When Guido Terreni took over as chief govt officer of Parmigiani Fleurier in early 2021, the Swiss watch model was a effectively revered if considerably obscure maker of excessive horology, difficult timepieces coveted by a small group of collectors and fans.
Underneath Terreni’s management, Parmigiani Fleurier has leaped into the highlight to hitch the likes of Girard-Perregaux, Audemars Piguet and Patek Philippe in producing luxurious Swiss sports activities watches with demand far outstripping provide. Gross sales tripled and manufacturing doubled after the Milan-born govt refocused the model on only one watch line — the now red-hot Tonda PF.
The previous president of horology at LVMH-owned Bulgari, Terreni redesigned and relaunched the Tonda inside half a yr of taking up as CEO. Costs for the integrated-bracelet sports activities watch begin at about 22,000 francs ($24,655) for a easy time-only metal mannequin. They go as excessive as about 163,000 francs for a flying tourbillon with a platinum case. Ready lists now stretch greater than a yr.
Terreni credit the model’s independence with giving him the power to maneuver shortly to alter its focus. Parmigiani Fleurier is owned by the muse of the Sandoz household, which arrange the corporate that has advanced into drugmaker Novartis SA.
“It’s given us the liberty to have a really brief determination course of as a result of I’ve the liberty to do what I would like,” Terreni mentioned in an interview on the current Watches and Wonders honest in Geneva. “This is essential as a result of that’s how you retain pure the concept of what you need to do.”
The redesigned Tonda assortment now accounts for about 98% of the model’s gross sales, in accordance with Terreni. He wouldn’t present particular gross sales numbers and mentioned the model now produces “just a few thousand” watches a yr, with out being extra particular.
Jean-Philippe Bertschy, an analyst at Vontobel, estimates Parmigiani makes about 3 000 watches yearly, with gross sales of about 100 million francs.
“Gross sales are broad based mostly when it comes to areas and Terreni, the CEO, has a superb observe file, nice relationships and nice ambitions for the model,” Bertschy mentioned. Parmigiani has “all of the components for a profitable story, particularly with its legitimacy in watchmaking,” the analyst added.
A grasp restorer
The model was based a couple of quarter century in the past by Michel Parmigiani, a Swiss watchmaker who rose to prominence as a grasp restorer of useful vintage timepieces.
With monetary backing from the muse, Parmigiani launched his model in 1996. It produced watches and in addition spawned a hub of provide and element makers, together with Vaucher Manufacture, which produces actions for different manufacturers in addition to Parmigiani Fleurier.
From the start, the model has had extra substance than many rivals, in accordance with Roger Ruegger, editor-in-chief of WatchTime.
“With the arrival of Terreni, Parmigiani Fleurier has lastly grow to be extra constant and maybe additionally disciplined in highlighting its aesthetic and practical codes, which makes this model way more recognizable and finally extra fascinating,” Ruegger mentioned.
It was on the 2022 version of Watches and Wonders that Terreni’s retooled model received the eye of the larger watch world. The 27,000-franc Tonda PF GMT Rattrapante, an authentic tackle the complication to trace a second time zone, received reward from fans and the watch press alike.
Booming luxurious market
At this yr’s honest, the model unveiled the Tonda PF Minute Rattrapante, a watch that makes use of a complication within the motion and a hand on the dial as a minute timer. This contrasts with the normal technique of utilizing a graduated timer on a rotating watch bezel to time actions, comparable to boiling pasta.
Terreni has chopped the variety of retailers promoting the model by 65% since taking up. That’s serving to the revived marque distinguish itself amid a booming Swiss luxurious watch market from larger rivals whom, he says, are all making totally different variations of equally styled timepieces.
“It’s a query of favor and a query of status and a query of singularity of the proposal,” mentioned Terreni. “We reconnected with an viewers which is extraordinarily educated and they’re searching for issues that aren’t mainstream.”
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