A LOT of women are wearing men’s watches. This is an observation by Laurent Lecamp, the executive vice president of sales for Swiss watchmaking giant Carl F Bucherer. In business since 1888, the brand is known for manufacturing mechanical watches featuring collections such as Patravi (which includes the TravelTec line for frequent flyers and ScubaTec for divers). The exclusive lines for women — Pathos and Alacria — come with exquisite elements of jewellery and in tune with the trend, Carl F Bucherer has also introduced bigger watches for women, with a maximum diameter of 40 mm.
What attracts Lecamp about the Swiss label, which he joined last year, is its eye for detail, thirst for cutting-edge innovation and a history that spans more than 125 years. “Luxury is not about price. It’s an emotion, which you share with someone. And emotion is the key part of the brand development of a luxury product,” he says. A few years ago, the company made a breakthrough in the watch world by launching the CFB A1000 Caliber. It is a hand-windable automatic movement, done to rare perfection, with rotors arranged on the periphery. Innovation such as this has kept its aficionados looking out for more. Lecamp insists during our conversation, that true fans are more interested in and mystified by the inner workings of a watch. Highlighting the brand’s USP, Lecamp says with a lot of pride that every timepiece is crafted in Switzerland from start-to-finish, “100 per cent”.
Is it difficult to push a luxury watch brand in the Indian market, we wonder. “You can make very good business in Bengaluru or Mumbai. Switzerland has eight million people, and by that calculation, there are many Switzerlands in India. You can do good business in India by focussing on just one city!” he says, adding that their TraveTec and ScubaTec watches are the most popular in the country.
Lecamp looks out for what people sport on their wrists during flights. “Watches give access to one’s personality. If you wear a small watch with a round design, I think you will be somebody who is more classy in everyday life. If you were to wear something big, in gold or diamond, that means you are showing off. And, that’s okay,” he smiles.
Pulling back his sleeves to show us his Patravi ScubaTec diver’s timepiece, Lecamp admits that he likes products with stories. “Like the back of this watch with two manta rays engraved on it (Carl F Bucherer supports Manta Trust, a non-profit organisation that works towards protecting the manta ray). Worldwide, we have two manta rays with GPS on their backs to understand what depth they can swim to. Also, the blue colour on the surface and the dial is not only the colour of the ocean, but also the colour of the flag of Lucerne, where the brand was created. So there are two stories on one watch,” he concludes.
Carl F Bucherer watches
are priced from approximately
`1 lakh upwards. At
Ethos Watch Boutiques, Bengaluru. Details: 40999621