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Success for BaselWorld 2013
Success for BaselWorld 2013

BaselWorld sets new visitor record

Following eight days of heightened activity, the redesigned BaselWorld ended on a high with organisers reporting a 17 per cent increase in visitor numbers from the previous year. 
The world’s largest watch and jewellery fair – which concluded Thursday 2 May – had a record 122,000 visitors from 100 countries. More than 1,460 exhibitors from 40 countries also participated in this year’s event.

Among the visitors were a number of Australian suppliers searching for the latest watches and jewellery items to bring back home. Many of those contacted by Jeweller expressed praise for the new CHF430 million (A$443m) hall redevelopment as well as the wide product offering on show.

GDL Accessories national sales manager Martin Johnson believed the fair’s redesign was proof that the industry was in a very strong position globally.

GDL supplies a range of luxury brand watches to the local market including Tommy Hilfiger, Kenneth Cole and Lacoste. Johnson said a highlight of the show was the new product releases from Movado Group and Geneva Watch Group, which had a strong emphasis on rose gold and chronograph-style watches.    

Citizen
Citizen
According to Designa Accessories head of brand Olivia Bramble, updates to exhibitor stands and locations gave the fair a “rejuvenated feel”. Designa Accessories locally distributes a number of watch brands, including Guess and GC Watches.

“In the Global Watch Brand hall, there were many new exhibitors and each brand was able to represent their current positioning statement through the new stand designs,” Bramble explained. 

Rod Willment, sales and marketing manager for Citizen Watches Australia, said that the quality of branding and product at BaselWorld never ceased to amaze him. 

“This year was no different, with Swiss companies relying on heritage and Japanese brands on technology.”

According to Time Essentials managing director John Papaioannou, the halls had a visibly upbeat atmosphere. 

“There were noticeably more people at the fair, compared to the last few years and the vibe was more like it had been in the years before the GFC.

“There were more journalists from Australia than in previous years and our meetings with them were another recognition of the work we are doing in Australia, particularly with the Bulova brand.” Time Essentials supplies a range of watch brands including Bulova, Fiorelli, Police and Jag.

Bulova "Diamonds" collection
Bulova "Diamonds" collection
New products revealed
As expected from the world’s largest watch and jewellery show, product launches were aplenty – and brands were using new stand designs to show off the pieces. 

Papaioannou said the highlight for Time Essentials was the new Bulova stand and the expansion of its “Diamonds” collection. The new watches are expected to be available in Australia later this year. 

Citizen also had a newly-designed booth, which featured a special lighting installation that was said to reflect the company’s innovative light-powered Eco-Drive watch models. Eco-Drive technology uses any light source to power the watch via disguised solar cells. 

Seiko Australia group sales manager Brett Neill said the watch brand used the fair as an opportunity to showcase the technological advancements in its Astron collection. The Astron GPS Solar is reportedly the only watch in the world to adjust to all 39 time zones. 

Edox
Edox
“Once a day Seiko Astron receives the time signal automatically, and on demand, connects to four or more of the GPS satellites that orbit the earth. It then knows your position and automatically allocates the correct time with atomic clock precision,” Neill added. 

Lion Brands supplies a range of watch brands from Switzerland and Italy, including Edox, Alfex and Underwood. Its managing director Graeme Goldman said that among the many highlights of the fair, was the launch of the new Edox Chronorally watches and the four new brands that it secured for local distribution. He said two of the brands were already distributed in Australia, while the others would most likely launch after July this year.  

Furthermore, Stat Australia Imports managing director Stefan Thomaschuetz said the highlight of the fair was the new collections from Jacques Lemans Miami. Thomaschuetz added that the supplier planned to introduce some of the brand’s new slim classic watches to the local market. 

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