Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Watch it!

A watch cannot claim to be 'Swiss-Made' unless at least 50% of its components - by value - are manufactured in Switzerland.

In India, the time products division of the Tata Group manufacturers under three brands - Titan, FastTrack and Xylys. The last one, Xylys, comes with a 'Swiss-Made' tag. Will it lose this tag if the Swiss raise the threshold to 60%?

This, along with many other interesting questions, pop up from an article in the the latest Economist. The article comes up with many hey-I-didn't-know-this facts. Consider these -

  • The Swiss dominate the watch business and one company dominates this business in Switzerland - Swatch. The company has an annual turnover of SFr 7.3 billion (Rs. 4,216 Cr)
  • The Swatch group owns more than a dozen brands which carpet-bomb the entire watch market, leaving the mass market to Chinese companies and their $2 watches. 
  • Swatch companies - Breguet, Blancpain, Glashütte Original, Jaquet Droz, Léon Hatot, Omega, Tiffany & Co., Longines, Rado, Union Glashütte, Tissot, ck watch & jewelry, Balmain, Certina, Mido, Hamilton, Swatch, Flik Flak, Endura and Tourbillon.
  • Switzerland is also the world's biggest supplier of watch components:
    • ETA - 70% of movements (core mechanisms)
    • Nivarox-FAR - 90% of balance springs
  • Swatch is also an unwilling supplier of components to its competitors (Patek Philippe, Robert Loomes)!



Swiss Makers - Time is Money (Economist, 16Feb13) - http://www.economist.com/news/business/21571943-industry-ripe-shake-up-time-money?fsrc=scn/tw/te/tr/timeismoney

Swatch Group - http://www.swatchgroup.com/en/brands_and_companies

Tata Time Products Division - http://www.titan.co.in/business-divisions/time-products-division/xylys

Shagil Precision - India's Biggest Watch Component Maker (Times of India, 4May2004) - http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2004-05-04/bangalore/28327131_1_machines-component-maker-facility

No comments: