“Doxa” is the Greek word for glory. Over time it has also come to signify the splendor of timepieces with a reputation for value, quality and exceptional workmanship. Three years ago, DOXA appointed the charismatic Jan Edöcs as CEO. As a hands-on team player, he personifies DOXA’s “beyond the box” concept, which has propelled the company from relative obscurity to the forefront of the watch industry with the rising popularity of its classic antique timepieces.
Among Jan Edöcs’s objectives was drawing attention to the company’s history. He reworked the brand’s reputation from ground up, emphasizing its history, technological prowess, and classic automobile designs. This preparation has been largely accomplished in the present day, and subsequent accumulations can now be built upon these resources.
Our founder, Karishma Karer at The Hour Markers caught up with the CEO to dive into the world of diver’s watches, DOXA’s evolution and more!
How has the evolution been for DOXA globally, and in the Indian markets? Sharing his thoughts Jan said, “Looking back at the past in the 60s, DOXA was one of the first diving watches ever created. With several changes, the DOXA group moved in the direction of watch collectors. Being in existence for over 75 years, we are growing. When I returned from the USA, I knew there was much more to the brand. Taking the risk of being a museum brand- where people are tapping on your shoulders but no one is really buying the watch, has paid off. We like to call it a rebirth. We started the online business in 2001, and up until 2.5 years ago, there was no retailer. What we understand best is the online market; 2/3rd of our sales are from online consumers. It’s not about selling, it’s about connecting and getting feedback.”
From analysing markets to finding the customers that most loved DOXA watches, the UK and Australia seemed to be the main players. After venturing there online and not selling via any third parties, DOXA then started the offline business.
Talking about their plans for expansion, he said, “With the aim of becoming an exclusive brand, we wish to have 250-300 stores globally. Later, we ventured into Europe and this year we’re happy to open up in the Middle East. Our next stop is Asia! We are a family owned business and do not belong to any group. We’re doing well and are ready to wait because we know exactly what we want.”
Year after year, DOXA has been making a home in the hearts of consumers. Did you know they hit 60% of sales from first-time buyers, every year? Even though they do not fall into the “premium” category, their watch is something that would make it to your wrist. Even in India, the end consumers aren’t aware of the brand, but they will slowly come to it. Like Jan said, “India’s market is what we would see in 5-10 years, It’s a very mature market and has huge potential!”
With consumers moving towards more sustainable choices, does DOXA cater to this characteristic? Sharing his thoughts on the same, Jan said, “The Swiss mechanical watch doesn’t consume any energy. There’s no need to plug in like the smartwatches that attract the youth. However, first-time buyers know the importance of a mechanical watch. Diving watches have functionality behind them. In India, we are educating people about watches. Having a diver’s watch has become a fashion, the new one being desk-divers. DOXA just fits into that category – either you like it or you don’t like it.”
Did you know that Jan Edocs went into the nitty-gritties of the DOXA Army watch? Going into archives and approaching the government he realised the oil-dipped process behind the watch and not a PVD finish. Sharing the story behind this he said, “We knew it was there but were not allowed to talk about it. All the proofs were avaliable with DOXA serving the Swiss Army divers in 1968. People in the Swiss Army in 1968 did not know it existed. The divers were hidden. Why so? Last November, on completion of 50 years, the Ministry of Defence disclosed it. The Swiss army had divers because they were training other forces secretly. The blackened pieces were all oxidised by us to revive it to its original stainless steel look.”
It’s believed that the Switzerland river bridges have diamonds underneath them. In fact, a limited edition piece was also discovered there which was then delivered to the Swiss Army at that time. The orange-dialled DOXA was only released for divers and doctors initially! DOXA has come a long way from making 100 watches in a day to be sold in New York to now making sales of 4200 watches.
Sharing his thoughts on the sub 200t design he said, “We needed to bring DOXA on the wrists. This design isn’t for the divers but for the desk divers. The main goal was to take the brand outside of the museum and be accessible to the consumers.”
The Indian watch collector’s community loves DOXA, as a brand and the watch with the orange dial with the beads of rice bracelet. From sub 600T fans to the carbon Aqua Lung US, there are several favorites. In fact, they are all set to release a new limited edition timepiece from the archives in June of next year. A little clue what the new watch is all about –
What was DOXA known for in the USA and United Kingdom? Time to solve another mystery…