All over the world, as Covid-19 forces organisers to cancel events, many are determined that the show will go on. The Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie (FHH), whose Watches & Wonders Geneva 2020 (previously SIHH) was scheduled to open on April 25, is one. The foundation went all out to develop an alternative that would be ready in time for the original opening date and, rather than simply transposing the event online, the project rapidly gained in scope.
The watchesandwonders.com ecosystem will perfectly complement events organised by the FHH.
It’s been a few months since the foundation embarked on one of its most ambitious projects yet, namely to group all its educational and informative content, some of which was already online, on a single site. “We decided to fast-track the process whose objective is to develop an authentic digital ecosystem,” says Fabienne Lupo, Chairwoman and Managing Director of the FHH. “This new platform, watchesandwonders.com, will be active all year round. It will launch on the exact date that Watches & Wonders Geneva 2020 was scheduled to open and will perfectly complement events organised by the FHH. I’m thinking in particular of the various fairs taking place on different continents, as well as the exhibitions we’ll be hosting at our headquarters at the Pont de la Machine building in Geneva.”
30 participating brands
And so on April 25, backed by the 30 participating brands, watchesandwonders.com will open to the public. Adapting its logic to the current situation, the platform is giving first priority to the year’s new releases, which the Maisons will showcase in 10-minute streaming videos. The FHH is bringing its own expertise through informative content that will analyse emerging trends. The foundation has also called on the experts and collectors who make up its Cultural Council, who will be contributing their personal vision of current affairs and issues facing the industry.
The original features that helped forge the success of recent editions, such as panel discussions in the Auditorium and the LAB technology showcase, haven’t been forgotten. Visitors to watchesandwonders.com will soon be able to watch “business talk” videos as well as presentations of projects in R&D and other talking points such as sustainable development. Content will be offered “à la carte” to suit individual preferences and centres of interest.
Strategic partnerships are also on the agenda. Watchesandwonders.com has announced a first collaboration with Tmall Luxury Pavilion, China’s Alibaba Group’s dedicated platform for high-end brands. This rapprochement sets a more business-oriented perspective for some of the participating brands. “Watchesandwonders.com corresponds exactly to the FHH’s mission,” concludes Fabienne Lupo, “which is to be at the service of the Maisons, not only by giving them a platform for communication but also by developing expert content that confirms the foundation as an authoritative voice for the industry.”