TAG Heuer Interim CEO Jean-Claude Biver Confirms TAG’s New Pricing & Brand Strategies

TAG Heuer Interim CEO Jean-Claude Biver Confirms TAG’s New Pricing & Brand Strategies

TAG Heuer Interim CEO Jean-Claude Biver Confirms TAG's New Pricing & Brand Strategies ABTW Interviews

One of the world's most popular luxury watch brands is TAG Heuer, whose recent history has been a bit tumultuous. A few days ago, TAG Heuer CEO Stephane Linder stepped down after being in the role for only about a year. Linder had replaced long time TAG Heuer CEO Jean-Christophe Babin, who amicably left to move to another company in the LVMH group – as Bulgari's new CEO. News of Stephane Linder's departure was accompanied with the announcement that watch industry legend Jean-Claude Biver would take his place as the interim CEO of TAG Heuer.

TAG Heuer Interim CEO Jean-Claude Biver Confirms TAG's New Pricing & Brand Strategies ABTW Interviews

Jean-Claude Biver first gained fame working at Omega, and then the watch brand Blancpain – the latter company, he sold for a hefty sum to the Swatch Group. Jean-Claude Biver then purchased the ailing brand Hublot and brought it back from the brink of bankruptcy in the mid 2000s. A few years ago, Jean-Claude Biver sold Hublot to LVMH for over 300 million Euros. He remained the CEO of Hublot for a while before handing over the reigns to Ricardo Guadalupe. Jean-Claude Biver remained the Chairman of Hublot, and more recently acquired a new role heading the watch division of LVMH that more-or-less includes overseeing Hublot, Zenith, and TAG Heuer (though LVMH owns other companies that produce watches, according to Jean-Claude Biver, the group considers them to be more "jewelry," such as Bulgari).

TAG Heuer Interim CEO Jean-Claude Biver Confirms TAG's New Pricing & Brand Strategies ABTW Interviews
One of Tag Heuer's ventures into "haute horlogerie" territory: the Monaco V4 Tourbillon that uses belts in the movement

In October of 2014, TAG Heuer was reported to be laying off employees and potentially reorganizing. One major "cut" was the production of their also recently announced in-house made and designed Calibre CH80 Automatic Chronograph movement. Speaking personally with Jean-Claude Biver after the news, he explained more-or-less what was going on with TAG Heuer – it was time to get back to its roots. Over the last decade or so, TAG Heuer had attempted to climb from a brand selling $1,000 - $3,000 watches to a brand selling $3,000 - $5,000 watches, and later a brand also selling $5,000 - $8,000 watches.

More so, TAG Heuer has a division dedicated to producing "haute horlogerie" ultra-high-end watches, such as the Monaco V4 Tourbillon, and a host of exotic ultra precise chronographs. While cool, according to Jean-Claude Biver, TAG Heuer was losing its path, and suffering as a result. While dropping most of the ultra high-end manufacturing of the brand, TAG Heuer is known to be working on a smart watch that will be released sometime during 2016 – which will definitely be big news as TAG is the only major fine Swiss watch manufacturer that is known to be working on such a release (although there surely are others secretly also working on their solutions).

LVMH also needed an entry-level brand – something that TAG Heuer was historically very adept at filling. Rumors abounded that Jean-Claude Biver and Stephane Linder ran into some disputes over the changes at TAG Heuer. Linder was a sales leader for the company in the US before being asked to return to Switzerland to be CEO. Jean-Claude Biver was the man in charge. No doubt the changes at the company were difficult, but I agree with Mr. Biver that, while TAG Heuer produced some extremely cool stuff, it was losing what it was best at. There was also too much internal competition now between TAG Heuer and Zenith. Speaking of Zenith, Jean-Claude Biver has mentioned his intent for the company to focus once again on El Primero movement based sport watches.

