ESQ&A

Esquire heads to Florence, Italy where Mont­blanc launched the 1926 Her­itage leather goods col­lec­tion. Jens Hen­ning Koch, Ex­ec­u­tive Vice Pres­i­dent of Mont­blanc, speaks to us about the in­cep­tion of the Mont­blanc leather goods range, what sets it apart from

Esquire (Singapore) - - Contents -

Chiara Scagli, CEO of La Perla’s Asia Pa­cific di­vi­sion.

Esquire: Could you talk about the his­tory of the Mont­blanc leather goods range? Why did the mai­son de­cide to ex­pand into that area? Jens Hen­ning Koch: Mont­blanc started with pens in 1906, and we cre­ated a com­pletely new level of qual­ity and so­phis­ti­ca­tion for writ­ing in­stru­ments. Then the topic be­came how to pro­tect the writ­ing in­stru­ments, and so we moved into cre­at­ing pen pouches. Us­ing that same ap­proach to qual­ity, it was a small step to crafting our own leather goods.

Over time, we re­alised our mai­son should have its own leather man­u­fac­turer. Rather than chal­leng­ing oth­ers to live up to our de­mands, we started a leather fac­tory in Ger­many, be­fore moving it to Florence, Italy, which is the epi­cen­tre of qual­ity leather prod­ucts, and where the tra­di­tion of great workmanship has been passed down from gen­er­a­tion to gen­er­a­tion. That’s ex­actly what we want for the kind of col­lec­tion that we’re launch­ing to­day.

Esquire: Small leather goods is such a sat­u­rated mar­ket. How can some­thing from Mont­blanc stand out? Jens Hen­ning Koch: One of the core pil­lars of Mont­blanc is in­no­va­tion and per­for­mance, and the lat­ter is es­pe­cially im­por­tant to us. From ro­bots toss­ing the bags and test­ing the han­dles, to mim­ick­ing wear-and-tear to see if the colour rubs off, we have one of the best re­search and de­vel­op­ment cen­tres for test­ing qual­ity.

An­other core pil­lar is func­tion­al­ity. We rarely do things just for the style of it. Ide­ally, a new el­e­ment should have a func­tion when it is in­te­grated into our prod­ucts—whether it is pro­tect­ing your credit card from be­ing read or af­fix­ing a re­mov­able pouch to your bag.

Qual­ity test­ing, func­tional design and skilled crafts­man­ship are the three el­e­ments that drive Mont­blanc and make our goods de­sir­able. Esquire: Speak­ing of the 1926 Her­itage Col­lec­tion that Mont­blanc is launch­ing to­day, is it a huge depar­ture from the rest of the ac­ces­sories range? Jens Hen­ning Koch: It’s not a depar­ture in that sense, but rather an ad­di­tion of a new leather of­fer­ing. Mont­blanc started as a spe­cial­ist in writ­ing in­stru­ments, but it is due to the rel­e­vance and the growth of our watch and leather goods di­vi­sions that we have de­vel­oped into a mai­son that em­bod­ies the lux­ury life­style.

Over the last few years, we have im­proved our life­style of­fer­ings, be­cause there has been a change in the way that peo­ple con­duct business. The younger gen­er­a­tion don’t see their pro­fes­sional and personal lives as sep­a­rate en­ti­ties; in­stead, they have merged into a 24/7 life­style. They head to work, are off to the gym dur­ing lunch, and meet a po­ten­tial client at night. This means they de­sire ver­sa­til­ity be­cause they have a less for­mal ap­proach to life.

With this new mind­set as a key con­sid­er­a­tion, Mont­blanc wanted to cap­ture the sin­gu­lar­ity of our younger cus­tomers with the Her­itage Col­lec­tion. The ur­ban ex­plorer, or the ur­ban no­mad if you will, re­quires ver­sa­til­ity when trav­el­ling from city to city, and from one oc­ca­sion to the next. Fea­tur­ing veg­etable-tanned leather, each piece is unique, be­cause for the younger gen­er­a­tion, it’s not about ex­press­ing a par­tic­u­lar code, but rather them­selves, and they se­lect personal items that re­flect their story and sense of in­di­vid­u­al­ism.

“Mont­blanc started as a spe­cial­ist in writ­ing in­stru­ments, but it is due to the rel­e­vance and the growth of our watch and leather goods di­vi­sions that we have de­vel­oped into a mai­son that em­bod­ies the lux­ury life­style.” – Jens Hen­ning Koch

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Singapore

© PressReader. All rights reserved.