Last time we spoke, you demonstrated an in-depth knowledge of the Jaeger-LeCoultre tourbillons. Does your job title really do you justice?
Well a title only represents the present. I have done everything from product development to communication and distribution. What is important from my personal point of view is to be able to evolve within a company and make your experience and expertise available to others. It’s important to have an overall view of the company rather than focus on a particular area. I prefer going into detail and the more I do the more I learn, about Jaeger-LeCoultre but also about the watchmaking industry in general. I am in charge of creation and marketing today, but who knows what awaits me tomorrow?
What does that mean in terms of your day-to-day work?
I always try to link what we are doing today with what we have done throughout our history. But at the same time I also try to remember what has made the Jaeger-LeCoultre brand popular. When you understand why you are doing your job you can give some meaning to what people are doing at the brand, which leads to a much more collaborative way of working, with everyone pulling in the same direction.
Your approach to marketing seems to be very different from other high-end brands – even those of your neighbours in the Vallée de Joux…
We are characterized by our products and we are a brand whose products are stronger than the brand itself. Each Swiss replica watches has its own integrity and authenticity. You cannot compare a Reverso with a Master Control, for example. We try to make the product stand on its own and the brand invests its heritage and values in the product. This is why I look after marketing: to make sure that marketing follows the product and does not become something that guides the company. Marketing is not a tool in itself for us.
So we cannot really talk about pillars of marketing in the case of Jaeger-LeCoultre?
Not really, but it depends what you understand by marketing. We are not just creating fake watches for the sake of it. Although there is a huge amount of heritage and brand DNA in our products, we do of course listen to the market and follow what journalists and bloggers are writing, because this is an important part of the product development process.
Environmental responsibility is an important part of your brand philosophy as well, though, isn’t it?
Yes, but it is part of the way we think. We don’t just do things so that we can say we are environmentally friendly. If you do things that are neither environmentally friendly nor logical, people will notice. People at the company are living this philosophy on a daily basis, it’s part of their heritage and part of life in the Vallée de Joux. It is part of our values.
How much of this spirit comes from the fact that we are in the Vallée de Joux?
Well, you have your car charging in our car park using electricity generated by hydro-electric power from the lake. I think if you visit a watch brand in Geneva and one in the Vallée de Joux you can sense the difference in mentality. Jaeger-LeCoultre is firmly rooted in this valley and the people who live and work here have grown up with this spirit. When you are surrounded by nature you cannot forget it. You see it and we are subject to its whims – we feel its power and we know we should respect it.
Not only is Jaeger-LeCoultre one of the rare manufactures, you also have everything grouped under the same roof, which is even more unusual. How important is this for the brand?
It has been like this for over 150 years. We had buses to bring people to work over 100 years ago. We were already the biggest manufacture in the Vallée de Joux over 100 years ago so we have been living like this for 150 years and we are way ahead of many other brands who decided they wanted to become a manufacture only 20 or 30 years ago.
This year is a big year for the Reverso but the Gyrotourbillon continues to evolve and there is still huge potential for Jaeger-LeCoultre’s Dual Wing technology. Which direction will the brand be heading in over the coming years?
Who knows? These new concepts were developed to show that we are capable of doing this kind of thing in-house at Jaeger-LeCoultre. But we can also produce affordable watches in steel. Even the Reverso is extremely complicated and the latest evolutions of the case, for example, with the slider to correct the second time zone, are equally as important for us as the Hybris Mechanica. The changes are very subtle and you have to be a connoisseur to spot them but we want even our most simple watches to have something different. It’s always great to wear an exceptional watch, of course, but the majority of our customers appreciate and understand copy watches UK that are much simpler but nevertheless have that little something special. It’s important that the customers discover something new when we present a watch to them.
Designing the Reverso Tribute Calendar. © Cheap Fake Jaeger-LeCoultre
Independently of whether or not the industry is or is not in crisis, how do you see the brand developing?
I think it’s all the more important to preserve the integrity of the brand. The tougher the economic climate, the more people turn to trusted brands. Everything we have here, with everyone under the same roof, gives this feeling of confidence. It’s the same feeling you get when you get home in the evening and you are with your family. When things are tough you like to be surrounded by your family. Internally, this helps us to endure crises with serenity.