When Morten Linde and Jorg Werdelin got together to form their watch company, the underlying concept was a standard watch that could be transformed into an instrument for climbing, diving and more by the addition of a module on top.
That concept still holds, but Linde Werdelin is finding that people are buying the watch for the watch, and these are a separate group of customers from the ones buying the instrument.
“Many people just buy a watch alone, which is fine with us,” says Linde. “We know that customers’ needs are very personal.”
“Our customers are between 30 and 50, and they are often watch lovers,” adds Werdelin. “Some people want to have the different instruments, but it’s more about the watch than the two together. It’s the idea and the instrument is the icing on the cake, but it’s not something people wear every day.” Losing weight
The two watches being highlighted at BaselWorld, the SpidoLite II and the SpidoSpeed, the company’s first chronograph, were created to meet a specific customer need.
“The inspiration was because of a group going to Mount Everest, which split in two, one that wanted to climb with exactly the same equipment as the original climbers, and the second that used as technically advanced products as possible,” recalls Linde. “They asked us for a light watch and so we developed one. I looked at sports cars which go onto the racetrack, and for this purpose, they take away as much as possible without impacting the strength of construction, which is what we did with the watches. This gives us the architecture of both watches. We reduced the weight by 40 per cent. The solution lies in the problem – we needed a light watch and the result was a unique and iconic product.”
The skeletonisation is quite complicated and the dial uses a two-layer construction. “We played with the finishing of the surfaces, with Geneva stripes on the SpidoLite II and circular graining on the SpidoSpeed, then another skeletonised dial on top,” details Linde. “We do sports watches and sports instruments, so when you look at the SpidoLite II and the SpidoSpeed, they are for all sports above sea level. Then, it is about fighting gravity and reducing weight. If it’s skiing, you want to have light equipment. If it’s climbing, it’s the same. As soon as you go underwater, gravity is not a problem anymore. The design of our watch changes completely for underwater use—it has to be robust, it’s a bigger case, the dive computer is much bigger and easier to read. It’s really about looking at where the watch is going to be used and designing it for this environment.”
Selling Linde Werdelin
Business is good for the brand, as the watches are sold in normal watch retailers, as well as sports shops, mountain climbing stores, dive shops, ski retailers and more. “We would obviously like to work with more specialty watch retailers in more markets,” Werdelin says. “With the retailers we have, we are very successful. In Singapore, we are selling well and things are going well in the US. I am happy that the retailers we have are selling through. We have to work with each of our partners, to educate the customer and our retail partners. They need to be able to explain the concept and they need to convince customers that what we do is unique and we have a good story to tell. People really like to connect with us and meet with us and understand why we do what we do. We are going in the right direction, because we are growing.”
Source: Europa Star April - May 2012 Magazine Issue