South African billionaire and Chief Executive Compagnie Financiere Richemont SA Johann Rupert have reaffirmed the company’s status in its operations in China.

According to Rupert, although there are regional differences in China – a key market for the company’s luxury products, the company is “still doing very well.”

He said business has slowed down a little in some of China’s coastal cities, but this has been compensated by growth in other regions.

The luxury goods chief also said he has been surprised by the resilience of the European and U.S. markets, but hinted at caution.

“If you can tell me what happened between [German] Chancellor Merkel and [French] President Hollande we would have a lot more visibility,” Rupert said.

“We don’t think it is a time not to be cautious. With acquisitions there is nothing on the horizon, we prefer to build goodwill rather than buying it.”, he added.

The South African billionaire was speaking after Swiss luxury goods company Richemont beat expectations with a 42 per cent increase in net profit to EUR1.54 billion ($2 billion) for fiscal 2012.

Johann Rupert is one of Africa’s richest men, he is the chairman of the Swiss-based luxury-goods company Richemont and Remgro, a South Africa-based company with interests in tobacco, financial services, mining etc.

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