Monday, March 23, 2020

What Comes Next

So, unlike some of my colleagues out there posting about what watch they are wearing during their personal Covid-19 Lockdowns, I thought I would not bore you with what I am up to.  I thought it might be a time to think about what comes next for the watch business.

Downsizing -
Unfortunately, this was already happening even prior to Covid 19.  People have already lost their jobs, and unlike the Quartz Crisis, this is global, not just unique to the watch industry.  There will always be wealthy people out there who will sail through.  And it's safe to say that the likes of Patek, AP and Rolex should make safe harbor.  And in fairness, there is no shame in having enough in the bank to see you through.

And globally, a lot of lives are in the process of being turned upside down.  I suspect we all share the hope and wish that we are on the other side of this soon, and hopefully most will be able to recover.

Some manufacturers (suppliers such as crowns, cases, rotors) are already in all-too-advanced conversations with lawyers specializing in bankruptcy reorganizations.  And these shutdowns will ripple out to France and to Italy as many of these companies have staff that commute back and forth across the borders every day.

With the brands, we will see some shutter, some may be acquired, some may follow JEANRICHARD and Eterna to the land of Sleeping Beauty.  And unfortunately, some will not recover.

Rumors had already been rife, but if the word around the campfire is to be believed, brands are in deep discussion.  Retail giants are suddenly getting rather chummy.  More mergers could be afoot.

But this goes even beyond the obvious - enter the media.  What happens when advertising money dries up?  And suddenly the music stops and there aren't enough chairs?  There have been some flirtations with some fairly heavy hitters.  Where that will actually lead remains to be seen, but there will, likely, be fewer outlets when everything is said and done.

No comments:

Post a Comment