Baselworld 2014 came to a close today having once again succeeded in bringing together around 150,000 attendees (including representatives from exhibiting companies, buyers, journalists and other visitors) from every continent, underlining its position as the most important marketplace and trend-setting event for the world’s watch and jewellery industry. The eight outstanding show days were comprehensively covered by extensive global media presence. With enthusiastic feedback from all players, Baselworld 2014 ended on a high note, having met and exceeded expectations in terms of business, quality, media presence and exposure.
Baselworld is the ultimate meeting place for the entire industry with all sectors represented: watchmaking, jewellery, diamonds, gemstones and pearls, machines, and supply industries. It is the annual event, where around 1,500 exhibitors, including all the leading brands, from over 40 countries first showcase their innovations and novelties. On top of that, the economic impact is enormous. The Swiss watch industry, 95% of which is represented at Baselworld, had exports of around 21.8 billion Swiss francs in 2013. And it is not only the watch and jewellery industry that benefits; the whole of Switzerland profits, as Baselworld directly and indirectly generates an income of around 2.4 billion Swiss francs a year and thereby approximately 13,000 jobs.
A BLOCKBUSTER FOR GLOBAL BRANDS
Overall, the exhibitors enthusiastically expressed their general satisfaction both with the show and with the business outcome.
Jacques J. Duchêne, President of the Exhibitors’ Committee, confirmed this: “We are extremely satisfied with this year’s Baselworld. The exhibitors made a very good turnover and were positive about the media exposure that has arousedinterest in the Baselworld 2014 event. Baselworld is and remains the unmissable show for the watch and jewellery industry.”
According toFrançois Thiébaud, President of the Swiss Exhibitors’ Committee,”2014 has confirmed the excellence and global prestige of Baselword.” He went on to say that the, “Extensive media coverage and articles published this year in the run-up to the show undoubtedly inspired journalists and retailers to come and discover this universe that is one of a kind: the combination of luxury, innovation and outstanding expertise are the major strengths of the watch and jewellery industry and related sectors.”
“Historical! It’s been a great Baselworld for Bulgari and it will be remembered for a long time,” saidJean-Christophe Babin, CEOof Bulgari. For him, “Baselworld is that moment in time that determines the future. In the course of one week, we unveil our novelties to business partners and to the press of the whole world; possibly one of the most intimate exercises of a brand, the creation. In return, we feel the emotions that our creations evoke. A capital experience for the future to continue to improve ourselves.”
Thierry Stern, CEO of Patek Philippe, found the whole show to be a “very smooth process, pleasant ambiance and excellent attendance of the press.” He went on to say, “We have been present in Basel since 1931, as it is the most important platform for meeting all of our retailers and an excellent platform for our media partners. This year, we received more than 1,000journalists in a few days.”
“Baselworld 2014 has been a good edition, similar to 2013,” said Karl-Friedrich Scheufele, Co-President of Chopard, adding that, “Baselworld reaffirms its dominant position as “The Rendezvous” of the industry.”
Luc Perramond of Hermèsagreed that, “(Baselworld) is a unique platform to meet press and customers from the trade with the opportunity to show our novelties to the world.”
Stressing the importance of the show, Zenith CEO, Jean-Frédéric Dufoursaid, “Baselworld is an indispensable annual event that allows us to meet our clients, partners and journalists in one unique location.”
Tag Heuer CEO, Stephane Linder,was really positive about the business done, saying, “Another excellent year! Sales are in line with our objectives, which were very ambitious. In terms of volume we have already exceeded our 2013 sales at Baselworld by +50%!” When asked about what the show means for his company he said, “This is the trade show of the year where we see allour retailers and our agents in the space of a few days, the only venue where we feel the pulse of the market in the ‘blink of an eye’. In addition, it is also a wonderful platform for communication.”
Walter von Känel, President of Longines, says: “We are very satisfied with Baselworld this year; it has again been a great success.”
According to Sowind CEO Michele Sofisti, “Baselworld has been very strong for us both in terms of image and product presentation as well as sales. We had double the appointments of last year and a clear increase in all our numbers for both the Girard-Perregaux and Jeanrichard brands.”
SPARKLING RESULTS FOR THE JEWELLERY TRADE
The jewellery sector has also benefitted from a good business environment. Pasquale Bruni, CEO of Pasquale Brunisaid, “We experienced very good traffic during the show. In particular, the American and Arabian markets are experiencing strong growth and are of great importance to us.” His daughter Eugenia Bruni added: “Baselworld is the most important show of the year for us. We have felt great energy and have a very positive vision for the future.”
Furrer Jacot CEO, Walter Häusermann,found that Baselworld 2014 “was good and maintained the high level set in 2013.” In terms of business, “the setting was ideal for acquiring new customers and to present the expansion of our range to existing customers.” In his opinion, “Baselworld is highly significant particularly for brand positioning and also as a launch pad for new models and product segments.”
Susan Lam, Director Germany and Central Europe of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC)said, “Baselworld is an excellent platform for Hong Kong jewellery and watch companies to show their
new collections and demonstrate their design and manufacturing capabilities to the international buyers. During the show a significant part of their annual business is initiated and it is a good chance for the companies at the Hong Kong pavilion to meet important buyers and learn more about the demands of their international customers. They can also compare their performance with global industry players.”
PARAMOUNT FOR THE DIAMONDS, GEMSTONES & PEARLS BUSINESS
For exhibitor Groh + Ripp, “Baselworld provides the platform for fostering and forging international contacts” said Managing Director Bernd-Willi Ripp,who was more than satisfied with the show, adding that, “For us Baselworld has been very positive with very good transactions.”
Raj Mehta, CEOof international diamond merchant Rosy Blue, stressed the importance of the show for his company, saying, “It is vital for us to be at Baselworld because it is the most important trade show on the calendar that brings together clients, prospects and colleagues from around the globe,” and also because,“Baselworldis the perfect platform to represent our new products, and also to understand new trends of the industry. Due to its immense audience, its way of allocating exhibitors, it attracts the best players in the industry. It complements what Rosy Blue manufactures.”
AN UNRIVALLED MEDIA MAGNET
Baselworld continues to draw major media interest from all around the globe and remains one of the best-covered events in the world. The world’s financial press, the major national dailies, the lifestyle publications, all the trade press, the world’s biggest TV channels, and the key players in the field of social media regularly disseminated news from Baselworld 2014 to every corner of the earth, underlining the show’s claim as the most important event for the watch and jewellery industry. Baselworld 2014 attracted around 4,000 accredited journalists from over 70 countries.
BASELWORLD -BRILLIANCE MEETS
During eight days, Baselworld was once again the focal point where all the leading players representing all sectors of the global watch and jewellery industry were able to shine. Sylvie Ritter, Managing Director of Baselworld, reflects on the end of the show with a great deal of pride in a brilliant Baselworld 2014: “This year’s edition was a true and highly focused reflection of the changes, trends and innovations within the entire industry,” said Ms Ritter, noting that, “Baselworld is the ideal platform for the watch and jewellery industry to showcase innovations, attract international interest and enhance business.” She was particularly pleased also with the extensive media presence and comprehensive coverage, which was undoubtedly another contributing factor to the show’s success.
All of the above reaffirm Baselworld’s premier position in the watch and jewellery industry and with that comes an obligation to reset the bar for next year. Not afraid to meet the challenge, Ms Ritter says, “And as we put the closing touches to Baselworld 2014, we are already applying ourselves to our mission of maintaining a perfect harmony between tradition and present day requirements so that Baselworld will continue to fully reflect the reality of the industry and its players next year and beyond.”
The next Baselworld will be held from 19 –26 March 2015.