TAG Heuer Interview with Jean-Claude Biver
We talk with the man who announced three major new partnerships and presented two new watches in just one hour at the Geneva International Motor Show.
(Photo: Jean-Claude Biver, CEO of TAG Heuer and President of the LVMH Group Watches Division, and Andy Palmer, President and CEO of Aston Martin)
You have just announced a new partnership with the Monaco Automobile Museum, which is great for a brand with a watch called Monaco. But how did this come about?
We heard that the museum was going to be rebuilt over the next few years and we thought it would be a good opportunity to partner with them. We have always had a very good relationship with High Serene Highness Prince Albert, and as TAG Heuer is heavily involved in the automotive world, we thought it would be good to look for synergies. We are also present at the Monaco Grand Prix, which is the only one on the calendar where we have branding on the circuit.
You have teamed up with Gulf Oil again. How do you see the future of this partnership?
We already partnered with Gulf Oil in the past and I don’t know why it stopped, but this is an opportunity for us to take ownership of our history. Gulf and TAG Heuer have a common history and I’m very happy that we have been able to reconnect with Gulf, especially for the future. We need to evolve with the times. The icons and the historic moments are important, but they become even more important if you can link them to the future. Nobody knows what the future holds but we want to bring this partnership alive and not just use its historical components.
How does the partnership with Formula E fit in to your motorsport portfolio?
We are one of the founding partners so we have been there since the start. I am proud of this because it is a technology of the future that we cannot ignore. This shows that we are willing to be involved in all aspects of motorsport.
How would you like the partnership with Aston Martin and Red Bull Racing to evolve?
We have a lot of ideas, for example to do joint events between the three of us. That would be a great way of exploiting the synergies between the three brands.
You have a stand at the Geneva International Motor Show that is as big as some of the car manufacturers’ stands. Are you personally a fan of cars?
Generally people who like watches also like cars and the two have always been linked, particularly in the case of TAG Heuer. It’s impossible to like watches without having an affinity for cars. I have this affinity, but I like both classic and modern cars. I also like electric vehicles and would be delighted to sit down in something that is more like a self-driving living room and be driven to work every day.
Don’t you do that already…?
Yes, but I have to sit upright. I’ve seen the new Aston Martin Lagonda with its fantastic interior, where four people can recline in comfort. You can even remove the steering wheel. It would be great to get in and just say “I want to go to TAG Heuer in La Chaux-de-Fonds” and let the car do the rest. We could even do interviews in it in the future and I could ask it to drive you home when we’ve finished.
Aston Martin Lagonda © Aston Martin
Over 150 years of watchmaking savoir-faire and technical innovation have made TAG Heuer a global reference in avant-garde sports watches. As it tracked the rise of sports demanding increasingly precise timekeeping, TAG Heuer continually developed its unique capabilities through a long-term vision of what watchmaking is today, and what it will look like tomorrow.Find out more >
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