Earlier this year, Patek Philippe announced it wouldn’t be introducing any “novelties” for 2020. No surprise there. Why stimulate demand and spend precious marketing money in a Coronageddon sales void? Watchpro.com reports that the Swiss watchmaker is reversing course. Patek Philippe dealers will get new-for-2020 product. What’s that all about? . . .
Smart watches are a huge technological leap over quartz and mechanical watches. In many ways, smart watches render traditional timepieces obsolete. But not in one important way. Not yet. But soon. It’s only a question of time. Here’s the challenge . . .
“Under bursts of rain and occasional rumbles of thunder, protesters packed the streets in several areas of Hong Kong on Saturday,” The New York Times reports, “days after both the demonstrators and the police came under criticism for taking violence and mayhem to new levels.” Not a great time or place to sell a luxury watch then. And that has major repercussions for the international watch business . . .
The RealReal is an online luxury consignment company. You send them your unwanted luxury goods, they inspect them, price them, sell them and take a cut. Like so many disruptive tech firms, TRR isn’t making money. But they are selling a lot of pre-owned watches. And generating some interesting if potentially misleading data points. For example . . .
When demand exceeds supply, prices goes up, availability goes down. That’s where we are when it comes to buying a box-fresh steel Rolex Daytona, Patek Philippe Aquanaut or Audemars Piguet Royal Oak. And that’s where we’re going to stay for the foreseeable future; none of these watchmakers plan to increase supply to match demand. So how the hell do you get a new one from an authorized dealer? Start with this . . .