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WMR - March 2018


WMR - March 2018

Dear friends,

The year begun on a positive note with a great fair- the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie, 2018. We were in the middle of all the action at the SIHH which took place at Palexpo, Geneva from 15th-19th January 2018. Now, our team is all set to go to the Baselworld Fair, the biggest watch fair in the world! As a media partner at the Baselworld Fair, we have seen and admired the influx of beautiful horological creations presented here over the years. This year as well, we are excited to be at the Baselworld in order to get for you the best timepieces. With all the pre-Basel collections that are trickling in, we are sure that the releases at the fair will also be mesmerising creations. We look forward to observing and identifying key trends that will set the course for the year to come. In this issue we present to you curated pieces from the SIHH 2018, as well as key Pre-Basel picks. We also converse with Paolo Marai, President & CEO of Timex Group Swiss Luxury Division and Georges-Henri Meylan, President, MELB Holding.

In the midst of all the excitement to do with the fairs, there was a bit of a damper for the Indian watch industry when the Union Budget was presented. It is a key development that impacts us and it has to do with recent changes in duty structure. Customs duty has doubled to 20% on imported watches and clocks. The increase in duty also affects smartwatches and wearables as well as watch movements. This comes as a disappointment, especially after the GST revision from 28% to 18%, which had made India one of the most competitive markets for watches! This is definitely something that would impact us, just when the watch market seemed to be on a growth trajectory once more!

One of the concerning matters that we will be looking at more detail in our forthcoming issues has to do with the problem of fake watches or ‘copies’ sold online. E-commerce comes with many benefits. However, when unscrupulous sellers put up fake watches for sale online at heavily discounted prices, it influences fair trade. Where do things stand in India as far as this issue is concerned? We will explore that in a future issue, as this is something I feel that the watch market should take seriously.

This issue is packed with events and informative news from the watch world. Happy reading!

SK Sign

Sunil Karer