Introducing Beaubleu, a new vision for watches?

April 2018

Introducing Beaubleu, a new vision for watches?

The French start-up brand promises “a new vision of watchmaking” based on high creativity, poetry, and innovation. But have they delivered?

Experience tells me that new watch brands have a way of presenting their projects in very prosaic and grandiose terms. And I don’t blame them for it. They need to make a splash from the get-go in a hyper competitive industry where start-ups can have a lifespan shorter than that of a battery of a quartz movement.

In an effort to make a memorable first impression, the introductory press kit of new brand Beaubleu – a name which seems to be a mash-up of the French words for “beautiful” and “blue”- kicked off with a quote by French poet Charles Baudelaire: “Beautiful is always strange”.

Introducing Beaubleu, a new vision for watches?

It was then followed up with references to Paris, and the existence of being, and something about how experience shapes character.

Now, I like Baudelaire as much as the next watch aficionado, and the quote gave me the expectation that the creations by Beaubleu would be both beautiful and strange.

On first take, the beauty seems to be there. But nothing about this new release strikes me as particularly strange. Rather, it strikes me as a young brand attempting to create a narrative around their brand to make it more relatable, and hopefully more successful in the long run.

Introducing Beaubleu, a new vision for watches?

What seems to be clear is that the Paris-based brand seems to be focusing on a younger demographic, specifically those with disposable income that are looking for a new high-end experiences at a fair price.

Fair is an important word here (and not least because Baudelaire himself was crippled by poverty, but that’s another story). As far as pricing goes, Beaubleu watches do seems to be fairly priced, with the first release retailing for 595 Euro online.

The first model is the Beaubleu B01, and elegant watch that looks to be well proportioned in a 42mm stainless steel case, which is also available in black and rose gold PVD coating.

The elegant new Beaubleu B01 wristwatch
The elegant new Beaubleu B01 wristwatch

Besides its elegant dial protected by a sapphire crystal, the B01 is defined by hands that are outlines of circles that rotate around the dial and intersect their respective markers to indicate the time.

The B01 is powered by an automatic movement sourced from Japan, specifically the reliable and affordable Miyota 9015 movement. It has been decorated in this application to make it a bit more special.

And a sense of “special” is what Beaubleu seems to be going for here. Their timepieces will be released as limited editions of between 125-500, likely an attempt to give the brand an early air of exclusivity. That, or they still don’t have the capacity for wider production, which is not necessarily a bad thing.

The brand also attempts to make the transaction of purchasing a timepiece a more personal experience. That means that after the order is made the customer receives a handwritten letter with pictures of the timepiece being made. It’s a nice touch to be sure, giving a sort of “behind-the-scenes” look at the process.

Introducing Beaubleu, a new vision for watches?

It’s also a clever way to get customers more invested in the brand, which will be supplemented by personalized invitations for customers to private Beaubleu events in the future.

The long term strategy seems to be to seek out experts from all over the world to develop professional relationships with innovators and share a vision to promote creativity, to further innovation, and to develop very quality products. Given this strategy and its online presence, this start-up seems to be on the right track.