In conversation with The Godfather Of The Watch Industry, Jean-Claude Biver

Marking The Hours With The Godfather Of The Watch Industry, Jean-Claude Biver On The Evolving Watch Industry & More

15 Dec 2023 |
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This man has been around in the industry for over 50 years! Known for building brands into what they are today, he’s known by the name “Godfather Of The Watch Industry”. He’s none other than Jean-Claude Biver.

We caught up with him to discuss his journey, outlook on the watch industry, and more at Dubai Watch Week 2023

THM: In today’s day and age, every watch people want is unavailable. And you said, “Buy the watches you can buy, don’t look for something that’s not available. What are your thoughts on this? 

Mr. Biver: You should buy what you like, not necessarily something that will appreciate or make you look like others. But, buy with your eyes. Next, buy as per what you can afford. Don’t overspend. These are two basic rules one should follow while collecting watches. 

THM: You’ve been in the industry for over 50 years. How have you seen the industry evolve? Do you think everything is becoming marketing-driven as opposed to product-driven? 

Mr. Biver: Yes the industry has evolved. 50 years ago, no magazines across the globe ever featured an ad or an article about watches. But today, you will atleast find one article and ad about watches. This goes to show that watches have become a part of fashion. Like fashion, there are trends for watches that are in and those that are not seeing a huge demand. While the watch industry has become larger, it has also become specific. This evolution though normal is something one has to adapt to. 

THM: We’ve also seen several micro-brands and new brands come up in the industry. What is that one piece of advice you’d like to give such brands who have just launched or will launch in the new future? 

Mr. Biver: My first advice would be to be patient. Next, be selective. Thirdly, keep your feet on the ground if you want to grow. Lastly, be surrounded by good people as they will help you be successful. 

THM: Lastly, could you shed light on Biver watches? 

Mr. Biver: I had been playing around with the idea of Biver watches and finally it has come to fruition with a little influence of my son. For me, it’s a privilege to be able to transmit to my son in an easy manner. With Biver watches, I can finally do what I want freely with no concepts or budgets to follow. If the end of my career is marked with freedom what else do I need? Biver watches should reflect my vision, and my past and portray a part of me.