With the economy back in business and exports on the rise again, brands are newly inclined to show off their capacity for innovation and imagination. Here are some of the watches from the stream of recent releases.
Xi Jinping’s call for “common prosperity” sent shudders through the stock market. This new policy, which portends a drop in purchasing power for the wealthiest Chinese, pushed down luxury share prices, which includes watch brands. What implications does this have?
Greubel Forsey’s new manufacture, just outside La Chaux-de-Fonds, makes a subtle nod to the brand’s timepieces whose technical complexity has borne a certain influence on how the space is organised.
Symbolically at least, this is how it began. When Lehman Brothers collapsed in September 2008, a wave of panic swept through the world’s financial markets and the global economy. How has this affected the watch segment, which this year risks a shortfall of between three and four billion Swiss francs?
Christmas is a critical period for watch brands, with some making up to 40% of their annual revenues over the holiday season. This year, the majority have put together strategies aimed at boosting declining sales.
Autumn is auction season in Geneva, with the legendary Patek Philippe Calibre 89 totalling 33 complications coming under the hammer at Antiquorum. The Genevan manufacture is also in the spotlight at Sotheby’s, alongside Vacheron Constantin, Cartier, and two collections of enamel pocket watches.
Like the Manufacture in Geneva where its watchmakers are trained, Patek Philippe’s service centre in Spain has the expertise to repair contemporary watches and restore vintage models.
No courses have been cancelled and, after a slighter smaller intake this year, the number of places will increase in 2010.