BY DHANANJAY PATHAK

With some of the big names in the watch industry withdrawing from Baselworld, these are indeed times of crisis for the world’s biggest watch event. One of the major setbacks for the show came after the Swatch group announced its departure from Baselworld following the 2018 event. With the likes of Omega, Longines, Tissot, etc. to name a few out of the scene, Baselworld 2019 which just got over, was a much smaller show and today we once again have a mixed bag of news information related to the show which involves two major participants i.e. Breitling and Tudor.

Let’s start with the bad news. In spite of having a relatively successful run at Baselworld 2019, watch major Breitling has recently announced that it would not be exhibiting at the Baselworld 2020 fair and would rather focus on the brand’s upcoming developments and product launches through its own Summit programme. In a press release, the brand mentioned that the major reason behind it pulling out from the grand event is its timing which would going forward take place during the end of April, followed by the SIHH event and thus cannot be reconciled with their scheduling. Commenting on the brand’s decision George Kern, the CEO of Breitling said that “We will decide whether we will return to Baselworld from 2021 onward at a later date, and this will depend on the timing of the event and the possibility of holding the Breitling Summit “. While George Kern’s statement does give a glimmer of hope for the brands association with Baselworld in the future, for now, it is a certain goodbye.

Now onto some good news. In yet another press release the Baselworld’s management has stated that Tudor, the sister concern of Rolex has decided that it would have a complete booth to itself in Hall 1.0 at Baselworld 2020. This move would not only give an opportunity to display its products exclusively in a separate space, but it would also enable Rolex to expand its booth by taking over the area which Tudor would be vacating. This is indeed positive news as it would help instill people’s confidence in the Baselworld event which has seen some tough time recently.