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Casio Announces Exit From Baselworld 2020

Casio Announces Exit From Baselworld 2020 Watch Industry News

Photo Credit: Casio

Baselworld, once the undisputed center of the watch industry calendar, has been troubled in recent years as brands have begun to abandon the traditional set piece event for exclusive company events and more varied release schedules. The latest brand to announce its departure from the show is Japanese giant Casio, which declared its intention to pull out of Baselworld 2020 early Wednesday.

Casio is the second major Japanese brand to depart from the show in recent weeks, following Seiko’s announcement during the first week of November that neither Seiko nor Grand Seiko will exhibit at Basel in 2020, citing scheduling concerns. Like Seiko as well as Swiss manufacturer Breitling, Casio has pointed to the relatively late date of the 2020 Basel show (currently scheduled from April 30 to May 5) conflicting with its own release schedule as the reason for its decision.

This is the latest signal of a potential sea change in the industry trade show calendar, as the massive Swatch Group will host its own 2020 collection launch in March while luxury conglomerate LVMH has announced plans for each of its watch brands to debut a 2020 centerpiece at an event in Dubai in January. Casio themselves, along with countryman Seiko, will be displaying at the Inhorgenta show in Munich from February 14 to February 17. Despite these withdrawals and changes, Baselworld remains the largest and most traditionally important event on the calendar, and Casio has not yet made clear if it would return for future years if scheduling needs are met.

This announcement leaves CITIZEN Watch Group, which reconfirmed its commitment to the show in November, as the only major Japanese manufacturer to maintain a presence at Baselworld 2020. While this is a troubling development for the 2020 show, there is a high potential for recovery in 2021 and beyond if scheduling is changed.

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  • SuperStrapper

    2 huge blows in a row. The show is in dire straits.

    • Berndt Norten

      Or.,. It could make for a good time!

      • Independent_George

        Dire Straits indeed:

        Here is Casio in this mean Swiss town
        And it’s so away from home
        The calendar don’t work with the holidays around
        And it’s so far away from home.

        • Berndt Norten

          -mond’s so far away from me
          He’s so far, in Scotland you see
          He’s so far away from me…
          or is he really living in New Jersey?

          • DanW94

            Here comes Asia with the power and the glory
            Hand the Swiss their walking shoes
            Here come Casio with the plastic G-Shock
            Price gouging, the Swiss will lose
            Chinese tourbillon, it got the action
            Oh yeah, it’s here to stay
            Intellectual property pilfering
            They’re turning Baselworld into a sad cafe….

          • Berndt Norten

            And after all the Nippon-phobia and double talk
            There’s just Dan’s song in all the trouble and the strife
            Casio does the walk, yeah, they do the walk of life
            Walk on by Baselworld, alright

          • Berndt Norten

            How can this have only two upvotes? It’s brilliant. Come on, guys!

    • Garrett Hu

      They really did it to themselves. Classical Swiss watch industry mentality. Old and never change leads to the the demise. Things like over production and forcing inventory to dealers doesn’t work. A first year business school student can tell you there will be problems. I am beginning To think the folks that make these decisions may not be the sharpest knife but they have their heads in the sand.

  • Independent_George

    For those who might be thinking “Oh, it’s just Casio, so what,” Casio sells millions of watch a year. When a trade show loses two OEMs that each produces millions of watches annually, that is a significant blow.

    • Aiden Zahre

      i love casio. i know some people who only collect g-shocks. its a culture. one guy has over 300 and still going. Im looking to get my frist full metal from japan soon in blue metal.

    • Garrett Hu

      Basel is like newspapers, it’s going away and there is nothing they can innovate to change course. Even if they get everyone on board to not engage in surge pricing and things become way cheaper it’s just going to buy time.

      It’s going away, they know it. What’s going to happen is it will turn into MacWorld shows where it’s become a collection of small vendors that are selling merchandise right there on site. I imagine it will become a hall full of micro brands and basically a market.

      But then again they don’t have to do to Basel, they can do that just like the Worn and Wound pop up events

  • NaJo

    Rip basel! Also it makes sense since i dont think anybody goes to basel for a casio !

