In 2020, the Group net sales for the full year amounted to CHF 5,595 million, -28.7% compared with the previous year at constant exchange rates, or -32.1% at current rates.
The operating result was CHF 52 million (vs CHF 1,023 million in 2019) – or CHF 99 million, excluding the discontinued business unit Calvin Klein – with a net loss of CHF -53 million, versus net income of CHF 748 million in the previous year.
The operating cash flow was CHF 819 million with a net liquidity of CHF 1,700 million, 24.3% or CHF 332 million higher than the previous year.
In the second half of the year, the net sales were -14.3% compared with the previous year (at constant exchange rates), but 54.7% above the first half. December 2020 was strong despite renewed lockdowns in important markets such as Germany and Great Britain.
Mainland China experienced double-digit sales growth not only for the second half but also for the full year. USA was at previous-year level in December. The Tissot brand achieved the best monthly sales in its history in the USA in December, even without the T-Touch Connect Solar, which will only be launched in the USA in early 2021.
Further expansion of e-commerce business, which reported sales growth of 70%, could not compensate for sales losses in traditional retail. The proportion of e-commerce for brands in the middle and basic price segment reached between 20% and 30%. Production of watches, jewelry and components was gradually increased in the past months, but will only reach capacity again in the first half of 2021.
Research and development activities were continued at the same high level as previous years. This resulted in 205 new patent applications in the year under review (previous year: 231).
The Group Management anticipates a strong catch-up in consumption worldwide for watches and jewelry in 2021, as has already been observed in Mainland China after normalization of the health situation. Demand will strengthen further as soon as travel restrictions can be relaxed or lifted.