TAG Heuer Interim CEO Jean-Claude Biver Confirms TAG's New Pricing & Brand Strategies ABTW Interviews
The beautiful – and short-lived – Carrera CH80, one of the casualties of TAG Heuer's recent repositioning

Stephane Linder's removal as CEO from TAG Heuer is, I believe, linked to the changes at the company. I further believe that Jean-Claude Biver is stepping in as interim CEO because there is no one else for the job right now, and because TAG Heuer needs the "Biver touch." Biver was more-or-less in charge of the company from a top level anyways, given his larger role at LVMH, so it makes sense for him to be in charge of the brand for a while – ideally, for him, a short while. For several years now, it has been known that Jean-Claude Biver has wanted to work less and some have even discussed his wishes to retire. He can certainly afford it, but Jean-Claude is a bit of a fellow workaholic and I understand his personal desire to "fix" TAG Heuer. Speaking to Jean-Claude again about TAG Heuer and his new role as interim CEO, he had the following interesting things to say:

Ariel Adams: You've just taken the role as interim CEO of TAG Heuer, based on your larger position heading strategy for watches at LVMH. Did you anticipate the former CEO Stephane Linder's departure? What do you intend on doing during your time as CEO?

Jean-Claude Biver: I have already contributed to reorganizing a few brands such as Blancpain, Omega, and lately, Hublot. Each time, I try first to learn, listen from the management before making any decisions. I also try always to help the management and to make any effort in order to maintain as much as possible the existing management. I have done exactly the same this time, and therefore, did not anticipate any departure of anybody. Now that I have taken the position as interim CEO, I will pursue the implementation of the new policy, which is to concentrate all our efforts on our strong and historical price segment, which is the segment between $1,500 to $5,000.

TAG Heuer Interim CEO Jean-Claude Biver Confirms TAG's New Pricing & Brand Strategies ABTW Interviews
The new TAG Heuer Formula 1 Calibre 6 Automatic in brushed steel is priced at $1,800 – considerably more affordable than the average price point recently seen from the brand

Ariel Adams: In the last year, you've helped TAG Heuer change their direction by refocusing the product strategy of the company, and helping them realign with their more traditional focus on appealing to a large customer base with more accessible prices. In searching for a new full-time CEO, what type of qualities should they have? What types of activities do you want them to focus on for the next few years at TAG Heuer?

Jean-Claude Biver: For the time being, I am now looking for a new CEO, and should we have one in a few months, I will want to promote somebody who is already a member of our actual management team at TAG Heuer.

Ariel Adams: There has been talk that LVMH, like other major luxury groups, are reorganizing their marketing and product development efforts in light of the slowdown in China, and the reality that brands need to focus more on a "world market" and, once again, on the West. How have these changes affected the internal culture at TAG Heuer? What role will TAG Heuer play in LVMH’s larger watch brand portfolio over the next few years?

Jean-Claude Biver: Contrary to other Swiss Watch brands, TAG Heuer has never been very much dependent on the Chinese market. That’s the reason why the Chinese slowdown has not had any important impact on our sales. TAG Heuer will be the leading watch brand at LVMH, the same as it has been since LVMH bought the company at the end of the 1990s.

TAG Heuer Interim CEO Jean-Claude Biver Confirms TAG's New Pricing & Brand Strategies ABTW Interviews
Jean-Claude Biver (left) with Ricardo Guadalupe, his replacement in the CEO position at Hublot

Ariel Adams: TAG Heuer has traditionally been considered an excellent entry-level and mid-tier luxury watch brand – with, of course, a heavy emphasis on a sporting lifestyle. What will you do in the coming months to further strengthen and reinforce this position for the brand?

Jean-Claude Biver: We will follow and pursue this politic and positioning of the brand. We will try to attract even more than before the young generation and young customers. Also, thanks not only to avant garde and attractive products, but also together with new ambassadors coming not only from the sports world, but also from lifestyle or the music world.

Ariel Adams: How long do you intend on being the interim CEO of TAG Heuer? What personal strategy will you use to focus on these new duties while still monitoring other LVMH brands such as Hublot and Zenith?

