TAG Heuer is slightly troubled of late. Earlier this year, the company debuted its new CH80 in-house chronograph movement at Basel, but just months later, they decided to not only shelf production of the movement, but also to let some 46 employees go. TAG Heuer’s new Chevenez facility, which was built in anticipation of the CH80 movement, would also be repurposed to produce other movements. Furthermore, just recently, its CEO Stephane Linder resigned leaving the legendary Jean-Claude Biver, who is head of watches at LVMH, to assume the position of interim CEO. We spoke to Biver to understand what is happening and his plans for Tag Heuer in the future.
As for merrier news, yes, it is that time of the year again – the holiday season is less than a week away! If you are still struggling about what to buy either for yourself or for your watch-loving friends, this month’s roundup contains reviews and hands-on of some of the hottest watches right now, including the new blue and black Rolex GMT-Master II 116710BLNR and Arnold & Son’s DTE Double Tourbillon Escapement Watch. If you are looking for something affordable, we also have Orient’s affordable aviation-inspired Flight watch.
1. Arnold & Son DTE Double Tourbillon Escapement Watch Hands-On
I wrote before that I am a fan of Arnold & Son because, despite being relatively new to the haute horology scene, Arnold & Son has successfully established a signature look and a reputation for creating highly technical pieces – such as the Time Pyramid and the Dial Side True Beat. To celebrate the 250th anniversary of its namesake – the English watchmaker John Arnold – they have created the Double Tourbillon Escapement watch, a watch that features not one but two exposed tourbillons on the dial with two independent time indications.
2. TAG Heuer Interim CEO Jean-Claude Biver Confirms TAG’s New Pricing & Brand Strategies
Some of the biggest news over the past two weeks was that of Stephane Linder’s resignation as the CEO of Tag Heuer. It came as a bit of a shock, but not entirely surprisingly considering some of the problems that Tag Heuer has been facing, especially with regard to its new CH80 movement. In any case, Jean-Claude Biver has just confirmed that he will be taking on the role as its interim CEO and we had a quick chat with him to find out his plans for the brand.
3. Rolex GMT-Master II 116710BLNR Watch Review
The modern version of the Rolex GMT-Master II was introduced almost 9 years ago, and Rolex updated it last year by releasing a new stainless steel version with a blue and black ceramic bezel. This watch is significant because it is the first watch to have a bi-color ceramic bezel and it is also the first time Rolex used the color blue and black on a GMT-Master. Find out if this watch is worth its $600 premium over the regular black version in our review.
4. What Happened At The First Apple Watch WatchKit OS Hackathon
One of the most eagerly anticipated watches right now is the Apple Watch. Although Apple has yet to give a fixed launch date, reports and rumors indicate that it should be available for retail around Spring. Recently, Apple released the WatchKit, a software development kit for developers and programmers to begin creating apps for the watch. To mark the occasion, a special hackathon event was held, where programmers, project managers, and graphic designers came together to collaborate on new apps for the Apple Watch. And we were there report on what went on and what it was like.
5. Orient Flight Watch Review
Let it not be said that we only cover pieces that are inaccessible and unaffordable. Here is one super affordable mechanical piece from Japanese manufacturer Orient. Orient is a subsidiary of Seiko and thus it can be said that their movements are genuine “in-house” made. But more than that, the Flight watch is their take on the classic flieger or pilot watch. Sure, the dial is a bit busy and decision to include the date is questionable, but underneath is a super reliable Japanese-made mechanical movement – and then, there is the price.
6. Is Luxury Watch Marketing Failing?
Marketing is an extremely tricky subject and undertaking, as it requires an understanding of the human psyche, and as we all know, people can be unpredictable. Marketing is also something that many watch brands partake in heavily. Just flip through a magazine or a newspaper, and chances are there’s a watch advertisement in there somewhere. Obviously, one of the aims of marketing is to reach a wider audience, but in doing so, brands might sometimes antagonize existing customers and fans – I’m sure some of you have experienced these feelings before. So, is there a better way to do things? What are some of the marketing tactics employed by brands now? This article provides a general overview of watch marketing and how it can be improved.