Roamer at Maturity

March 2006

In its way, the very Swiss watch brand, Titoni, is an exception. It is a company that is 100 percent independent, totally auto-financed and is active in the mid-range market segment. And, as its owner and Managing Director, Daniel Schluep, says, “It is also still rofitable,” and expects to remain so for a very long time.


Competence Lady ROYALE
Oval shaped case in stainless steel. Set with 429 diamonds and 12 sapphires on case and dial and back of case. Equipped with a quartz movement. Dome shaped sapphire crystal and water-resistant to 30 metres. Night blue coloured galuchat strap with folding clasp.

Roamer has reached maturity. The Soleure-based watch brand has arrived at this point by constantly refining its offer while stressing quality and elegance in its new products.
In the general timekeeping landscape in Switzerland, marked by a frantic move upmarket (as proof, the number of pieces produced each year has regularly declined while the average price has continuously increased), Roamer is one of the rare Swiss watch companies to work consistently and with determination in what we can call the ‘mid-range’. This is a category where international competition is fierce, a category invaded by the large global names (especially fashion brands) that have ‘cannibalized’ watchmaking.


Competence Lady
Round case in stainless steel. Set with 44 diamonds on top ring of case. Equipped with a quartz movement. See through case back, movement covered with Côtes de Genève decorated plate. Curved sapphire cystal and water-resistant to 30 metres. Black leather strap with folding clasp.

Competence Lady OVAL
Oval shaped case in stainless steel. Equipped with a quartz movement. See through case back , movement covered with Côtes de Genève decorated plate. Dome shaped sapphire cystal and water-resistant to 30 metres. Stainless steel bracelet with solid links with side push folding buckle.

The competence effect
Gradually, Roamer’s product offer has been refined, and from now on, it has found its true and best expression with the line that has become emblematic of the brand: Competence.
This name alone expresses the profound identity that Roamer wants for its products, and is justified by the brand’s history and patrimony in terms of watchmaking competence, qualitative competence, design competence, and service competence.
This particular model, inspired by a historic piece from the Roamer collection, has permitted a real turnaround, with a transformation in the perception of Roamer in the marketplace today.
In the beginning, the Competence timepiece, designed as a niche product, was above all destined to “make people speak of the brand,” to contribute to its positioning and its image. Although early on, what should have remained a relatively restricted piece in terms of sales has, in fact, become a central element in Roamer’s offer and image. The success of this watch has resulted in changes in how the brand is perceived, both with retailers and with the public. From now on, Roamer is concentrating its efforts on this model. Today it comprises an entire collection, and represents a substantial part of the brand’s turnover.
The design of the Competence has certainly come at a good time to a marketplace desirous of products that are both luxury and technical at the same time. But there is nothing ‘artificial’ about this in relation to the brand itself. An integral part of its history, and an important element of its heritage, the Competence has revealed the profound nature of Roamer and is allowing the company to reach its current ‘’maturity’.


Competence Lady ROYALE
Oval shaped case in stainless steel. Set with 429 diamonds and 12 rubis on case and dial and back of case. Equipped with a quartz movement. Dome shaped sapphire cystal and water-resistant to 30 metres. Red coloured galuchat strap with folding clasp.

Competence Lady OVAL
Oval shaped case in stainless steel. Set with 51 diamonds on top ring on case. Equipped with a quartz movement. Dome shaped sapphire cystal and water-resistant to 30 metres. Pink coloured leatther strap with folding clasp.

Enriching the collections
Gradually, new models have been added to the original rectangular watch, equipped with the brand’s mechanical movement and visible through the sapphire case back. Thus, the first round ladies’ Competence has been introduced, followed by the Grande Competence, a skeleton version, a square model, the tonneau timepiece and the Lady model.
Gradually, quartz calibres have been added to certain feminine models. But, status oblige, the back of the quartz movements have been covered by a plate finely decorated with the Côtes de Genève pattern.
This evolution has been accompanied by a progressive move upmarket, unseen in Roamer’s case up to today. To give only one example, the Competence Lady Ovale with diamonds sells for 1.900 – 2.100 Swiss francs whereas the Competence Lady Royale with 429 diamonds retails for 6.000 Swiss francs. This is a first at Roamer. But, while the average price has increased, that of the basic collection has not. The Competence, in fact, has drawn up the overall offer of Roamer and its current expansion.
If 2005 was the year of moving up in range for Roamer, representing its arrival into the ‘luxury’ category of watchmaking, the year 2006 will be ‘the year of women’, with an accent placed particularly on the new Competence feminine timepieces.


Boutique Chengdu Airport China, Shop in shop in Poland, Shop in shop in Thailand and Boutique Shenzen Airport

Market consolidation
Another consequence of this success is that Roamer is now well established in its markets, and enjoys a considerably elevated image. Yet the brand’s identity remains as it always has been - solidly anchored in the mid-range, and defined as affordable ‘luxury’ and ‘quality’.
With this well-acquired base, with its new authenticity, and with a defined face, Roamer now intends to plan its development in a consistent manner. While this development was based on the brand’s heritage in the beginning, it wants to turn towards the future with new forms, technological developments, and modernity.
Centring the offer around a flagship collection in 2005 has gone hand in hand with in-depth work in the brand’s key markets. The primary market is Asia, with a strong presence in China, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan, and Thailand. Outside of Asia, Roamer has strongly consolidated its presence in the Middle East (for example, it has just celebrated 60 years of cooperation with the same agent in Qatar), and has strengthened its position in Europe, especially in Scandinavia and the new opening in Italy. It is also moving rapidly into Eastern Europe and Russia.
Major investments on these main markets are planned for 2006, in terms of marketing, measures aimed at the retail community, and by the progressive opening of shop-in-shop sales points, as well as Roamer’s own boutiques. One example of this new offensive is the brand’s activity in China, where Roamer has 200 sales points, 15 shop-in-shop outlets, and a presence in 15 prestige stores in the Flamingo chain. Another example is the planned opening of ten shop-in-shop outlets in Poland in 2006, as well as in Hungary, and progressive inroads into Russia.

A new environment
This strategy is accompanied by a new set of promotional tools for retailers. A new product environment, new displays, new choice of refined materials, new colour codes, and new presentations are intended to reinforce the acquired ‘maturity’ and to strengthen the global idea of ‘competence’, professionalism, and quality.
A major element of this offensive is a whole new stand at BaselWorld, which will better express the values of quality, elegance and innovation that Roamer intends to promote.
Finally, the brand has created an entirely new website, www.roamer.ch,; designed as a service platform for communicating with prospective clients, as well as with retailers in a more personal and timely manner. With an access code, retailers can consult the entire list of models, learn about delivery times, and order merchandise online. The website will also have a press section where the media can have access to images and information.
More than ever, Roamer intends to make its slogan, ‘True Values’, more than just a concept, but a framework and a guide for all the brand’s activities.

Source: February - March 2006 Issue