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January 14, 2013 – The Swatch Group Ltd. in Biel/Bienne acquires 100% of the shares of the US company HW Holdings Inc., owner of Harry Winston Inc. The Swatch Group Ltd. acquires the brand and all the activities related to jewelry and watches, including the 535 employees worldwide and the production company in Geneva (Switzerland). The acquisition sum amounts to US$ 750 million plus the assumption of up to US$ 250 million of pro forma net debt. The transaction does not include the mining activities of Harry Winston Diamond Corporation.
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Robert A. Gannicott – Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Harry Winston Diamond Corporation commented: “The Harry Winston brand now has a new home that can provide the skills and support that it deserves to realize its true potential.”.
And Nayla Hayek, Chairwoman of The Swatch Group Ltd., says “Harry Winston does brilliantly complement the prestige segment of the Group. We are proud and happy to welcome Harry Winston to the Swatch Group family – diamonds are still a girl’s best friend”.
 

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Very interesting indeed!
This is probably Nayla Hayek's idea, rather than Nicolas Jr's. It would seem, judging by the tone of the Reuters news article, that The Swatch Group wants to branch out into the world of luxury jewelry. Mr. Winston started out as a jeweler in his father's shop, and his jewelry creations became just as famous as those of Tiffany's. And this was decades before the company Harry Winston ever thought of getting involved with watches.
Trivia: Harry Winston was the owner of The Hope Diamond when it was donated to The Smithsonian History Museum in 1958
 

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Don't know what to think about this. HW makes some interesting pieces. Hope Swatch lets them stay true to their style.

ps - got to wear a $149,000 HW at their boutique in Honolulu at the Ala Moana mall.


(pardon the crappy iPhone pic)
 
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