Jean-Claude Biver: I don’t know how long I am going to stay, but I am ready to stay for at least 18 months. I want to implement, first, our new positioning and new message with my team, and then, we will see. I have no problem to also monitor Hublot (which I know quite well) and Zenith (where I have one of my best friends as CEO). tagheuer.com

  • Where does JCB get those suits? Something of a cross between a Chairman Mao and a Sears $100 off the rack but buttoned way up. At least its distinctive (and I suppose he has them custom with that extra top button) and from the suit alone you know who it is.
    Back to the watch world, sounds just like everyone suspected. Linder no doubt did not want to back TAG down in the market and give up the high-tech image building pieces. And Biver, no surprise, wants to make sure his “Ford” brand has no models in his “Lincoln” price range. I can see the positions of both men, but I can also see why it was frictional. Perhaps if Linder had not been at TAG so long and had not seen it grow into what had become, he might have acquiesced. But imagine how hard it would be if the situation was reversed and Linder was head of LVMH Watch and he told Biver to make Hublot the entry brand. I know that would not happen, but think about how JCB would react to having his baby reduced in prestige. Just saying…

  • MisterDeal

    MarkCarson The scenario you posit in the last sentence is not an entirely apt comparison. As a less-than-four-decade-old brand (the equivalent of about 5 minutes of horological history), Hublot has neither the heritage Tag Heuer must balance/incorporate/reflect, nor its marketing challenge of (currently) having many different watch lines and models spanning affordable to high-end horology. Indeed, while Tag Heuer has proven confusing to both the casual consumer & watch enthusiast, Hublot has refined a very focused marketing approach, with a highly targeted demographic. 

    While some like to pile on Tag, the above is not actually intended as a criticism. Large heritage brands like Tag all face this to some degree: they don’t want to let down the loyal fans, they want to progress and make watches that both reflect and enhance the company’s history, and they want to move a lot product at a high margin, regardless of price point, as they have had numerous decades to refine their industrialization. On the other hand, Hublot & Panerai, say, know exactly who their customer is & directs all energy there, at a (high) price point with not as great a range between the entry-level and more haute models as, say, Tag’s. AP only sells 10s of thousands of watches a year; Tag, millions. It’s not that one is better or worse – they’re not playing the same ballgame, even if they have some watches that might share a price point.

    And also IMHO I think there’s a zeitgeist right now around more affordable watches offering the consumer a lot of consistency & quality, if not much in the way of mechanical innovation (some of the technical materials/metallurgy of the mid-tier models are actually quite interesting, however). In the case of Swatch Group and Seiko, for example, the quality of the low-to-mid-tier watches is astonishingly high; Tudor, too. In a way, I feel like this situation mirrors what’s happened with wine in the last 20 years. Right now, pretty much the cheapest wine at the supermarket is drinkable and in the real of “good”; at the supermarket, you can even get something resembling very good wine. Similarly, in the watch world, there’s a startling amount of value for the consumer in the low-to-mid tier – far more than ever before IMHO – and there are relatively few who are operating at the absolute top end. Biver senses correctly I think that to make the best “honest” watch right now is to own a healthy segment of the market that seems to keep growing, whether or not Chinese government gifting is at a lull or not… 
    And frankly, I have more nostalgia for a 1983 Tag quartz mall watch than I do a recent tourbillon! If I want a tourbillon, I’m going elsewhere where that is truly a part of the brand’s DNA as that ’83 quartz (or Heuer, or Monaco, or Carrera) is to Tag. (Editor’s Note: The fuck you will ever afford a high-end tourbillon, kid!) That said, I was in Bhindi Jewelers recently and saw all the Tags, and was pleasantly surprised at the high quality across the board. As well, my friend has a TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 8 Grande Date GMT that I just adore – underrated watch. If they are selling the TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 8 Grande Date GMT in a dept. store – I believe my pal got his at Nordstrom – then the dept. store is being elevated by its presence – a necessary antidote to the crap Diesel watches in the adjoining case.

