Philadelphia-based pre-owned luxury timepiece platform WatchBox announced today that it’s partnered with Swiss watch retailer Les Ambassadeurs.
The multibrand luxury watch retailer, which has a total of five boutiques in Switzerland, will be an authorized WatchBox dealer that offers services and consultations for pre-owned watch trading and buying—and access to browse and purchase from WatchBox’s inventory of certified pre-owned watches.
It’s the first time a major luxury Swiss watch retailer has formalized a program to retail, buy, and trade pre-owned timepieces.
Les Ambassadeurs’ WatchBox initiative will begin in early May at the company’s locations in Zurich, Geneva, Lucerne, and Lugano. And WatchBox’s inventory will soon be displayed on the Swiss retailer’s website, lesambassadeurs.ch in a section called WatchBox Digital Corner, as well as through interactive digital screens inside Les Ambassadeurs’ four participating boutiques.
“We are thrilled to enter into this innovative partnership with WatchBox,” said Joachim Ziegler, chief executive officer of Les Ambassadeurs, in a statement. “It was very important for us to not just be a first mover in Switzerland in the pre-owned market, but also to offer an unparalleled service for our clients.”
WatchBox considers the partnership with Les Ambassadeurs “a strategic investment in the growth of the category, uniting the primary and secondary watch markets at their highest levels; an in-store presence with incredible digital support; and a customer-first mindset built upon trust, transparency, and education,” according to the same statement.
Amanda Ellison, WatchBox’s global president and chief operating officer, said in the statement that the larger vision for WatchBox “is to create a truly connected global marketplace, instituting a standard of excellence for both product and service within the pre-owned category.”
She added, “By bringing WatchBox to a global stage, we can offer a broader inventory to a greater network of consumers, while hiring and partnering with the most talented traders and retailers in the industry, and achieving economies of scale. We are delighted to forge ahead with Les Ambassadeurs as a strong, forward-thinking partner.”
WatchBox has showrooms and trading floors in the United States, Hong Kong, South Africa, and Neuchâtel, Switzerland. The company formally launched an authorized dealer network in the United States in December 2018 with California-based Hing Wa Lee Jewelers.
As the pre-owned watch category continues to gain steam, opportunity for further growth seems abundant. Financial consultancy Kepler Cheuvreux estimates the current global market for pre-owned watches alone to be worth upwards of $15 billion annually.
Top: Les Ambassadeurs’ boutique in Zurich (all photos courtesy of WatchBox)