Every luxury brand is now rushing to offset their carbon emissions, as ESG kicks in as a required part of company accounts and product policy. What is ESG? Environmental and Social Governance. That means profit is not the prime aim of any business, the objective is social good, sustainable production runs – as defined by activists and experts. Not the Board.
So Oris, like other watch brands is launching this Aquis special edition which helps preserving Wadden Sea habitat for future generations, which is a socially good thing. It also ticks a box on carbon offset too. Nice work.
The Oris Dat Watt is a limited edition model and it provides funds from each sale towards preserving the Waden Sea area of Northern Ntherlands/Denmark. Call it a green levy if you like, soon every product will have a green tax on it by law, so get used to the idea.
Great looking watch, so if you support the idea of `wilding,’ which is reserved nature areas in Europe where humans are largely restricted from entering, then Dat Watt (German dialect for the Wadden Sea) is a purchase that makes a difference.
Case Multi-piece stainless steel case, unidirectional rotating bezel
Size 43.50 mm (1.713 inches)
Dial Gradient blue/grey Luminous material Hands and indices
Top glass Sapphire, domed on both sides, anti-reflective coating inside
Case back Stainless steel, screwed, special engravings
Stainless steel screw-in security crown with crown protection
Bracelet Stainless steel metal bracelet, folding clasp with extension
Water resistance 30 bar (300 m)
Movement: Number Oris 761
Functions Centre hands for hours, minutes and seconds, centre hand moon phase, date window, instantaneous date, date corrector,
fine timing device and stop-second
Power reserve 38 hours
Special edition Supplied in a special presentation box
Swiss retail price CHF 2,450 (APPROX £1920)
Available May 2021
Climate change is all the rage and so watch manufacturers must now tick sustainability boxes or face action by globalist governments, keen to tell consumers what to buy, and brands what to produce. That’s just how it is. Nobody gets to vote on it, OK? So please welcome some striking new ladies watches from Citizen, which consume less raw material to produce. More details below.
With its sustainably produced line of women’s watches, Citizen L has championed the effort to manufacture sustainable watches that prioritize the preservation of our global environment and societies of people worldwide. The first in the Citizen brand lines to adopt synthetically lab-grown diamonds, Citizen L uses these to express the natural beauty of Earth elements for the Ambiluna collection. This collection of women’s watches features a new model inspired by “water” and two other models influenced by mineral elements.
Inspired by “water” — one of four natural elements that make up all things — the new model philosophically completes the connection of the Earth to our future. The current models intro-duced in 2020 were inspired by the three elements: “Earth, Fire and Air.” The watches feature straps made from recycled plastics, gathered from beaches, so we get to clean up a little part of the earth every time we shop online. It’s all good. We love the deep blue one by the way, it has a great simplicity of design.
As you might expect the new models use the Eco-Drive system, which gives a ten year battery lifespan, rather than the typical 2-3 year span from a normal watch battery. Oh you thought that a Citizen Eco-Drive could defeat physics and just keep recharging its battery cell using light forever? Er..no, physics doesn’t work like that. The capacity to hold charge diminishes over time – nobody can stop that process, not even Elon Musk. That’s why battery smartphones, bicycles, cars, watches or anything else eventually dies – it cannot charge itself anymore.
Further, two limited-edition models influenced by “minerals” will be included in the Ambiluna collection. Drawing on the organic transformations of mineral elements over Earth’s long geo-logical evolution, these new models incorporate many stunningly unique colours and patterns.
The UK price and release date are to be determined, says Citizen.
So Brexit finally happened, what a lark. Will it have any efect on Swiss watch imports, prices or parts availability? Nope. The Swiss are too crafty as regards throttling supply, regardless of the deals that politicians do. But what else can the world of watches expect to see in 2021?
The Democracy of Kickstarter Will Get Bigger
All the tools you need to launch your own watch brand are already in place. Movements are cheap and reliable, specialist companies offer sapphire crystals, dials, bezels, straps etc in low volume production runs. NWC magazine can see a boom year ahead for crowdfunded watches, as people realise that Indie watch brands offer great value, high spec watches at about half the price of a typical Swiss automatic/GMT. Those who build their brand with striking designs, plus special rewards and deals on social media channels will do better than the samll companies who simply pile onto the latest trend.
2. UK watch retailing options on the High Street are set to shrink drastically.
There simply isn’t the footfall to sustain H Samuel/Signet, Goldsmiths, Beaverbrooks and Chisholm Hunter shops in many locations. With another miserable summer ahead as regards overseas tourism, plus lockdowns until spring, the UK High Street will see dozens of chain stores switch to online retailing. Brands like Seiko, Swatch Group or LVMH will be fine, but some of the smaller fry may struggle to adapt. Watches of Switzerland will gradually tighten its noose on High Street watch shop prime locations in London, Manchester, Edinburgh and other major retail outlets. Only boutique, luxury level watch shops in secure, non-scumbag areas will be viable in a few years’ time. Those who keep trying to sell £500 Citizen/Armani watches in towns where 60% of the adult population are in receipt of some sort of benefit will go bust, slowly but surely.
