Open Letter To Bulgari CEO Jean-Christophe Babin: I’m Sorry, I Was Wrong. Whether Geneva Watch Days Runs Or Not In Late August 2020, It Was Worth Optimistically Planning For
by Ian Skellern
With Geneva Watch Days (GWD) now less than a month away (August 26-29), and COVID-19 outbreaks flaring up both in Europe and worldwide, I’m still hesitant enough not to have booked my travel and accommodation just yet. But it has become evident that there is a good chance the event will take place. And I very much hope it does.
But whether GWD takes place or not, and whether it’s deemed successful or not because of all the travel and quarantine restrictions, doesn’t change the fact that there was a good chance that it could have run very successfully. If we (meaning most of the world) hadn’t been so complacent about social distancing and wearing masks.
While I do still think that running the distributed event might contribute to the spread of the virus — not so much from visiting the brands, but from journalists, retailers, and collectors catching up over evening dinners and drinks, breakfasts and lunches, mixing in hotel lobbies, and taking public transport — I now feel that the potential upsides of helping to kickstart a ravaged watch industry outweighs the potential health risks.
I apologize, Mr. Babin, for my last open letter. It was an overreaction, and events have proved me wrong.
If the situation in Geneva and France remains stable for another week or so, I’ll be booking my trip and hope to (contritely) see you soon.
Regards, Ian Skellern