The Swiss watchmaker's second collaboration with the Godfather of Streetwear, Hiroshi Fujiwara, has produced a one-of-a-kind chrono, equipped with the Heuer 02 manufacture movement.
The two partners embarked on a very personal journey to create a unique masterpiece: a Rolls-Royce Wraith Black Badge inspired by Franck Muller’s famous Crazy Hours.
Call it a love-hate relationship. While watchmakers have embraced social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, etc.), they have been more than wary about online selling opportunities, although recent developments suggest the web has succeeded, to some extent, in breaking down resistance.
Experts, analysts and journalists have already delivered their end-of-year forecasts based on Swiss watch exports at September 30th, and predict a fall of 5% in volume terms but an increase in value terms of 2% on 2012. With little reason to believe these estimates will vary greatly between now and the end of the year, results for 2013 are likely to be in sharp contrast with last year's strong performance. The segment closest to our heart, namely watches with an export price above CHF 1,500, confirms a rise in exports of 1% in quantity and 2% in value, which indicates a stable market.
A new calibre and a new factory: in November, Tag Heuer officially opened its manufacturing facilities in the Swiss town of Chevenez, in the Jura region. By 2016, production of in-house movements is scheduled to double to 100,000 a year.
The autumn session in Geneva totalled CHF 58.84 million, CHF 40.27 million of which were realised by Christie's. While Patek Philippe and Rolex continue to bring in the highest bids, other brands attracted a surprising amount of interest, Longines and Panerai among them. Several of their watches outperformed estimates by a considerable margin.
While not exactly the year's most exciting awards, the 13th Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève proved more interesting than expected. Alongside such big names as Girard-Perregaux, A. Lange & Söhne, Chopard, Zenith and Chanel, the evening rewarded an impressive line-up of independent watchmakers, the likes of Philippe Dufour, Romain Gauthier, Kari Voutilainen and Vianney Halter. Even so, too many important brands were left off the honours list.
The Hong Kong Watch and Clock Fair (HKW&CF) assembles the largest number of watch, clock, parts and industry exhibitors of any timepiece fair in the world. It is held in the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre which looks out directly onto Hong Kong's beautiful Victoria Harbour, one of the world's most impressive natural waterways. The fair is run by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) which organised about 80 overseas buying missions to the fair, along with 30 special activities ranging from watch-fashion shows and product launches to seminars and networking receptions.