Watches & Wonders Cancelled

Watches & Wonders – the Swiss watch get-together formerly known as Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) – has been cancelled. Without mentioning the coronavirus by name, the organizers made their decision “to protect the health and wellbeing of all our guests” (statement below). It’s only a matter of time – and not much of it – before Baselworld bows out. What does that mean for the Swiss watch industry? First, consider what would have happened at Watches & Wonders . . .

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Swiss Watch Glut Getting Worse

Who could keep up with all the watches released during Watches and Wonders? HoDinkee! Editorially enabled by an online shop pimping 29 watch brands. Here on the one-man-band side of things, the horological Niagara left me bleary eyed, a bit bored and confused. How is this a good idea? The CEO of Herm├Ęs’ watches agrees that it isn’t, and provided bloomberg.com with an explanation for the Swiss watch glut . . .

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Green Nautilus Nothingburger

When Patek Philippe announced it was discontinuing the blue dial 5711 Nautilus (above) the uproar was deafening. I can only imagine the irate phone calls to Patek dealers from wealthy customers who’d been on the model’s waiting list for years. Up to eight years. Patek’s CEO Thierry Stern tut-tutted and announced that the salon would offer a temporary replacement. A horological swan song if you will. During Watches and Wonders, they dropped the steel sunburst olive green dial Nautilus . . .

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Swatch to Trade Fairs – Drop Dead

“Longines CEO Matthias Breschan says Swatch Group brands will not return to vast global trade shares like Baselworld or Watches and Wonders,” watchpro.com reports. Shares or fairs, no matter how you slice it, Mr. Breschan’s announcement will send shock waves throughout the entire watch industry. The Swatch Group owns 18 watch brands, from upmarket Harry Winston to mass market Swatch. Their decision to ditch the big shows . . .

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Jaeger-LeCoultre – Four of the Best

Jaeger-LeCoultre versus Rolex is an ongoing debate in the watch nerd world. Jaeger-LeCoultre makes nicer watches than Rolex, that’s just a simple fact. Also true: Rolex is a vastly more popular brand. But popularity isn’t always a virtue. In an uncertain world, flying under the radar can be an advantage. JLC is a great way to go . . .

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