I’ve been buying, selling, owning and valuing Rolex watches for over twenty years. In that time, I’ve worked for no less than four authorised distributors, as well as several second-hand specialists. I used to be a Rolex fan; I loved the history of the brand, the industry-leading developments, and the exciting watches used by explorers, specialists and professionals. As the years have passed, my love for the brand has slowly waned . . .
The Rolex shortage remains in full force. Certain models – the stainless steel Daytona, GMT-Master II and Submariner – might as well be made of unobtanium. Models further down the food chain – the stainless steel Explorer, Air King and Oyster Perpetual – aren’t sitting on the shelves, either. They come in, they go out to waiting customers. As we enter the New Year, strong demand has facilitated yet another Rolex price hike, as follows:
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 . . .