Watch brand IWC opens new factory, expands e-commerce
today Aug 29, 2018
“We are very optimistic, you can see that in Swiss watch export figures,” Christoph Grainger-Herr told Reuters in an interview on the sidelines of the opening ceremony on Monday.
“Asia Pacific has recovered and the U.S. also shows a good development,” he said.
Swiss watch exports rose 10 percent in the first seven months of the year, driven by a 29 percent increase in their No.1 market, Hong Kong, that bounced back after a severe downturn.
IWC, which is known for its Pilot’s watches and its Da Vinci and Portugieser collections, invested 42 million Swiss francs ($42.2 million) in the new site that now has 238 staff but capacity for up to 400.
The brand is also pushing its e-commerce activities, expanding its online boutique to all of Europe in September after first launching it in the United States last year.
“The U.S. and the United Kingdom are generally more open to e-commerce,” said Grainger-Herr, who took over as chief executive of IWC last year.
He said the brand that celebrates its 150th birthday this year would also keep growing its mono-brand store network by five to 10 stores each year.
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