The last independant house of Place Vendôme was recently acquired by Dominique FrÉmont, French by nationality but established in Geneva since several years.
It is a fact that the prestigious Mauboussin house, founded in 1827, was experiencing financial trouble.
Mr FrÉmont, stock holder of the company since 2000, will bring in 15 million euros and will see his participation rise from 20% to 70%. Patrick Mauboussin and his partner Daniel Dolffus will hold less than 20%.
During the eighties, Mauboussin's sales exploded thanks to the favours of fortunate clients from the Middle East and, especially, thanks to the Sultan of Brunei's special commands (watches, musical boxes) representing about three quarters of the turnover. But since the Sultan turned away the figures sank from 250 million French francs in 1998 to 92 million in 2000.
Mr FrÉmont's objectives are to balance figures in 2003 with a foreseen turnover of 25 million euros. However Mauboussin will not develop flagship stores.