One week into shelter-in-place restrictions and HoDinkee’s founder Benjamin Clymer has a plan! “I would encourage you, if you are looking to buy a watch, to buy it new and authorized,” his open letter pleads, “as those sales help retailers, distributors, and manufacturers stay afloat.” Save the watch industry! Buy from HoDinkee at full retail! Not kidding . . .
Mr. Clymer genuinely believes that what’s good for HoDinkee is good for everyone. And just in case you’re thinking I’m being cynical, how cynical is it to preface that appeal with this . . .
We are among the largest online authorized dealers of modern watches in the world. We already have hundreds of watches available from 16 different brands. And while our offices are closed, our warehouse is not. This means that we are able to fulfill orders.
But wait! It’s not all about me, HoDinkee’s jefe assures those of us who see this open letter as a thinly disguised sales pitch. I want to help the little guys – with crumbs from the master’s table.
I would like to personally offer up the HODINKEE Shop to those people who need active retail distribution at this time. We know it may not be forever, and we won’t be able to help everyone, but we will do our best to get as many products out there as possible so that revenue continues to come in and people can continue to be paid.
Hey little guys we’ve been doing our best to crush, use our distribution system! Uh, only for a while. And not ALL of you M’kay? And we’ll do our best. No promises! (We gotta take care of our own first.) And while we’re at it . . .
Finally, we’d been saving this one for our store opening, but we’d like to offer one example of every single HODINKEE Limited Edition for sale at its original retail price. Yup, we’ve been able to buy back one of each watch from the very beginning, and we want you guys to have the chance to buy them.
Nice! Sold out in seconds, of course. Benefitting HoDinkee. And finally . . .
I have made a promise to my employees that not a single person would lose their job throughout this, and I’d hope for nothing more than to have played a small part in saving many more jobs around the world. Because HODINKEE’s greatest accomplishment, and the achievement for which I am truly most proud, is not about education or entertainment, nor the sales of watches, but for the community, friendships, and trust that we have helped grow over the last twelve years.
Trust. This from the website that pretends to review watches objectively to sell said watches. While I’m genuinely delighted to hear that Mr. Clymer won’t be firing his 54 employees, what about making some kind of gesture – any kind of gesture – to the people who are really hurt by Coronageddon?
The right thing to do: pledge a percentage of every watch sale to a named charity, and keep a live tally of what’s received and where it goes. I also challenge Mr. Clymer to suspend all personal compensation during the pandemic. Which he might already be doing, but forgot to mention because, you know, sales.