Last year, Jean-Claude Beaver decided to take over the position of head of the watch department of LVMH Group. It seems that he is not prepared to focus much on Tag Heuer. Twelve months later, the brand has been completely transformed, signing new ambassadors (such as David Kuta and Cara Delevingne) to attract younger customer groups. However, his most controversial move is to facilitate the first cooperation between Switzerland and Silicon Valley to launch the Tag Heuer Connected Watch smart watch. So how did he, once known as the savior of mechanical watchmaking, become an advocate of Swiss smart watches?
Question: If the watchmaking industry is known to be slowing down, but since you took control, Tag Heuer has maintained a high level of growth …
Jean-Claude Beaver: I’m glad to hear you say that … I don’t think I’ve seen this trend. But I hope Tag Heuer can become a disruptive brand-creative and very avant-garde. We don’t think too much, don’t talk too much, just put into action and then achieve the goal.
Question: So you choose the most avant-garde thing that Swiss watchmaking brands can do and decide to develop a smart watch …
Jean-Claude Beaver: We have to develop and manufacture Connected Watch because it is a new generation of watches. TAG Heuer’s entire management and operation system requires very profound changes to adapt to the new production line. From communication strategies to boutique staff dressing, everything has to change. The only thing that remains the same is our DNA. Since its founding in 1860, Tag Heuer has been an avant-garde brand.
Q: You decided to cooperate with Google and Intel, which is very rare in the watchmaking world that regards ‘independent and independent manufacturing’ as a guideline. In your opinion, is it necessary to work with technology giants to develop this smart watch together?
Jean-Claude Beaver: Of course, the end result looks great too! From a distance, you won’t notice that this is a smart watch. Except that the case is not made of steel, its appearance is no different from the Carrera Heuer 01. So far, all smart watches, from Garmin to Apple, look pretty good. However, at a glance, they are wearable connected smart devices, not real watches. TAG Heuer took a different path and took a different path.
Q: After launching the Apple Watch, the Tag Heuer Connected Watch will be released. Do you think this is an advantage?
Jean-Claude Beaver: Yes! Apple helped us with the most difficult part. After the Apple Watch was launched, smart watches became the focus of discussion. Thanks to this, we don’t need to do much publicity. Not long ago, Apple reached a cooperation with Hermes to give luxury watches a luxurious quality.
Q: Today Tag Heuer is unique in the LVMH Group and the industry as a whole … Is this part of the strategic plan?
Jean-Claude Beaver: The competition between three brands from the same group is meaningless, and there is enough room for competition outside the group. Of course, this is not a big problem, because we set three completely different price points: the average retail price of Tag Heuer $ 3,000, Zenith’s average retail price of $ 7,000, and the average price of Hublot $ 22,000. The only thing similar is that Tag Heuer is destructive and price-friendly; Hublot is destructive and luxurious.
Q: What are your expectations and expectations for the development of Tag Heuer in the next few years?
Jean-Claude Beaver: TAG Heuer should stick to the luxury price positioning at its fingertips. I hope that it can become the first choice for Harvard Business School graduate students or young entrepreneurs to get started with luxury goods and watches. This is our goal. Within two years, TAG Heuer will be perfect; within two years, TAG Heuer will be loved by everyone.