After a record-breaking sales year for the watchmaker in 2021, Hublot are raising their prices and citing inflation as the main cause.
When we took a look at Rolex raising their prices and the effect that would likely have on the market, we didn’t know that it would happen so soon. But here we are. Hublot are one of the first brands with plans to raise their prices for all of its timepieces.
Hublot CEO, Ricardo Guadalupe said in an interview that rising raw material costs, particularly for gold and diamonds, will lead to a price increase of 3 – 4% in April or May. Diamond suppliers alone have raised prices by 10 – 15%, according to Guadalupe.
“Almost all our suppliers are increasing prices,” said Guadalupe. While gold and diamonds are the main driving forces it is also as a result of the price of steel and titanium also rising.
This result is due to inflation that even the luxury industry has to deal with amid rising commodity prices and supply chain issues as a result of the pandemic.
That’s not the only effect of the pandemic. Big-spender consumers who didn’t spend money during lockdowns are now buying whatever luxury good they can get their hands on, like expensive Swiss timepieces, causing a huge upsurge in demand.
As Guadalupe confirmed, “The main problem is the production and the supply chain… We have to do it [raise prices] anyway, and since everybody is doing it, it is acceptable.”
Head of LVMH, the group that owns Hublot, Bernard Arnault, said that the group will be “reasonable” and “respect” its customers in regard to the price increases. But he also said, “It’s true that desirable products have a certain price.” This is in regard to the Nautilus model that Patek Philippe launched with Tiffany. It was priced at $52,635 USD and sold at auction for a massive $6.5 million.
Hublot have acknowledged that while 2021 was a record sales year it isn’t about how many people are buying their timepieces.
“We have more of a production problem today than a sales issue,” Guadalupe said. “The last three months have been unbelievable from the sell-out point of view.”
Hublot’s stock was reduced by 30 – 40% in 2021 at boutiques and retailers, according to Guadalupe.
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