A few weeks ago we featured the most valuable limited edition Fossil watch, the Greatest. On the coat-tails of some great feedback on the article I wanted to write about the most expensive Fossil watches to date: the Fossil Swiss.
Launched in early 2013 the Fossil Swiss caused ripples and discussions with watch people and Fossil fans right away. Why is Fossil doing launching a $695-$995 range of Swiss made watches? Who would buy such an expensive Fossil watch? Why are they doing this? These questions are still being asked and I admit it I was part of that camp originally. The day I saw the announcement on Twitter I was following #fossilswiss to see all the details because honestly I couldn't believe it.
Fossil is no stranger to Swiss if you know some of the companies that are part of the Fossil Group. Even earlier than that some of our beloved Defenders had a Swiss Quartz movement, which is different from saying Swiss Made. Swiss Quartz is essentially having the movement meeting Swiss Made standards, but the watch most likely was assembled outside of Switzerland to save costs.
Today Fossil has a design center in the heart of watch making country in Switzerland. One article I read said it's across the street from the Rolex SA factory! It's an interesting strategy to watch and if & when you think in terms of Fossil being a global brand, the allure of having a Swiss made watch isn't necessarily for those of us located in the United States (yet), it's for Asia. The majority of Fossil's watches are Asian made and Asians aren't attracted to Asian made watches. Having the term Swiss Made is a no-brainer for Fossil to market upscale products to the ever increasing and particular Asian customer. Who better than to launch a more attractively priced Swiss Made watch than Fossil?
I can't help but think of Buick here in the United States in comparison. Although perceptions of Buick are changing here in the USA, you still have stereotypes of who owns a Buick, but over in China it's the luxury car to have and aspire to. On a recent trip to China I was SHOCKED to see so many Buicks on the road that didn't look like a Buick. It's a great example of a global company knowing it's local markets and it's the same for Fossil. Buick over here is just a Buick, but over in China it's a status symbol -- same could be said with having Swiss Made on the watch vs. Made in China for the Asian consumer.
Recently I took one of my Fossil Swiss watches over to my local Fossil store and the team there gathered around the watch because they've never seen one in the wild before, I even got a handshake from one of the associates who thanked me for bringing it in. Experiences like this and reading articles on watch sites/magazines, I would bet that the majority of sales of these watches do take place in Asia. Anyways I didn't mean to go into a dissertation on it, but as a marketing person I'm fascinated with strategies like this and obviously I'm watching this closely and hoping it pays off for Fossil in Asia and hopefully in the USA. For me being a Fossil nut, I'm proud to finally say I own a legitimate Swiss Made timepiece that didn't cost me thousands of dollars and maybe even a possible divorce for spending that kind of money on a timepiece.
I don't normally go into reviews and discussions around movements and the same will be said today. I'm a fan of great design and currently I own 2 Fossil Swiss watches, both of them are the larger 45MM case. Fossil does offer an automatic Swiss Made watch, but the 38MM case is a little small for my tastes at least for the price point.
I really enjoy these watches and honestly of all the Fossil watches I own, the FSW7000 is the one I find myself staring at every time I wear it. To me it's perfect and it does draw comments and second glances whenever I wear it. Well done Fossil - keep it up!
A little bonus video from the Youtube archives.