“We’re in a unique po­si­tion of rep­re­sent­ing a fam­ily-owned brand in a world full of con­glom­er­ates”

DA MAN - Caliber - - INSIDERS -

DA: Will Chopard add more en­try-level pieces con­sid­er­ing cur­rent mar­ket con­di­tions? KFS: We al­ready have a very nice of­fer­ing of L.U.C. watches in steel, from the Time Trav­eler model to the XP to the Per­pet­ual Chrono. For the mo­ment, there’s noth­ing to add. We’re quite well po­si­tioned, not to men­tion the Mille Miglia and other more af­ford­able ranges we cur­rently have. And what we have ex­pe­ri­enced so far is that we con­tinue sell­ing the com­pli­cated pieces as long as they are rare, ex­clu­sive and beau­ti­ful. Let’s not for­get that Chopard does not pro­duce 200,000 watches a year like some other com­pa­nies. It’s not right to com­pletely change your phi­los­o­phy only be­cause of a par­tic­u­lar eco­nomic trend. We tend to be more con­sis­tent, and I be­lieve the of­fer­ing in stain­less steel can al­ready be an an­swer to the mar­ket. DA: On the other hand, Chopard has pi­o­neered the use of Fairmined gold in watch­mak­ing and jew­elry since last year. What’s the big pic­ture? KFS: Some clients re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate it and even ask for it. Other clients don’t buy a L.U.C watch be­cause it uses Fairmined [gold], but be­cause they like the aesthetics. We’ve been do­ing it to at­tract at­ten­tion to the is­sue [of fair trade in gold min­ing] and hope that our sup­pli­ers will catch on—and this is ac­tu­ally hap­pen­ing. Right now, or­ga­niz­ing the sup­ply for just our­selves is cum­ber­some and com­pli­cated. We have to keep the dif­fer­ent types of gold sep­a­rate, ad­min­is­tra­tively and lo­gis­ti­cally. But we’ve been do­ing it be­cause we be­lieve that, in the long run, more clients will ask for it, and the pro­fes­sional sup­pli­ers will have to catch on. DA: What about other brands? Will Chopard try to in­flu­ence them to use Fairmined gold? KFS: The only one who can in­flu­ence the brands is the cus­tomers them­selves. So, what we do is we try to in­form the con­sumers about the pos­si­bil­ity of buy­ing sus­tain­able Fairmined gold in­stead of other types of gold. I think the more peo­ple know about it, the more they will be ask­ing from other brands, too. One of our ma­jor sup­pli­ers is con­sid­er­ing the same ser­vice but on a big­ger scale. If that hap­pens, we will have com­pleted a big part of our jour­ney to sus­tain­able lux­ury. DA: Speak­ing of lux­ury, the ex­hi­bi­tion of the L.U.C XP Urushi at Basel­world is re­ally beau­ti­ful. How im­por­tant is enam­el­ing to the Chopard man­u­fac­ture? KFS: Un­for­tu­nately, we don’t have an in-house enam­el­ing de­part­ment at the man­u­fac­ture yet. We are work­ing on that. It re­ally is the only crafts­man­ship that we don’t have at the mo­ment. Talk­ing about Urushi, it’s im­por­tant to show­case this crafts­man­ship prop­erly since we’ve been do­ing that for a while. Even for my­self, when I see the col­lec­tion, it re­minds me of how much hard work poured into the cre­ative pro­duc­tion. It’s just amaz­ing crafts­man­ship. DA: Will there be a brand am­bas­sador for the L.U.C col­lec­tion this year? KFS: We never be­lieve in hav­ing per­ma­nent am­bas­sadors for the men’s col­lec­tion. We have some am­bas­sadors for an event or two at Cannes, but it’s not an idea that we en­ter­tain all year round. Our men’s prod­ucts should sell on their own. I don’t think that men

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