Audemars Piguet Posts 17% Gain

Swiss luxury watchmaker Audemars Piguet in 2001 posted a 17% increase in sales, to $109 million (187 million Swiss francs), says the company. Headquartered in Le Brassus, AP has enjoyed double-digit growth for several years. In the U.S. market, the company's sales rose 23% to $14 million. AP's chief executive officer Georges-Henri Meylan noted that despite the events of Sept. 11, U.S. sales were better than planned. 2002 looks to be "extremely promising," says the company report. Supporting that are some high-profile events, including co-sponsorship of the Alinghi, the Swiss yacht in the America's Cup 2002, and the limited-edition Royal Oak City of Sails chronograph (starting at $11,800), which celebrates the sponsorship. In addition, a joint project this spring with the popular U.S. band *NSYNC resulted in the sale of 200 limited-edition Royal Oak and Promesse watches ($5,900-$8,500)

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