The luxury Swiss brands are going to have to form the wagons in a circle and that process will begin to gather pace next year.
3. The Cousins vs Swiss industry case will be resolved in the name of climate change.
This argument over spare parts supply is a classic David vs Goliath battle, and it started years ago as Rolex and others, tried to make sure that luxury watches could not be repaired, except via their authorised dealerships. Restriction of OEM parts is a tactic the car industry and others tried in the past, and it usually fails. But in 2021 the focus on climate change and constant screeching and foot-stamping from activists like Hostage Harry and the Exorcist kid from Sweden will cause a complete capitulation from the Swiss on all things recycling and less component miles being clocked up.
How can you defend the cause of blocking local independent watch repairs, or claim that buying new is better for the planet than refurbishing a ten year old TAG? The Swiss watch industry, along with jewellery and fast fashion, will face a vehement campaign against it this coming year by Marxist groups like BLM, Antifa and XR. By settling the Cousins dispute they take a step towards championing the art of hand-crafted repair, recycled parts, promoting a less disposable consumer goods manufacturing policy, fewer product miles and so on. All those mean marketing brownie points in the MSM.
4. The UK government will encourage manufacturing with grants.
Previously EU rules meant that the UK could not offer to subsidise sectors of the economy, like fishing, shipbuilding, aircraft etc. Now it is free to actually invest in making things, and then selling things around the world. Just a few million here and there in watchmaking courses at Altrincham and other locations, start-up loans, partnerships with Universities, overseas showcases/pavilions etc will make a big difference. There is so much talent in the UK, let’s hope that the UK government does more than buy a few more fishing trawlers this year.
5. Rolex waiting lists will get worse.
Next year will see the rich getting even richer, via Bitcoin, cyber scams, stock market booms, property values rising in certain areas etc. Much of the profits will be spent on Rolex watches because they are the symbol that ays to the world, `I’ve made it.’ So expect popular models to be unobtainable, expect bribes to be offered, price premiums of 5-8 grand on pre-owned or flipped Subs, Daytonas and GMTs.
In the used market, the big profits will be made on bigger case size Rolex models. Anything under 37mm will struggle to match the 20% increase in values that the bigger Oysters will achieve this year. No, I’m not joking, people will buy Oysters or Explorers because they cannot find a decent used Sub under 8K by June. Just like demand for nice 4 bedroomed houses that can be sub-let in University cities, the demand for Rolex watches far outstrips supply and that trend will continue throughout 2021.
The 42mm white dial Explorer II is my top pick of 2021. You could make a two grand profit, if you can find a mint pre-owned example for about seven grand, because the rise in values will be huge at the top end of the Rolex market and that tsunami of cash means all boats will rise.
Swiss brand Oris are ticking the green/climate change boxes, like many watch brands these days. The latest model called Hangang River, includes a donation to a clean-up of a much used industrial river in South Korea. Some might say that is the responsibility of the Korean government, but never mind.
It’s a partnership with the Korea Federation of Environmental Movements, and local litter picks, some work to old dams that were placed on the Hangang in the 80s to speed up mass industrialisation of the region and dealing with algae build-up are all goals for the programme. Worthy stuff.
Of course you may just love this vivid, very striking bright green watch, and all its beautifully made details. Will it become a colectors item in future? Unlikely we think, so investors should buy an Oris Carl Brashear limited edition bronze case diver instead.
Why? Just look at it. Cool, timeless, bronze case will age like fine wine, plus it has global appeal – the Hangang does not. Just saying.
The green Hangang River model retails at about £2100. Quite expensive for an Oris we think, but you are saving the world, so as Harry and Meghan would say from a video in their private jet, `It’s all good bro.’
Here are the tech specs on the Hangang River limited edition model;
Case; Multi-piece stainless steel case, unidirectional rotating bezel with ceramic insert
Size 43.50 mm (1.713 inches)
Dial Gradient green
Luminous material Hands and indices with
Top glass Sapphire, domed on both
sides, anti-reflective coating inside
Case back Stainless steel, screwed, special
engravings of the Hangang River map
Stainless steel screw-in
security crown with crown protection
Bracelet Stainless steel metal bracelet,
security folding clasp with extension
Water resistance 30 bar (300 m)
Number Oris 743
Functions Centre hands for hours and
minutes, continuous seconds hand at
9 o’clock, circular date window with
white indicator, date corrector, fine
timing device and stop-second
Power reserve 38 hours
Limited edition 2,000 pieces, each
delivered in a special presentation box
Swiss retail price CHF 2,500
Available August 2020