It’s been a big year for MGS distribution. Having been bought out from holding group Steerwell by Movado Group International (MGI) it has become part of a globally networked power player.
That suits commercial director Steve Brydon just fine. “It’s an exciting time for us – we have gone from being an independent distributor to a large international company.”
It has meant a change in job title for him – he was previously sales and marketing director – and it means he now reports to the US via Switzerland, making him something of an international figure in the watch world.
It’s all great news for a man who started out on the road as a Boss rep and it shows how far he has come in his 14 years in the trade, now heading up one of “the big four or five” groups.
Though he would never say it, it has made his presence in the UK watch world feel altogether more muscular and it is keeping him busy – he is now upping the brand count. Right now that means keeping a very close eye on the newest brands to issue from MGS – the embryonic Coach, set to launch in September; Ferrari, which is currently hitting shop floors; and Boss Orange, which has only had a year in the market. “They all need the right level of support from the start; you avoid a lot of problems that way.”
Steve credits his team for the successful running of the brands, saying that his favourite part of the job is the satisfaction he gets from watching staff develop – so far four reps have progressed to brand manager level and are making real careers for themselves.
But of course he is the steadying hand and MGI haven’t altered the way he runs things. After all, Steve has seen turnover lift by an impressive 166% in MGS’s five-year existence as a joint venture between Steerwell and Movado. MGI obviously got to see what was a very effective operation, so they bought it and Steve continues to run it.
Running the UK operation doesn’t mean less influence on the end product. He instigated the idea for Boss to trial a watch and cufflink set in the UK. It’s now a global success. He’s extended the line of thought and also trialled watch and fragrance sets. They too have been hugely successful and will get a wider roll out.
Steve Brydon of MGS was selected as a London Watch Show Power Player in the WatchPro Hot 100 2013 in association with The Company of Master Jewellers. To read a digital version of the book in full online, click here.