What is actually happening to SIHH 2016?

By Harlan Chapman-Green

There’s been a lot of talk recently about a big change at SIHH 2016, the other watch show that gets a lot of attention before Baselworld steals the show a few months later. SIHH is run by the Richemont Group and is used to show off the creations of the watch brands within that group. Here’s the list of all the usual companies we see there:

  • A. Lange & Söhne
  • Audemars Piguet
  • Baume & Mercier
  • Cartier
  • Greubel Forsey
  • International Watch Co (IWC)
  • Jaeger-LeCoultre
  • Montblanc
  • Piaget
  • Parmigiani Fleurier
  • Ralph Lauren
  • Richard Mille
  • Roger Dubuis
  • Officine Panerai
  • Van Cleef & Arpels
  • Vacheron Constantin

So, while not as spread over the industry as Baselworld is, there’s always going to be a good collection of watches to take a look at and report on. Two of the highest level watches, Vacheron Constantin and A.Lange & Söhne help to make it a truly amazing visit to anyone going, there’s a lot to see and a lot of watches to cover, plus being set in the wonderful city of Geneva, those coming from afar will have a wonderful time. You may have noticed imposters in that list, both Audemars Piguet and Greubel Forsey aren’t actually members of the Richemont Group, neither are Parmigiani Fleurier or Richard Mille. So what are they doing there? Well, Audemars Piguet’s presence will draw a big crowd to the show, which is what they need as SIHH is primarily a show for brands to show their pieces to retailers. SIHH has had non Richemont Group brands attending before, and this time is no exception with 9 new independent brands coming in to show their very exclusive watches. Here is the nine new exhibitors:

  • Christophe Claret
  • De Bethune
  • Moser & Cie
  • Hautlence
  • HYT
  • Kari Voutilainen
  • Laurent Ferrier
  • MB&F
  • Urwerk

They replace the Ralph Lauren area with the Carré des Horlogers, the square of watchmakers is being advertised as a sort of exhibition within the exhibition itself. Previously these companies could show their watches at the same time, but they’d be in a hotel nearby to the venue whereas now they are officially allowed to show their work, getting SIHH even more visitors and, therefore, more media attention for the show and the exhibitors. It is overall a better idea to take these brands under their wing for the show rather than let them advertise elsewhere as there’s a lot of very important people in the industry who come along to visit specifically the independent brands. Hopefully, this influx of new companies in the show will attract the attention needed to recover the watch industry from its slump which was caused by the slowing down of markets such as Russia and China.

For more info, please visit sihh.org

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A keen bass guitar player, Harlan enjoys all the perks modern watchmaking technologies the industry has to offer. Although you might catch him sampling Omegas or the Rolex, Harlan loves all things Haute Horology, with his three favourite brands being Breguet, A.Lange & Söhne and Vacheron Constantin. He hopes to study timekeeping more in depth someday and will never be able to thank his father enough for introducing him to the industry. Read his articles here.