  • 5803822

    LVMH
    I would have thought that BULGARI with its associated potential of the *Gerald Genta and *Daniel Roth brands represented the best bet to be the top of the pile in terms of its “high end” products for the Group- but they don’t seem to have made the most of the talent that existed ( perhaps till exists) at the Le Sentier location. 
    *Dumping both these well respected brand names also seems a bit incomprehensible, (still time to resurect them).

  • MisterDeal No argument. But my point was not to re-position Hublot. Only how JCB the man would feel about having his baby taken down a peg if the shoe was on the other foot. I only make this analogy because Linder has all of those years with TAG. I suspect Mr. Linder has plenty of “skin in the game” and is not thrilled about Biver’s group/corporate positioning decision, hence his departure. Cheers.

  • 5803822 I believe Mr. Babin (head of Bulgari) has said that they value the expertise they inherited by absorbing Genta and Roth companies, but that they had essentially no business (meaning sales), they there were dropping them as separate brands. I did later see that they used the Genta name on a Bulgari piece, so they are still using the names they own, but just not as separate brands anymore.

  • 5803822

    Mike Carson – Yes – I beleive they are only available as special orders from the catalogs kept in the the Bulgari boutiques at least I know  they were up until 2012 – in particular the “Bulgari” dog’s  breakfast version of the GG Gefica , designated the Bulgari Hunter – I believe the “Octo” is still going under the Bulgari name, which I reckon is a splendid looking piece.

  • MisterDeal

    MarkCarson MisterDeal It would indeed probably feel shitty!

  • nickyb66

    Not a fan of Tag watches. Had the Carerra RS which was not that accurate and the finish was not 100 percent. Also I don’t think the movement as in house then. Understand they have started to go in house, so will be interesting to see what they come up with. Now settled for a Rolex sub ceramic and it’s in a league of its own compared to Tag….plus the Rolex holds its value better than a Tag, which plummets as soon as you put it on your wrist.

  • 5803822

    For what it’s worth:-

    TAG listed as second only to Rolex in terms of “Swiss” production ( i.e 75% of the Rolex 1,000,000) – yr appx 2011 –
    The source idicates they managed this with only one tenth of the comparable Rolex workforce – which is obviously suspect, possibly  a zero droped from the figure of 500 ??—-(Rolex employees 6,000)  things may have changed since and Japanese coys production not known. – 
    PS -Citizen used to boast as having a higher production.than any other manf worldwide.

  • Ulysses31

    I read what he said about making TAG appeal more to the youth by using celebrities to promote the product, including more from the music industry.  I shook my head.  I wonder if in a few years’ time we’ll see TAGs made of plastic or with colourful coatings being promoted by people who only got famous for flashing their T&A (&P)?  Biver is a master of marketing with no regard for what happens to a brand in the process – if the product rakes in cash it doesn’t matter how crass and ugly it becomes.  It’s too early to tell what he’ll do with TAG but i’m not optimistic.  As for his suit; it looks shapeless and ugly.

  • JosephW

    You mean, TAGs made of plastic AGAIN. See the early ’80s Quartz Formula 1’s on eBay.
    I honestly don’t mind the new strategy. TAG didn’t have the chops, either in design or brand history, to really make it as a vendor of $8000 timepieces, in my opinion. They should focus on a reasonable value for money, using reliable movements, and getting people interested in the Swiss watch “hobby”, as it were. Let them differentiate themselves by design and sturdiness of the watch itself.

  • I’m a fan of Biver’s work, and so I’m interested to see what he does with TAG over the next 18 months or so. I’m sure we’ll be reading a lot about it.

  • Ulysses31

    JosephW I just checked them out.  They look like they should come out of a vending machine.

  • Heuer has changed owners a few times since its founder sold it. It’s time to drop the dreadful TAG from its name, methinks especially as the brand is repositioned in the market.

