by John Sealander
Gevril Group, understanding the importance of the growing Asian watch market, sent three representatives to the 2011 Hong Kong Watch and Clock Fair, including Samuel Friedman, Gevril Group owner and president.
This year’s watch show, which took place from September 7-11, was the largest ever for the 30-year-old event. Over 700 exhibitors from 14 countries were represented, including Gevril friend Haurex Italia, producer of high quality wristwatches with innovative design and materials that are always in line with the latest fashion trends.
The Brand Name Gallery, a highlight of the fair, featured 110 top quality brands from all around the world. Nearly 17,000 buyers participated in this year’s show, viewing watches on display from Hong Kong, Mainland China, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Switzerland, UAE, UK and the United States.
Visitors commented that the Hong Kong Watch and Clock Fair was much more casual than similar trade fairs in other parts of the world. It was easy to network and make contacts with suppliers and potential buyers, with many cocktail parties throughout the event along with the popular Wine Cellar located in the event’s prestigious Grand Hall.
Customers will typically leave flowers and even elaborate fruit baskets at the booths of brands they like during the show. This tradition goes back to early Watch and Clock Fairs and all exhibitors seem to enjoy receiving these beautiful gifts.
Walking from booth to booth, it is easy to determine the brands that are the most popular because of the bouquets adorning their booths.
The flowers reminded one Gevril Group representative of the “likes” brands receive on Facebook.
The importance of fashion in the watch industry was one of the big themes of this year’s show and a public session talk entitled “Crossover between Watches and Fashion” by fashion expert and model Christie Wo was well attended. Renowned watch critic and columnist Simon Shia also gave a popular talk about the “Finest Watches to Watch.”
Hong Kong is already the world’s second largest watch and clock exporter, with over $3.2 billion in sales during the first five months of 2011 alone. With exports to the Chinese mainland rising at a rate of 27% a year, Asian demand for luxury watches is expected to grow dramatically in the years ahead. Some people already consider the Hong Kong Watch and Clock Fair the world’s largest timepiece event. Since popular Gevril brands like Eterna already have strong ties to China, this is an event that will be important to the Gevril Group in the year’s ahead.
About Gevril Group
Gevril Group is the sole US agent for Haurex Watches. Meet us March 8-15, 2012 to view the fashion-forward Haurex exhibit at Baselworld 2012, Hall 2.0, Booth C-70. Contact us by email or at 845-425-9882.
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