Ambassadors Watches and their ambassadors
Watchmaking brands and the people they choose to represent them tells us a lot about the brand themselves and the core values they represent.
While there are a jaded few in the industry who question how effective brand ambassadors are in helping sell watches, one thing is undeniable: brand ambassadors are everywhere. From athletes to actors and artists, watchmaking is no stranger to the impact of having the right person wear the right watch at the right time. Think of what James Bond did for Omega (and vice versa), Rafael Nadal and Richard Mille or even Roger Federer and Rolex. And the relationship between ambassador and brand can often go beyond marketing. There is power in having an ambassador who not only wears the right watch in public, but who also embodies a brand’s core values, takes the time to understand the arduous work behind creating mechanical watches and, in a lot of cases, discovers (or nurtures) a passion for watchmaking that many of our readers here at WorldTempus share. And the choice of ambassador a brand makes often tells us a lot about the brand themselves. Here are just a few of the noteworthy ambassadors and watches they choose to sport.
Arnold & Son - Sir Mo Farah
Since his career as a long-distance runner began in 2001, Sir Mo Farah, now 37, has decimated record after record in the field and is today the most successful British track athlete in modern Olympic history. Among his achievements: 10 global titles (including gold at the Olympics in 2012 and 2016 in both the 5,000m and 10,000m events), five gold medals at the European Athletics Championships (making him the most successful athlete in individual events in the championships’ history) and in 2018, he set the new European record of running a marathon in 2 hours, 5 minutes and 11 seconds. In 2013, he was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) and knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in the 2017 New Year Honours for his services to athletics (hence the “Sir”).
Sir Mo Farah © Arnold & Son
It seemed fitting for Arnold & Son, a Swiss-based brand with British roots, to strike up a partnership with Sir Farah, who also represents a similar dual-nationality with his Somali origins. Wearing either the DTE or Constant Force Tourbillon from the brand, Sir Farah and Arnold & Son have clearly found common ground in the importance of precision and endurance, as well as embodying British excellence.
Carl F. Bucherer - Li Bingbing
Carl F. Bucherer is no stranger to the world of Hollywood—the brand’s watches have been spotted in action blockbusters such as Atomic Blonde (2017), the John Wick franchise, and The Meg (2018). The latter starred in its ensemble cast the world-renowned Chinese actress and singer Li Binging, whose career spans 20 years and who joined Carl F. Bucherer as the brand’s first global brand ambassador in 2016. Bingbing first rose to fame in the late ‘90s, receiving critical acclaim in China for her roles in A World Without Thieves (2004), Waiting Alone (2005), The Knot (2006), The Forbidden Kingdom (2008), then going on to star in English-speaking roles in Hollywood in movies such as Resident Evil: Retribution (2012) and Transformers: Age of Extinction (2014). But beyond her glamorous path to stardom, Bingbing has also actively used her position to benefit charities and global causes, establishing the L.O.V.E Responsible Life in 2009, a charitable organisation promoting an environmentally responsible lifestyle, and being one of the founders of the One Million-Tree Forest project, launched in the effort to reverse negative environmental effects in China. With her organisaton, Bingbing and Carl F. Bucherer jointly launched the Manero Autodate LOVE, a collection of nine models in bold colours and with intricate details dedicated to the partnership’s shared values of sustainability and traditional craftsmanship.
Li Bingbing © Carl F. Bucherer
Rebellion - Sébastien Buemi
If you know anything about Rebellion Timepieces, you are likely aware that the watch brand has automotive sports in its DNA. Their bold, radically innovative watches needed a brand ambassador that would embody that spirit: enter Sébastien Buemi, a Swiss professional racing driver who competes in Formula E Championships. Buemi has competed in FI World Endurance Championships since 2012, becoming the World Endurance Champion in the LMP1 class in 2014, but his immensely successful career doesn’t stop there. He was crowned the champion in the 2015/2016 season of the FIA Formula E Championship, was chosen as a driver for Red Bull Racing in Formula 1, has piloted the Rebellion Racing Oreca P2 machine at selected races in the North American Endurance Cup and won both the 2018, 2019 and 2020 24 Hours of Le Mans. And on top of all of that, he’s clearly a fan of watches, personalising his limited edition of the Predator 2.0 to have a black dial and touches of bright yellow. The piece was also limited to 16 pieces, Buemi’s lucky number.
Sébastien Buemi © Rebellion Timepieces
Glashütte Original - Boris Herrmann
In the avalanche of sporting events canceled in light of the global pandemic, one was luckily able to go forward this month: the Vendée Globe, a single-handed non-stop global yacht race. Among its 33 skippers in the 2020 edition is German offshore sailor Boris Hermann, who is not only participating to try and win the historic race but is also using the journey to gather important oceanographic data in an effort to help scientists further their research on climate change. This is about more than an extreme sporting challenge, but about preserving the very oceans these sportsmen have set sails on. To complete such an incredibly challenging task (the Vendée Globe is colloquially known as the “Everest of the oceans”), absolute discipline and passion is required. So accompanying Herrmann on this journey is none other than the SeaQ Panorama Date from Glashütte Original, a German brand known for their long history of producing reliable time measuring instruments for navigation on land, in the air and on water. German engineering and ingenuity are undeniably present on the Seaexplorer (Herrmann’s yacht during the race), both in skipper and in his watch.
Boris Herrmann © Glashütte Original
Blancpain – the Sühring twins
A telling sign of the special relationship between brand and ambassador is what each choose to call their partnership. With Blancpain, there are no ambassadors. Only a “circle of friends”, which gets increasingly more populated with a line-up of award-winning and Michelin-starred chefs. The latest to join this exclusive circle of culinary friends is actually a pair: Thomas and Mathias Sühring, twin chefs who also hold two Michelin stars. Bringing German cuisine to the heart of Thailand for the past four years, the Sühring restaurant in Bangkok offers a menu full of contemporary Germanic dishes with Central European influences, making it one of the finest gastronomic locations in the capital. And it remains a family affair: brothers, they work together in the kitchen to bring to life their childhood memories on the plate. Fitting for them to find a home with Blancpain, a brand that cherishes familial values as well as meticulous craftsmanship in their timepieces.
Thomas and Mathias Sühring © Blancpain
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Blancpain is the archetypal Manufacture: with a watchmaking heritage dating back several centuries, it has successfully preserved its watchmaking tradition, whilst welcoming a spirit of innovation.Find out more >
Watches of technical perfection and beauty, through tradition and the force of innovation. Carl F. Bucherer is an independent Swiss watchmaker with expertise in the production of precious...Find out more >
Glashütte Original is the rightful heir to Germany’s 170 years of legacy in the art of watchmaking. Glashütte Original is an authentic high-end manufactory that outfits all of its watches with...Find out more >
A passion for the ultimate in performance is what drives both Rebellion Timepieces and Rebellion Racing, two entities whose worlds are closely intertwined.Find out more >