  • BIGCHRONO

    Mr. Biver seems to be sporting a trench, top, or lab coat, rather than a suit, or sports jacket. Irrelevance aside, it’s refreshing he is becoming Dr. Jekyll (Biver) to hopefully cure Heuer of its major ills. A good contrast to his Mr. Hyde personna with Hublot, offering those “Swamp Thing” entities @ assinine prices. I painfully bemoan his idea of ambassadors in all venues. It is meaningless what some over paid chumps wear, & (s)he is no better than a vagrant for owning expensive baubles. The masses should purchase by choice, not because of perceived notions that having products endorsed & (allegedly) owned by luminaries, ensure better lifestyles & making the world your oyster (Rolex?)

  • wstephens1

    I nailed that one. Tags are overpriced. I remember owning three at one time. Tried to sale the them . I found out real quick their value. Earth to Tag come back to earth your ignoring your core customers.

  • vmarks

    Taking TAG up-market to the 8000 price range was always going to be a difficult strategy.

    1. Who are TAG’s customers, and what do we know about them?
    2. What are the most successful products in TAG’s run? In Heuer’s run, pre-TAG?
    3. Ignoring the belt-driven works, what are the best of the products that match with who TAG wants as consumers going forward?

    I would argue that the line-up has to be:

    * Formula 1 (tasteful 90s iteration, after plastic, before bling WAC111A.LC2459)
    * Link (in its best iteration, squared off links, not the rounded atrocities WJ1111-0 )
    * Aquaracer (tasteful, diver WAF1110)
    * Carrera (re-create the 2447 SN)
    * Monaco

    That list is in order of price point from low to high. It doesn’t attempt to be all things to all people, but there are products at a broad range of price, and it honors the best pieces of TAG and Heuer in the process. I would be willing to eliminate Aquaracer as superfluous in that range, but it gives you Good, Better, Best, Chronograph, Monaco (which you can’t eliminate – it’s iconic.)

    Does TAG need CH80? No. It was an amazing idea, but it’s not why customers buy TAG. Interview people who wear TAG watches they’ve had for ages – I have.

    You’ll hear answers like, “It was my first good watch.” “I was working for an oil extraction company in Africa, and my watches kept breaking. I bought it in a duty free, and it was the only watch that’s held up and not broken in my line of work.” “My children bought it for me.” “My husband bought it for me.”

    TAG needs to be positioned so it can be the answer to the question: “What watch do you buy when you only know Rolex as a brand, and aren’t spending Rolex-money?”

    And, TAG needs to maintain a line of quartz movements. As much as watch people rubbish quartz, ask yourselves about maintenance, reliability, and what makes a watch a “good watch” for these types of customers?

  • mikeburdine

    I’m glad to see them focusing on the lower sub 5K market. I love cool watches but could never spend more than 1 or 2 percent of my household income on a watch. The only place I will ever see the high end stuff in here on ABTW.

  • shinytoys

    Dreaming of the days when the watch simply said “HEUER”…

  • shinytoys Yeah…but unfortunately, nowadays more people know them as “Tags”

  • Ulysses31 JosephW Very cool marketing gimmick!

  • MarkCarson Only special clientele can get those suits at the “Dr Evil World Domination Twisted Megalomaniac Suit Co.”
    I have an order in but have yet to be pre-approved…

  • vmarks I do miss the more rounded off, alternating polished/brushed links of the old, early ’90s S/el series, which morphed into a more boring version called “Link”.

  • PaulMiller1997

    Nice “get”!

  • dahcd

    WOW, have not seen so much commentary on a blog, though I agree with
    a lot of it. I’m curious to see Tag bring down their pricing and catch a niche
    market they may of not had. Though I would not buy a Tag, let’s see where
    this unfolds.

  • Thanatos42

    Seems like the industry honchos see the writing on the wall.  They have discovered the limits of how many people they can get to pay current prices for a mass-produced steel watch.  IIRC Tag has already done this once with the 6000 series.  I liked it, but it was gold Rolex money.  Very few takers.

  • spiceballs

    Chaz_Hen MarkCarson Dr Strangelove?

  • MisterDeal

    Why not do brand the more affordable line as “Tag Heuer” – and then separately do a more focused, concentrated line called simply “Heuer” that concentrates on somewhat higher-end editions of the perennials/classics (Monaco, Carrera, Autavia) and revitalizes some of the heritage models that never got their due (Daytona, Monza, Camaro) for modern tastes?

