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Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by gdl203, May 20, 2007.
The Richemont brands tend to be run independently though.
this is gorgeous.
i would like to independently run a richemont brand.
it sure is.
This is VERY cool.
Not up to the level shown around here but I love my Zenith El Primero that I work today, chocolate gator strap:
^^ that is a beautiful watch, we just sold the same one with a brown strap yesterday. love it ^^
my wallet is always feeling a recession.
That style of lug was made very popular on vintage Vacherons. VC tended to make them look a bit fuller, and they are often refered to as tear drop lugs.
Sounds like a good trade. I'm sure you will enjoy the new watch.
Hi Stitch. I think the Nick Hayek, Jr. interview sounds good...but its nonsense. He isn't going to come out and say, I don't like people discounting our watches so we are closing their accounts and opening our own boutiques. I've visited boutiques for various watch companies, Breguet, GP, VC, AP, Rolex, Breitling, to name a few. And I will admit the people in AP and GP were very nice an know a great deal about their watches. However, the other boutiques...not really. They were average sales people at best. I knew more than the sales person at VC and she couldn't answer a fairly simple question about a watch that was on display. She had to look it up on their computer.
Around me 2 family owned watch and jewelry stores that were AD's for Rolex for nearly 50 years, lost Rolex. Then 2 very large chains nearby started carrying Rolex. These chains also have a policy of not discounting anything. Personally, I think one of the chains is actually quite tacky and doesn't carry any other nice merchandise so its like they put their merchdise in a store that is beneath them, and it looks out of place.. One of the same dealers is still a Patek, GO, and Tag dealer, but they also recently lost JLC, IWC, Chopard, and Cartier. In the last few years Rolex closed out accounts with many ADs in the nation (not sure how many). Cartier has closed accounts with something like 140 ADs in the last 2 years or so and a friend who works at an AD for Cartier said they are always having discussions at work about pricing and moving toward a strategy where ADs won't discount. Basically the trend is in big cities open Boutiques and in other areas limit the number of ADs. With fewer ADs people have fewer shopping options and there is less competition between ADs and less need to discount. In addition with AD's giving little or no discounts, they don't pull as many sales from boutiques.
I think no matter where you go, there are ADs and boutiques with some great sales people that are truly interested in the watches and clients, and who have a lot of knowledge, and then there are very ordinary sales people that detract from ADs and boutiques.
exclusivity and increasing profits
great post, dino.
i think that there is probably a lot of truth to what you are saying, and obviously hayek was not in a position to say what all the true motivators were for the change. even what he did say earned him a lot of flak iirc.
the change was probably due to a combination of wanting to limit discounts and over saturation, that leads to less brand value. as well increasing exclusivity, which promotes brand value and prestige. increasing profits. and lastly, being in control, to an extent, over who sells their goods, so that they are sold in the fashion they want. ie - by knowledgable SAs who are genuinely interested in fine time pieces.
and tbh, even to it may hurt the consumers wallet, and make finding the watch you want at all, let alone at the price you want, more difficult, im not sure it is really a bad thing over all.
firstly, and perhaps most importantly, they are the owners of the product, and have the right to establish what price they want these products sold for. peoples desire for a discount, should not really force their hand to apply one. its their stuff.
secondly, the price the items are sold for, do affect the brand image. no one views omega as an elite or expensive watch, because you can buy them for close to 50% off all day. that hurts the brand.
now, is profit a motivator? sure. certainly they are all in business to make money, but i do think that they also feel a sense of pride in their brand image, and that it is something they want to keep as pristine as possible. except when they decide to totally sell out and cash in only on name, and sell mediocre watches, but lately, things are trending towards most fine watch companies doing their best to make fine watches.
and the only way to sell something for a lot of money, is when people view your wares, as something valuable. all these things play to that end. smaller discounts, exclusivity... they all add to the image of value, and the sense of satisfaction a consumer feels when they get their hands on such a product. no ones wants to shell out a lot of money, and feel like they didnt get what they paid for.
so, do i like these changes, im not entirely sure. but i certainly understand where they are coming from, and why they are being made.
also, lets not forget, on the back end, the more exclusive and valuable these watches are, the more money one can get on the back end, in the resale market. if its hard to get your hands on a watch, it makes it more valuable across the board.
just my 2c.
/stitchys long post of the day.
The biggest problem with the proliferation of watch boutiques and attrition of multi-brand ones, is that it's becoming harder to pick a watch. People like to compare: do I want this rolex or that omega? Let me try both on, etc... How many people go to Tourneau or Wempe and try only one brand before making a purchase?
The boutique strategy is indeed to exercise greater control and build brand equity, but it's also to retain a much greater margin on the product, eliminating the distribution channel's margin.
also, some people go to wempe and try on lots of watches, and dont buy anything.
And drink their Pellegrino water.
gdl makes a good point - the problem with boutiques is that they limit you to one brand.
Not that I am a watch buyer, but on two occasions, I thought I might be and had a very good experience at Wempe.
On one occasion, I thought I might want a Rolex Explorer and told the salesperson what I wanted and why I wanted it and what I was looking for in a watch: tough case, highly legible dial, bulletproof reliability (for a mechanical watch) so I could wear it all the time (shower, sports, etc.), moderate size and no date (I am offended by the idea that date mechanisms don't really work except on perpetual calendar complications). He showed me the Explorer, but also opened my eyes to a nice Air King with a similar dial and an IWC and Vacheron (they might have had dates). I decided not to buy anything. But if I would have bought something, the salesman would have gotten the sale and really added value. Same when I went in looking for a JLC ultra-thin as a dress watch. The salesmen showed me the Vacheron Master Extra-Plate, which has become my grail watch. You can't get that experience in a brand-only boutique. On the other hand, they are perfect for collectors and WIS types who really get in to knowing particular brands.
yeah dopey. you and gdl make a legit point. i did not think of that.
personally, as a watch geek, whenever i buy a watch, i have already researched it, and know exactly what i want. its just a matter of finding the most convenient place to buy, and for the most desirable price, considering all factors.
but for many, or more likely, most people, that is not the way they shop. and there is certainly great value in being able to go into a place and view many options, and be uducated as to what is out there and what is comparable, and what watches have the features they are looking for. the only caveat being, that the people in the store know anything, and are helpful.
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