U.S. watch industry aids victims of Sept. 11 attacks

Dozens of U.S. watch companies are donating support to relief efforts following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on America.

More than 50 watch brands sold in the United States at press time had joined in an industry-wide project called “A Time to Aid” to raise money for the American Red Cross’s NY & DC Explosion Relief Fund, says organizer Mitchell Caplan, president of Daniel Mink of Switzerland (U.S.). The project also enlists the help of the trade press and watch retailers.

“Other than giving blood, I wanted a way to help with as big an impact as possible,” Caplan tells JCK. He has attempted to get “every jewelry and watch trade, and consumer publication to donate space for full page ads [promoting the project], and to contact every watch company for donations for the cause.”

In addition to contributions from watch companies, magazine ads-running in the December and January issues of a dozen magazines-will urge readers to send checks payable to the American Red Cross c/o “A Time To Aid” and mail them to P.O. Box 201, Allenhurst, N.J. 07711. The project can also be contacted at (732) 663-9550 (ext. 102).

“This is an excellent cause for the industry to get together on to support the families affected by the heinous actions of September 11,” he said. Contact Mitchell Caplan at mitchc@danielmink.com.

Rolex Watch of Geneva, Switzerland has announced that it will contribute $3 million to relief efforts, including the “9/11 Neediest Fund,” administered by The New York Times, and the American Red Cross of Greater New York. Rolex U.S.A. has its offices in New York.

The Swatch Group, the world’s largest watchmaker, also planned to donate proceeds from one-day of watch sales in October in its 33 Swatch stores in the United States to the “New York Police & Fire Widows & Children’s Benefit Fund,” established in 1985 by baseball Hall of Famer Rusty Staub. Ads will alert consumers in advance of the event.