Dutch court backs Swatch in $400 million row with Tiffany

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ZURICH (Reuters) - A Dutch appeals court ruled on Tuesday that Swatch Group UHR.S deserved compensation in a $400 million row with U.S. luxury goods maker Tiffany over a failed watch venture.

Tiffany TIF.N said it was considering an appeal.

An arbitration panel in the Netherlands had ordered Tiffany in December 2013 to pay Swatch 402 million Swiss francs ($404.5 million) in damages over the aborted project to produce and market watches.

Swatch had booked the money as one-off income in 2013, before a lower Dutch court overturned the panel’s ruling in 2015.

Swatch appealed against that decision and has now won the appeal, a spokesman for the court in Amsterdam said.

“Swatch Group was convinced that the arbitration award of December 21, 2013 was issued correctly and contained no formal error. This was confirmed by the judgment of the Court of Appeal of Amsterdam today,” the Swiss group said in a statement.

But Tiffany said the case might still go to another round.

“We have the right to appeal the Appellate Court’s decision to the Supreme Court of the Netherlands and are evaluating that option,” a company spokesman said by email in response to a query.

Swatch shares rose 1.9 percent by 1225 GMT, while Tiffany shares had not started trading.

Reporting by Zurich newsroom; Editing by Adrian Croft