Rolex Signs Go Dark in Geneva as Energy Costs Climb


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(Bloomberg) — The green and yellow Rolex signs that are a hallmark of the watch brand’s presence in its hometown of Geneva will go dark this winter as soaring energy costs hit the Swiss watch industry.

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The country’s top watchmaker is turning off the nighttime lighting at its offices and Swiss manufacturing facilities and said Rolex signs overlooking the harbor of Lake Geneva will no longer glow at night.

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“Rolex expects an increase in its energy bill this winter,” company spokeswoman Virginie Chevailler said. 

Soaring energy costs are hitting Swiss industries from packaged foods to precision machine manufacturing as well as its vaunted watch making sector after Russia invaded Ukraine crimping supply and sending the price of oil and gas higher. 

Switzerland is increasing efforts to save energy, switching off outdoor lighting on public buildings and reducing the water temperature in indoor swimming pools. The country gets about 15% of its energy from gas, with almost half of that originating in Russia before the invasion of Ukraine. 

Swiss electricity is generated mainly from hydro power. The government has asked industry and household to reduce energy use during winter by about 15% and announced plans in September for a hydro-power reserve to strengthen energy supplies and help avoid bottlenecks.

Rolex declined to say how much it expects energy costs to rise or whether it plans to switch fuel sources at manufacturing facilities. 


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