  • MisterDeal I like that idea. Sort of like Chopard does with their L.U.C. upper tier watches.

  • vmarks

    Chaz_Hen If you liked that 90’s S/El series, you should own one. I personally think it’s pretty awful, and doesn’t typify the best of TAG or Heuer. 

    I will agree, it was the first (or nearly first) TAG design effort after the Formula 1 and the Heuer-inherited Professional diver. But it, like the Kirium, are better left in the past. If you want one, find one and wear it proudly.

    I don’t know that they should re-issue everything – they need to simplify the product line. The Link may be boring to you, but to me, it’s the best iteration of TAG’s experiments with bracelets and lugs.

    TAG needs:

    * sub-500.
    * sub-1000.
    * a limited range of dial options (black, white, silver, markers, 3-6-9-12/date-6-9-12)
    *quartz, and a limited offering of automatic.
    * one chronograph
    * one monaco (with a few dials)

    It’s time to go back to a TAG that is pricier than SWATCH, but affordable, attainable.

    We don’t need Cailbre 16, 11, 1887, CH80,  We don’t need over 30 SKUs in the range. What we need is a simplified range with some affordable options that represent the best of TAG with some homage to the Heuer era in design. It has to be models that aren’t so polarizing that they won’t sell.

    The way I think of it, there need to be a maximum of 20 SKUs including men’s, women’s, and all dial combinations. Look at past sales and choose the styles that have sold the best.

    I’m not kidding when I say I’ve interviewed TAG owners, asking them why they wear one. It’s important to know this, and TAG ignores it at their peril. They should interview owners, not just ones in watch forums, but regular people who don’t have any special fascination with watches.

  • Jason Switzer

    Where is my friggen CH80?! I would have (and still would) pay good money for that watch. How TH shows that watch off, gets people more excited about the brand than they have been in years, and then kills the product before launch is beyond me. Total bonehead move.

  • MisterDeal

    MarkCarson MisterDeal Exactly! Via the new “Heuer” brand, ramp up the quality and the price on the models that people actually care and are passionate about. All-platinum Monaco? Sure! 
    Also selectively cherry-pick from the history those unsung models can be convinced anew to care about. Doing a higher-end new Heuer Daytona with a more contemporary case diameter, for example, would be the equivalent of Omega bringing out the contemporary Bullhead/Ploprof models. 
    And then once you’ve (a) established that the consumers understand the difference between the more expensive Heuer & the more affordable Tags and (b) actually had significant success with the Heuer concept, only THEN perhaps introduce brand-new, full contemporary Heuer models with newly created high-end in-house movements/novelties, etc. Only when there is a proven market for it should the Heuer marque introduce more haute options, and slowly, really developing a collector passion.

    As for the rest of watches under the Tag Heuer name, they should basically run the gamut from Tissot up to maybe Tudor/JeanRichard level at highest/most expensive, if that. But like the best mid-tier watches IMHO from Seiko/Swatch Group, they must outperform all other mid-tier models from other brands/conglomerates. The sheer quality of the mid-tier Seikos and Swatch Group brands is fantastic for the price (Hamilton Intra-Matic comes to mind… Mido is much nicer than price might indicate, etc.)

    As well, I think this incarnation should make a real distinction between tool-based watches and the rest of the collection. Seiko has really shown the way here. Seiko’s mid-tier divers are in a class by themselves – uniquely, they almost serve as a “halo” for the upper-tier: you figure “If the affordable Seiko divers are that good, the expensive ones must be godlike manna from heaven!” Basically, within this iteration of the entire Tag Heuer/Heuer branding, there should be a focus on the tool watches being the toughest and most hardcore utility-driven at whatever price point they come in – i.e., there’s a sort of mini-Sinn/Ball type emphasis among the tool watches. Then enthusiasts for each kind of tool watch will become evangelists, their endorsement reflecting on the overall quality perception of the brand.

