commercial activities in Russia, which accounted for less than 2% of Group sales, and the resulting current uncertainty surrounding future operations in the country, led to a charge of € 98 million in operating expenses.


Profit for the year

Profit for the year amounted to € 2 079 million, an increase of 61% over the prior year. Net finance costs of € 844 million for the year included non-cash fair value losses of € 538 million arising from the Group’s investments in a Farfetch convertible note and an option to purchase additional Farfetch China shares, as well as the Group’s investments in externally managed bond funds. In addition, it included a € 194 million impact of foreign exchange losses on monetary items. Interest charges on the Group’s outstanding corporate bonds amounted to € 95 million while lease interest charges amounted to € 65 million for the year.

Earnings per share reached € 3.611 on a diluted basis, up 57% over the prior year. To comply with the South African practice of providing headline earnings per share (‘HEPS’) data, the relevant figure for the year ended 31 March 2022 was € 2 132 million (2021: € 1 316 million). Basic HEPS for the year were € 3.762 (2021: € 2.328 ), diluted HEPS for the year were € 3.712 (2021: € 2.322 ). Further details regarding earnings per share and HEPS, including an itemised reconciliation, can be found in note 30 of the Group’s consolidated financial statements.


Cash flow

Cash flow from operating activities amounted to € 4 638 million, a 44% increase on the prior year, reflecting the significant growth in operating profit coupled with a measured increase in net working capital, with increases in inventories and receivables largely offset by additional liabilities.

Net investments in tangible fixed assets amounted to € 736 million, as the Group supported its growth momentum with increased investments primarily in its internal boutique network as well as increased manufacturing investments at the Jewellery Maisons and additional technology investments at the Online Distributors.

Investments in associates included an increase of the Group’s investment into Kering Eyewear and the previously announced investment of $ 250 million into Farfetch China.

The 2021 dividend of CHF 2.00 per share (1 ‘1A’ share/10 ‘B’ shares) was paid to shareholders and to South African Depository Receipt holders, net of withholding tax, in September 2021. The total dividend cash outflow in the period amounted to € 1 041 million.

During the year under review, the Group repurchased 171 million shareholder warrants issued under the 2020 equity-based shareholder loyalty scheme, for a total cost of € 131 million. These warrants will be used to hedge the Group’s obligations arising from its executive share-based compensation schemes. Proceeds from the exercise of stock options by executives amounted to a net cash inflow of € 123 million.


Balance sheet

At 31 March 2022, inventories amounted to € 7 099 million, a € 780 million increase over the prior year (2021: € 6 319 million). Inventories represented 15.1 months of cost of sales (2021: 18.3 months).

The Group’s net cash position rose by 55% to € 5 251 million at 31 March 2022. This position is comprised of cash and cash equivalents, investments in externally managed bond and money market funds as well as external borrowings, including corporate bonds. At 31 March 2021, gross cash amounted to € 11 200 million.

Shareholders’ equity represented 50% of total equity and liabilities compared to 51% in the prior year.


Acquisition of Delvaux

On 30 June 2021, Richemont completed the acquisition of Delvaux, the Belgian luxury leather goods Maison and inventor of the modern handbag, for a total cash consideration of € 178 million, with results consolidated within the Other business area from 1 July 2021. During the nine-month period to 31 March 2022, Delvaux contributed € 102 million of sales to the Group. The acquisition resulted in the recognition of € 60 million of goodwill and € 111 million in additional intangible assets.


Proposed dividends

In view of the Group’s strong results and robust net cash position, the Board has proposed a dividend of CHF 2.25 per ‘A’ share/10 ‘B’ shares and an additional special dividend of CHF 1.00 per ‘A’ share/10 ‘B’ shares.

The dividends will be paid as follows:

Gross dividend per
1‘A’ share/
10 ‘B’ shares

Swiss withholding
tax @ 35%

Net payable per
1‘A’ share/
10 ‘B’ shares


CHF 2.2500

CHF 0.7875

CHF 1.4625

Special dividend

CHF 1.00

CHF 0.35

CHF 0.65

The dividends will be payable following the annual general meeting which is scheduled to take place in Geneva on Wednesday 7 September 2022.

The last day to trade Richemont ‘A’ shares and Richemont South African Depository Receipts cum-dividend will be Tuesday 20 September 2022. Both will trade ex-dividend from Wednesday 21 September 2022.

The dividends on the Compagnie Financière Richemont SA ‘A’ shares will be paid on Friday 23 September 2022 and is payable in Swiss francs.

The dividends in respect of Richemont South African Depository Receipts will be payable on Thursday 29 September 2022 and is payable in rand to residents of the South African Common Monetary Area (‘CMA’) but may, dependent upon residence status, be payable in Swiss francs to non-CMA residents. Further details regarding the dividends payable to South African Depository Receipt holders may be found in a separate announcement dated Friday 20 May 2022 on SENS, the Johannesburg Stock Exchange news service.

Review of operations
The following section is only available in the PDF which can be downloaded above.

The following section is only available in the PDF which can be downloaded above.