We Made It!
Tatler Hong Kong|January 2021
As we enter 2021, we look back on a troubled year for the watch industry. But things aren’t as bleak as you might think
Christian Barker

Last year wasn’t entirely bad, watch-wise. In fact, we saw some great new pieces released, a few of which I’ll call attention to below. Nonetheless, for most luxury watch producers, 2020 was an annus horribilis from the get-go.

Last January, watch companies were hit by plummeting demand from China’s consumers and tourists when the initial outbreak of Covid-19 began to cause borders to close. The 1.4 billion Chinese consumers the industry had banked on for two decades all but disappeared, almost overnight.

After the virus spread worldwide and air travel virtually ceased, sales to tourists, which normally account for about half of all watches sold, dried up. Large-scale events were banned, so the Watches & Wonders and Baselworld fairs in Switzerland were cancelled (permanently, in the case of the latter, with few mourning its passing).

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