If Apple sold 10 to 12 million smartwatches in its first year, as estimates show it has, the revenues generated would be around $4 to $5 billion. This figure comes close to Rolex’s revenue, the number one watchmaker in the world! Does this make Apple one of the biggest watchmakers in the world? Not quite.
Among the many highlights of SalonQP 2015 was the “Inside a Second” exhibition of chronographs presented in partnership with the Foundation de la Haute Horlogerie. The exhibition included the George Daniels co-axial four-minute tourbillon with Daniels’ compact chronograph mechanism. And that would have been enough chronograph for me all by itself, but there were many more highlights.
The Goodwood Festival of Speed is an automotive pilgrimage; it is to cars what Glastonbury is to music. My father and I have often made the journey from our respective homes in Sussex and Oxfordshire to meet on the Friday, the opening day of the festival, to see the amazing spectacle that takes place at this hill climb. And, of course, what watches did I see at the event?
I thought that the Mille Miglia was absolutely crazy and was amazed that an event like that could be held at all. Only in Italy . . . or so I thought until recently when I learnt more about the insane Carrera Panamericana.
The 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance race is legendary among motorsports enthusiasts, and I was overjoyed to have been Chopard’s guest during what is for many the most famous motorsport race in the world. At this year’s event I counted a great number of watch brands in attendance in some way including Rolex, Chopard, TAG Heuer, Rebellion, and Franck Muller.
A few weeks ago, I had the very enjoyable experience of attending a day hosted by Audemars Piguet and the Watch Enthusiasts of New York (WENY) filled with watches, watchmaking, and lively conversation. In the evening, we were treated to something that for me was quite unusual but that in the world of luxury goods marketing is commonplace: an interaction with one of the brand’s ambassadors, in this case Sir Nick Faldo. Read on to learn what is it that leads watch brands to engage celebrities.
On December 11, 2014, TAG Heuer CEO Stéphane Linder announced the resignation of his position after only 18 months at the post. Having been at TAG Heuer for 21 years, Linder was elevated to his current position after previous CEO Jean-Christophe Babin relocated to sibling brand Bulgari. What is the master strategy behind this and other moves at LVMH as orchestrated by Jean-Claude Biver?
In this final round table discussion, my Quill & Pad colleagues Ian, Joshua, Gary and I discuss the amazing night that was. I am glad to talk about this incredible event and provide a few behind-the-scenes insights. Being on the jury for the third time in a row this year, I knew what to expect and could relax enough to enjoy the discussions and preparations.
Now we get to the real nitty-gritty at the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève.: the Aiguille d’Or. There are no ifs, and or buts any more, just a decision on which of the 72 pre-selected watches is the best overall timepiece of the year. It is the most prestigious of the awards given.
Which could be our panel’s favorite to win? The Margot by Christophe Claret? Urwerk EMC? Perhaps the De Bethune DB29 Maxichrono Tourbillon? Or will it be something else entirely?
The Petite Aiguille category is for watches under 8,000 Swiss francs (approx $8,500). The contenders are Bell & Ross BR03-92 Ceramic Black Matte, Chopard Grand Prix de Monaco Historique Chrono, Montblanc Meisterstück Heritage Moonphase, Seiko Grand Seiko Hi-Beat 36,000 GMT, TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 1887 Chronographe “Racing,” and the Zenith El Primero Synopsis.