A total of $7.7 million for Christie’s December watches sales
Christie’s Important Watches and American Icons live auction totaled $6.2 million. Combined, both live and online sales achieved a total of $7.7 million. The top lot of the live sale was the highly-complicated and exceptional Patek Philippe reference 5016P, that sold for $471,000. Other notable results included an exceptionally rare Patek Philippe reference 3450, retailed by Tiffany & Co., which sold for $350,000, as well as an extremely fine and very rare stainless Rolex reference 6264, ”Musketeer Paul Newman”, that realized $200,000. The dedicated section of American Icons was 100% sold, which featured the paired lot of two pocket watches belonging to Ernest Hemingway and Charles C. Ritz, that sold for more than double the estimate achieving $43,750; the two Patek Philippe timepieces formerly belonging to the 41st President of the United States, George H. W. Bush, with the Ref. 3940 selling for $81,250 and the Ref. 3445 realizing $62,500.
Audemars Piguet Appoints Southeast Asia CEO
Luxury Swiss watchmaker Audemars Piguet has appointed Stefanie Ng as CEO, Southeast Asia, including India and Australia, The Business Times reported. Ng is intimately familiar with the industry and luxury marketing in the region, having joined the company as a regional marketing manager in 2012, a role in which she was responsible for AP’s marketing-related activities across nine markets across Southeast Asia, with a focus on its retail business. Prior to that, she spent eight years in various marketing appointments. She takes over from Joshua King, who left AP in April after one-and-a-half years in the role.
Panerai’s new warranty program
The launch of Pam.Guard, an expansive care program developed to promote deep engagement with the Panerai’s world, is the brand’s latest project to expand and enhance customer experience. Participation in the program officially extends the international limited warranty for eligible watches up to eight years. Pam.Guard has debuted November 26, 2019. The result is a portal that offers an unprecedented connection to the brand. The first step to access the world of Pam.Guard to activate the international limited warranty limited extension is creating a personal profile using the intuitive, user-friendly interface found at panerai.com. Once a profile is active, users will be able to register their watches online. The Pam.Guard program is retroactive and customers owing a watch purchased over the last two years prior to the program launch can benefit from the Pam.Guard international limited warranty extension.
Richard Mille turn over near 1 billion
The watchmaker Richard Mille will end the year with growth in sales and volumes. The Maison is still planning to stop sales of its watches via retailers by the end of 2019. The consolidated turnover including Richard Mille boutiques is expected around 900 million francs for this year. As for volumes, they will settle at 4,900 this year, after 4,600 in 2018. Next year, the manufacture of Breuleux aims 5,200 units. The average price of a Richard Mille watch is currently at 180’000 francs while it was under 100’000 ten years ago. Regarding the evolution of the distribution network, Richard Mille confirmed its intention to end partnership with the thirty retailers still selling the brand. Richard Mille currently has 42 stores and targets 50. Some 200 employees work in shops and 170 in production at the Breuleux factory.
Baselworld 2020 without Seiko
Seiko has attended Baselworld every year since international brands were first invited in 1986. The company has built its annual program around Baselworld and, for 30 years, Baselworld has been the occasion of the international launch of the new Seiko, and more recently, Grand Seiko collections. The timing of Baselworld 2020 is considerably later than in previous years. The new date is too late for the launch of the Seiko collection and is particularly challenging for Grand Seiko for which the brand has a special program in celebration of the sixtieth anniversary of its creation. As a result, Seiko has decided that its two brands will not be present at Baselworld in 2020. The Maison will hold regional and national events of its own for both Grand Seiko and Seiko at the earliest opportunity so that media representatives and retail partners can see the new collections and experience the latest developments in the Seiko and Grand Seiko worlds.
LVMH Reaches Agreement with Tiffany & Co.
LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton SE (LVMH), the world’s leading luxury group and Tiffany & Co., the global luxury jeweler, today announced that the companies have entered into a definitive agreement whereby LVMH will acquire Tiffany for $135 per share in cash, in a transaction with an equity value of approximately €14.7 billion or $16.2 billion. For more than 180 years, Tiffany has been synonymous with elegance, innovative design, fine craftsmanship and creative excellence. Since 1886, when it established the eponymous diamond ring as an enduring symbol of commitment, Tiffany has stood for love. Its extraordinary diamonds are cherished for generations and its legendary jewelry designs are a reference in the global jewelry world. Even the Tiffany Blue Box is recognized worldwide as an icon of refinement and desirability.
IWC extends its international warranty from two to eight years
Since 1903, the “Probus Scafusia” seal has embodied IWC Schaffhausen’s sandards for quality of its products. Now, the Swiss watch manufacturer renews this promise to its customers by introducing the ‘My IWC’ programme, which includes an offer to extend the International Limited Warranty from two to eight years. From now on, every buyer of an IWC watch can join the ‘My IWC’ programme. Upon successful registration, the International Limited Warranty will be extended from two to eight years. The programme is also available retroactively. Watch enthusiasts who have purchased their IWC watch within the last two years, and are still covered by the original warranty, can also register.
Technology is eating the brand world
Interbrand released tis Best Global Brands 2019 Report, the 20th edition of the world’s first brand valuation survey, showing that Apple, Google, Amazon, and Microsoft continue their success as the world’s four most valuable brands worldwide. The top growing sector for 2019 was luxury and retail with 15 brands making the top 100; this sector sees the highest average brand value growth rate year-over-year at 11%. The most successful brands in the luxury space are those that have adapted to rapid changes in the global marketplace, including catering to a younger consumer base. Gucci (#33) was emblematic of the luxury sector’s success, showing a 23 percent increase in brand value. Venerable brands Louis Vuitton (#17) and Chanel (#22) saw a 14% and an 11% increase, respectively, since last year’s report.
Only Watch 2019: € 38’593’000 raised
Saturday 9th November was the apex of a journey on which the watch industry has embarked on with Only Watch. A journey which started on July 1st by unveiling the names of the participating watch brands. This was followed by the world tour exhibition. Only Watch held its 8th auction of unique timepieces in Geneva led by Christie’s in a packed and dynamic saleroom. The sale took over two hours as interest in each lot was overwhelmingly high and concluded with a record-breaking result of CHF 42,452,300 / € 38’593’000. The auction included a Patek Philippe lot (28) that was auctioned for the historic amount of CHF 34,100,000 / € 31,000,000.