In this article retail expert John Keil explains how and why the gray market for watches exists.
About John Keil
I am Quill & Pad’s resident retail expert. I have spent a handful of years on the wholesale side of the watch industry as the U.S. national sales manager of a brand and 14 years managing a fine watch and jewelry retailer.
I left retail a few years ago to do my “own thing,” which consists of consulting for watch retailers with the aim of improving their businesses, working with private watch collectors in various ways, and as a freelance project manager. In 2015, as a hobby I started a small (now defunct) blog about watches, posting every day. Surprisingly, I enjoyed the heck out of it.
I write about anything related to timepieces, however you shouldn’t expect that I take myself too seriously. I may even make you laugh from time to time.
Entries by John Keil
Horophiles are pretty unique people and we have some pretty unique traits and habits. In the theme of Jeff Foxworthy and his “you might be a redneck if” routine, John Keil pokes a little fun at our WIS brothers and sisters (and ourselves). So without further ado, you know you’re a watch guy if . . .
Waking up one morning with his coffee, John Keil was scrolling through the headlines on ‘Business Insider’ when he came across a post entitled “Science Says You Shouldn’t Buy Luxury Brands.” With all due respect to author Elizabeth Lang he thought, ‘screw science and buy luxury watches!’
If John Keil was to recommend a brand-new functional diver’s watch to a friend who was looking to spend within a certain price range, these would be his suggestions. Or, more specifically, here is what he would purchase himself in a variety of price categories.
In the theme of Jeff Foxworthy and his “you might be a redneck if” routine, John Keil pokes a little fun at our WIS brothers and sisters as well as ourselves. So without further ado, you know you’re a watch guy if . . .
Watch advertisements have always fascinated John Keil. If an ad is clever, funny, or invokes a special feeling within him, he is much more likely to make a purchase. Here he offers here a few clever adverts that work for him and hopefully for you too.
John Keil has never owned a Rolex – despite the fact that he is a big watch nut – and here’s why. Firstly, though, he makes it clear that he hasn’t got anything at all against Rolex. The brand makes great watches . . . but there’s a but.
Friends, colleagues, and clients have posed many questions about the grey market for fine timepieces over the years. Most recently, my post ‘A Cautionary Tale on Buying New Watches Online’ was met with quite a few comments, quite possibly leaving more questions than answers. Here are a few answers.
Timepiece repairs can be expensive and often take a long time, so you generally want to avoid damaging a watch. John Keil lists five common things you may not be aware of that can damage a watch and how to prevent them.
As the saying goes, “There’s an ass for every seat.” John Keil still finds it hard to believe that some watch designs are ever even considered, much less actually produced and ultimately purchased. In fairness, the following list may not actually contain the five ugliest watches ever, but they sure aren’t easy on the eyes.