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Our Vision - BaselWorld 2018

BaselWorld 2018 Report



Baselworld is still the only place where the watch industry converges each year. It is a great forum for networking as it offers manifold opportunities to meet and interact with customers, agents, watch brands and media from all over the world. While our focus remains to be watches, the fair is also a hub for the jewellery and gemstone industry.

Even though the fair was cut short by two days, a Baselworld report says that the number of professional visitors to the fair for the first two days was 8% more than last year. “80% of Swiss watch exports are represented at this year’s Baselworld. This makes Baselworld the preeminent specialized trade show for the watch industry. We are delighted by its successful start. The upswing has begun” said Baselworld’s Managing Director Sylvie Ritter, outlining the upbeat mood at the outset. As always, the fair started with a Press conference. The theme of the press conference was “sustainability” and over 300 international journalists attended the same.


For us, the key highlight of the fair is to do with the breath-taking watches that we encounter. It has been many years now, but the creativity of the watchmakers never ceases to surprise and delight. One of the crucial outcomes of the fair is that we can witness first-hand the creation of trends that will dominate the industry.

For starters, we did notice a lot of colour around the fair. It seems that people are choosing to wear bolder and colourful watches much more than before! So enamoured and smitten we were by these hues around us, that we have actually organized many of our watch picks for this issue as per a colour theme! However, we did notice more green watches than before. Is green the new black? Seems so…..though other colours also continued to dominate the palette.

Many brands also looked to their past and resurrected vintage watches. While this is not a new trend, since watch brands, especially those with a rich history, always look to the past for inspiration, we felt that more and more brands are now looking back at timeless pieces and reinterpreting them with modern materials and technology, while the look veers more towards the design codes of the past. There were brands celebrating key milestones and this could have added to this trend.

In terms of complications, while we saw a range of complications across different watches, the category of GMT watches seemed to be more popular this year. In the history of the world, and of any industry, technology is always a game changer. In case of the watch industry, technology has impacted the way watches are made and even the way they are sold. Smartwatches have penetrated the market and created a category for themselves. Brands are now communicating with the end user on social media channels, like never before. It was very interesting to observe these massive changes as a part of the growth of the industry. The talk on smartwatches has not really died down. Well, perhaps it never will! Watchmakers once again demonstrated their attempts to incorporate smartwatch
technology into watches, thereby creating a kind of mélange of the two worlds. Fair enough…watches do have to move with the times!

The complete feature is in Hours & Minutes on pg. no. 3 in the BaselWorld 2018 - A Special Report.