Winds of Change
hange is, of course, inevitable in the watchmaking business. But even as the Swiss watch industry picks itself up after weathering the effects of the global financial crisis, other developments irreversibly changes the landscape. For one, the watchmaking world has lost two influential figures: Walter Lange, founder of A. Lange & Söhne, and Roger Dubuis, founder of his own eponymous brand, both passed away this year.
We’ve also seen shifts in top management in top brands like Corum and Zenith, followed by the acquisition of Breitling by CVC. This marks the second major M&A following last year’s acquisition of Frederique Constant by Citizen Group. The aftermath of these changes will decide the course of the industry in the years to come—and that’s putting it mildly.
It is, however, quite heartening to see the industry opening its door ever wider. Case in point, for the first time ever, we see the prestigious SIHH fair opening its doors to the general public. At the same time, we’re also seeing more and more brands introducing more and more entry level timepieces. It certainly paves the way for budding enthusiasts to take their first steps into the world of fine watches.
All that being said, change has always been a part of the watch world; so, perhaps these new developments shouldn’t surprise us all that much. On the other hand, I can’t help but feel that, combined, these changes will have a ripple effect that we will be digging through next year and in the years to come.
And, naturally, big changes aside, the year has seen no shortage of novelties to be excited about: From Hublot’s collaboration with Berluti to Omega’s already-legendary trilogy and many more. So, as always, I invite you to delve into another year’s worth of top notch watchmaking.