A good friend and fellow watch lover has recently brought this podcast to my attention... (Thanks by the way, great find!) Quite an interesting piece even though there are some points that I am not in agreement with, it describes pretty accurately the recent evolution of the relationship between manufacturers and prominent collectors/customers in recent years.
Wall Street Journal...
However, there are several statements that I can not agree with, although his term "Blue Chip Watch" in very interesting indeed. For instance, not "all" Pateks are a good buy, and I would not put "BlancPain" amongst the blue chip description when it is clearly closer to a junk bond. Apart from BlancPain being a "sinking ship" its resale value is among the very worse in the market.
There is also... hmmm I would say a despective tone as to the "recent" love affair between collectors and manufacturers. Describing how collectors now have to mingle (kiss ass...) in order to get certain pieces, how they get invited to the factories and events etc... Not untrue, however the tone this is being told almost sounds like; "I am a journalist and used to be in demand but now they invite "others" to all the cool parties... and it's all Internet's fault!" Hmmm... could it be that watch journalism has become so submissive to the point of obsolescence that people start looking in other places? If one offers lots of praise and little critique you will eventually be replaced by "others" that in the end contribute to improving a product. Could it be that manufacturers are listening to us? I am almost in tears... nah, wake up! The truth is simpler than that. Manufacturers have discovered that it's by far more glamorous/lucrative to network at diners or cocktails with people that can afford to buy their mega-ultra-expensive watches than journalists/reporters that say yes to everything and only care about the amount of publicity they will be able to sell. With journalists being more and more arrogant, brands are shifting funds for promotion to their end clients or customers. As a result of doing this there are more grateful people and more "attentive" journalists next time there is a venue. In order to attract journalists to events, brands have had to go to incredible lengths only to make them appear, and that after having all expenses paid! There are some journalists out there that sure know and love their trade, but there many more out there that report and write on the subject yet don't even like watches. Believe me, I know quite a few.