The sun rises in the east and sets in the west. The same might also be said of the watch industry. In this issue, we explore the trends and developments in the Far East among other insights on the industry, including the newest watch products. Check out the new issues of Europa Star Global and Première.
Europa Star Time.Business
Serge Maillard kicks things off with an editorial on the “Fat East.” No, that’s not a typo, and it might be a bit controversial. But the growing hunger for timepieces (including other goods) in China by its growing middle class will continue to drive growth in the watch industry. After all, a 4 billion Swiss franc market for Swiss watches (compared to 1.5 billion in 2000) can’t be wrong.
Europa Star spent a month on the ground in China and Japan to explore this trend and many others in this issue. Mainland China, for example, exported more than 652 million wristwatches in 2016. We explore who are the real giants of the Chinese watchmaking industry.
Then we go across the East China Sea to Japan, where we take a look at the country’s three watchmaking giants: Seiko, Casio and Citizen. Each has played a role in revolutionizing the industry in its own way, and each is generally known for its affordable yet durable watches. But now, these brands are looking to augment their premium lines.
The Far (or “Fat”) East will also have implications for the environment. With millennials as a target consumer demographic and with many watch brands focusing on sustainable product development, is there real change on the way?
To round things off, in the segment “A Last Word to Start” Pierre Maillard looks into the topic of watches and fetishism, and more specifically at the skyrocketing prices of recent watch auctions (think Paul Newman’s Paul Newman Rolex Daytona), and what actually gives a watch its value.
Europa Star Time.Keeper
Who are the main competitors of major watch brands? Surprise, surprise – it turns out that their main competitors may in fact be themselves. We look into the marriage of a new industry (technology) and old one (mechanical watchmaking) and the growing market for luxury second-hand watches that are largely outside the control of brands themselves.
We then anticipate a milestone of a watch model that has revolutionized the industry, the G-SHOCK, which celebrates its 35th anniversary in 2018. The MR-G and G-Steel lines, however, indicate that Casio is another brand that is looking to upscale its proposition.
A special series also looks into iconic chronograph watches. Contributions include the first automatic chronograph to be marketed, the Seiko 5 Speed Timer, among other special models.
And while we’re on the topic of Seiko, and with the 2018 winter Olympics fast approaching, we revisit the history of timekeeping in sports. It was the 1964 Olympic Games in Tokyo where Seiko changed the nature of sporting competition forever, and also made a name for itself on the international arena.
And don’t forget to check out the new issue of Europa Star Première, the leading French language watchmaking publication.