    • Garrett Hu

      Casio is huge and the Japanese are smart. I think they do it because everyone else seems to, and when it became okay to leave they picked the most logical excuse. Because it never made sense and they never could recover from the investment so as a marketing activity this is a negative ROI. They date change from Basel was the one excuse they have been waiting for many years and they finally got it. I think the new Chief at Basel is going to have a pretty short tenure

    • BaselWorld is a trade show – not a retail event. Dealer/ADs go there to place annual orders.

      • NaJo

        Yrah i know that haha. Also its marketing n showcase innovations new models etc. I never heard of any casio in any of basel reports and its not practical for casio to spend millions on it with limelight moatly gling to rolex n others

  • Raymond Wilkie

    Why suddenly with such a long estabished event is scheduling an issue.

    • Independent_George

      Japanese Holidays.
      Too late in the year for a preferred launch schedule.
      Swatch showed it is no longer necessary.

      • Raymond Wilkie

        The last one.

    • I’ll tell you another “Swiss prejudice against their Asian rivals” reason Mr.Raymond. It has nothing to do with rescheduling gabbage.A couple of Malaysian regional GMs who attended Baselworld 2019 thought the Swiss 0rganizers were a bunch of Rascists as they were very unfair towards their Japanese Watchmaker counterparts.Apparently Citizen, Casio and Seiko were “RELEGATED AND DOWNGRADED” to the 2nd FLOOR of the Exhibition building !!! Yes Sir.They were pushed upstairs !!! Not Ground Floor or 1st floor but 2nd floor.These Japanese watchmaker cultural icon brands are significantly very serious players, financially and historically than many of the stupid European brands on the ground floor. Many Asian observers at Baselworld 2019 were disgusted with the outdated rascist mindset of the 0rganizers blatantly practising discrimination and treating Citizen, Casio and Seiko as 2ND CLASS CITIZENS!!! (no pun intended)

      • Raymond Wilkie

        You’re pun is pardoned Miss Fox and if what you say is true, which i have every reason to be the case ( sounds just like the swiss) then my distain for the whole orginisation would be just the same. Household names like Casio, Citizen and Sieko belittle themself anyway taking part in some eletist nonsense that few can afford to attend. They will do just fine without them.

      • Not to disagree, but recall that long ago the fair started as a way to showcase SWISS watches. So, yeah they no doubt have some lingering preference towards Swiss brands. I’m not here to justify this, only an observer…

      • Tempvs Mortvvs

        Well, their comeuppance has come and is still ongoing. “Pride comes before the fall.” They still don’t learn despite their management changes. And they can’t learn. They are doing this to themselves.

    • I seem to recall that BaselWorld 2020 is being run later to it will have an adjacent time period to SIHH (which used to be run in Feb as I recall). But if the BW organizers really want to listen to brands, they should move the date up to where the brands prefer – maybe even to Feb (rather than the traditional late March period) and then hope they can get Richemont to move SIHH to be just before or after BW.

  • Another painful TKO for Baselworld.I’m rooting for Dubai Watch Week to become the biggest open watch summit in the world and the number 1 market for traditional watchmakers and microbrands to showcase their new timepieces.

  • Garrett Hu

    It’s no secret trade shows are becoming a things of the past. I feel this is true in a few industries. It costs millions, it’s kind of a all hand on deck event where employees all come home tired and sick. You can always guarantee sore feet, sleep deprivation, the most unhealthy and disgusting foods, overbooked hotels at $1000 a night and non existent service. Not to mention the folks that setup these booths need to deal with the union guys where you take a bunch of bullshit. Then you pay 6x the price for everything. Historically people place orders at these shows, this is no longer the case but dealers go because they get treated like Royalty. I went to a G Shock event where Ibe showed up and I have to say that AD must have sold at least 50 watches that night, heck I bought 6 and have Ibe sign 2 of them. So if G Shock diverts that money to localized events I reckon they will sell much more. And Individual collectors that are historically ignored can feel like they have been treated well. After all, it is us the little guys that pay the bills.

  • Mikita

    Now you come to me and you say ‘Don Casione, give me justice’, but you don’t even ask with respect. You don’t offer friendship. You don’t even think to call me Big Player.

    • Joe

      “I always thought [the traitor] would be Clemenza Citizen, not Tessio Casio.”

  • PR

    Like anyone cares :/

    Besides, claiming conflict of release schedule is the nicest way to say we don’t really need you anymore. Basel is dead, long live random limited editions through the year!

  • Mark B

    You can do a lot of separate events around the world for what it costs to put on one exhibit an Basel. Just say’n

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