  • aleximd2000

    I like this guy very much Biver
    He proved that as in matrix he is reading the code of the industry 
    I agree as many of you guys that Tag must focuse on this segment because it was always there.
    The so much recognizable Link bracelet is considered from my opinion the hallmark of young active sport guys and girls of course
    The direction in my belief is a low quartz segment with strong and good quality calibers , the middle segment of 1000/5000 eu with very good mechanical ones including in house movt. and over the top for watch freaks.
    Cheers

  • SeanPiper

    Regarding smart watches, you must have the missed the scoop on Frederique Constant?
    http://blog.avstev.com.au/around-the-web-frederique-constant-hints-at-a-potential-smart-watch/

  • Jedi74

    Lickspittle. Shame on you, A.A.

  • thewatchgeek

    VodaBlatoKri thanks. Seems like a complete change of direction for TAG Heuer and not one I’m keen on!

  • CG

    TH future is now very grim, I see all racing associations going away under Biver or curtailed significantly. Basketball and Soccer teams and players will be they’re new top of line with commemoratives for U2 and Kanye West sold on late-night MTV infomercials. With a few of those Hublot/Invicta monstrosities thrown in for good measure, but if his implied predictions about the market for TH is true we will see nothing of any future value.

  • VodaBlatoKri

    thewatchgeek My 1st reaction too.But Heuer was never a haute horlogerie brand.They made sturdy respectble well designed no-nonsense pieces

  • If I were focusing on younger buyers, I’d be pouring a huge amount of energy into smartwatches (yes, plural).  I’m not even sure if 2016 is soon enough.  The company’s core demographic (“entry” luxury watch buyers) is just concerned enough about functionality and cost that it may be tempted away by higher-end smartwatches like the Apple Watch and future Android Wear devices.  You underestimate the allure of technology at your peril!

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  • Aevum

    so…
    The last CEO of Tag Heuer was trying to make it a better company and LVHM kicked him out becuase they were happy with cheap nasty SW200 based Aquaracers and Plastic formula ones for people who are buying a brand, not a watch. 

    LVMH is killing Tag Heuer the same way they killed Zenith.

  • Aevum

    CG Its the hublot/Monster beats Formula… We dont need to make a decent watch, we just have to pay Atheletes and famous people to wear then…

  • Aevum So you don’t think that in 1865 George Favre-Jacot said to himself, “Hmm I want to start a watch company, but I need to be at a price point above that company started by Edouard Heuer 5 years ago. And I hope that he respects my market segment and keep his innovations and prices in line to protect my market position. I’m sure the path to each of our success will be to not compete with each other.”
    Seriously though, Zenith was in worse shape when Thierry Nadaf than it is today.

  • Jef_in

    As an aspirational brand, at least for us, the direction that TAG was taking of having higher price point watches lifted the older Seiko engine TAG as well as those sellita one’s.  Is that a bad thing?  For a consumer wearing an older model TAG at this day and age is like being upgraded to business class from economy.  This is not a bad thing.
    But then again,  providing focus, and working on the price points will allow for a better strategy and better execution of that strategy.  If LVMH would want Zenith to be the higher priced brand, it does not really offer an aspiration to the demographics that TAG has, so it would have a different target market.  which in a way can work for LVMH. 
    The price range given is still relatively wide, it just means the V4 engine that TAG was working on would not be inside TAG, unless for special edition pieces.

  • egznyc

    MisterDeal Yes, I think this makes a lot of sense.

  • thebalancecock

    Think about the difference between what LVMH and Tag will put out in the sub 5k sector, and say what NOMOS puts out.
    They will be written off and decried as junk.  Honestly they should shift the message to high quality low money not just “the lowest price pieces in our portfolio.”

  • Meathanky

    Why not focus on the kinds of pieces that Heuer is so popular for now – vintage style racing watches. Stick with basic stock movements and focus on styling (like the CH80).. Sell that watch for $3000 and I think you’d have a lot of takers.

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  • somethingnottaken

    spiceballs Chaz_Hen MarkCarson Or the far more terrifying Dr. Strangeglove.

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