According to Paul Ziff, Ferragamo shoes and timepieces have three important things in common: quality materials, comfort, and elegance.
When the legendary Salvatore Ferragamo debuted its first timepiece at Baselworld in 2008, many in the fashion world were skeptical that the iconic fashion house could bring its exuberant Italian style to a product that was typically associated with the meticulous precision of Switzerland’s master watchmakers. Ferragamo Timepieces US president Paul Ziff was instrumental in proving the skeptics wrong, launching a spectacular collection of fashion forward timepieces that managed to fuse Italian style and Swiss craftsmanship in a way that remains completely faithful to the Ferragamo name.
“Our success is attributable to the Ferragamo brand itself. Its history as a luxury brand makes it unique,” said Ziff in a recent interview in the prestigious Watch Journal Magazine. “Ferragamo represents classic elegance, which is interesting in the fashion world,” Ziff continued. “Ferragamo’s style is not too trendy; it’s classic but with flair.”
This classically elegant style is exactly what Ferragamo Watches has brought to the luxury watch market. The new 44 mm Ferragamo Lungarno, which Ziff was instrumental in designing, provides an excellent example of what sets the Ferragamo brand apart.
The exquisite detailing on this sophisticated men’s timepiece is pure Ferragamo. “This looks like a watch that might sell for five times its price.” Says Ziff. Watch aficionados appear to agree. With its premium Swiss made automatic movement, exhibition back, and inspired design, the Lungarno has become one of the brand’s best sellers.
Paul Ziff enjoys the challenges of building a new watch brand. “We are still in the early phase with Ferragamo watches, so every day is important,” Ziff told Watch Journal. “With Ferragamo, we play in a price range from $800 to $2,500, and that’s perfect for the US market today.” Ziff believes that the potential in the US market is still untapped and that the key to success for the brand and for himself as a brand manager is to focus on doing the most important things first. “I learned early on that there were things I could accomplish that would make a difference, and I prioritized those,” says Ziff in his Watch Journal article. “If I say I can do something, I do it. If I can’t do it, I say that I can’t do it.”
Ziff believes that watches are as much about aesthetics and art as they are about timekeeping. “To me, watches are romantic,” says Ziff. “I like the fact that even though we have moved past the era when people need to carry watches to tell the time, we still use them.” This philosophy would make perfect sense to legendary shoemaker Salvatore Ferragamo, who turned something as prosaic as a woman’s shoe into a romantic fairy tale that created a fashion empire.
Ferragamo customers have always appreciated quality. Everyone from Hollywood stars like Audrey Hepburn to legends like Andy Warhol and Margaret Thatcher have fallen in love with Ferragamo’s innovative designs and creative use of materials. Paul Ziff intends to keep these customers happy with a growing collection of fine timepieces. “When a brand is in its formative stage, you take nothing for granted,” Ziff told Watch Journal. Ferragamo fans and watch aficionados around the world will be eagerly waiting to see what Paul Ziff does next.
Gevril Group US and Caribbean Agent for Ferragamo Timepieces
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