Girard-Perregaux An interview with Patrick Pruniaux
“We are increasing the consistency of Girard-Perregaux and densifying its message”
You took the reins of GP a year ago; how is the brand doing?
First of all, it had good foundations that I inherited from my predecessors, especially in terms of products. While we began by strengthening the management, Girard-Perregaux can rely on passionate personnel at all levels and there is a powerful team spirit. We have done a lot of work on the brand over the past six months, of which only part is already visible. We had to conduct an analysis of the brand and then ensure it was expressing itself in the right way. For example, the logo has evolved and is now simplified and modernized with the bridge summing up 225 years of history, expertise in chronometry, as well as its exclusive nature that we must perpetuate, rather than seeking to make it universal. Moreover, the vast majority of our sales occur in high-quality points of sale run by major retailers such as Bucherer, Wempe and the Hour Glass. We are committed to maintaining and strengthening our status as a loyal and stable partner and do not intend to open any own-name stores.
Which are GP’s strongest assets in appealing to today’s customers?
We are very confident that the products are all in place. You may recall our Laureato Carbon Glass concept presented at SIHH 2019? We are pleased to state that we have sufficiently mastered it to launch a limited series of 100 chronographs with a very good price-quality ratio: the Laureato Absolute Rock. This is a new type of ultra-resistant and lightweight carbon that no longer requires a container to ensure its water resistance. Its spectacular blue and black veins make it truly unique. We are going to release some very exciting products. The brand values are well perceived by connoisseurs, but end customers in general probably need more explanations in this respect. Girard-Perregaux stands out for the harmony it achieves between watchmaking content and design, which remains at the heart of its DNA, as well as for its relaxed Italian elegance. Today it is interesting to belong to a club of brands that are exclusive in terms of production, doubtless more so than those that sell a million units. When I see someone wearing a Girard-Perregaux, I see a connoisseur’s choice. Not producing too much is an asset and it is up to us to explain this brand strength.
Laureato Absolute Rock © Girard-Perregaux
What will GP look like in 2020 and will that be a turning point for the brand?
Girard-Perregaux will assert itself. As I said earlier, the products are goo and, there is no need for a new collection; all we have to do is develop those that already exist by building on our strengths: consolidating our pillars through certain variations; enhance stability; and tell our story. We can actually choose to focus on two geometrically spectacular elements: the bridges, particularly in the actual Bridge collection, and the octagon of the Laureato collection. In my opinion, these two collections represent the brand on a very powerful level, which needs to be worked on even more, in a traditional yet also contemporary way. The Quasar model from the Bridge collection presented at Miami Watches & Wonders with its sapphire case illustrates this desire; it was initiated by the previous team but I find it very interesting. In fact, Stefano Macaluso [former Product Development Director and a trained architect], who has become a friend, continues to work cooperate closely with Girard-Perregaux and we are working on some projects together aimed at renewing ties with the brand's roots. In parallel, we have invested massively in the manufacture, as well as in the Villa Girard-Perregaux in order to transform it into a museum. We are doing a huge amount of fundamental work on our identity.
Ever since 1791, Girard-Perregaux has been pursuing its course in the best tradition of Fine Watchmaking. The Maison’s history has been characterised by legendary timepieces that combine cutting-edge design with innovative technology.Find out more >
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