The Dreyfuss Group was bought in 2014 by Hong Kong-listed investment company Citychamp Watch & Jewellery Group, which also owns luxury watch brands Corum and Eterna. Almost two years later, WatchPro catches up with Tom Tope, group sales director for The Dreyfuss Group, who looks after Corum here in the UK. He tells us how Corum has been getting on since the acquisition.
WP: What was 2015 like for Corum?
Tope: Last year was very interesting. It was the first time that we attended Basel with Corum in our new role as UK distributor; in addition Corum launched within the renowned Wonder Room at Selfridges in the second half of the year.
WP: What has changed for the brand since becoming part of The Dreyfuss Group?
Tope: The Dreyfuss Group (TDG) is now part of City Champ Watches & Jewellery group whom also own Corum. TDG was asked to take over distribution for the UK at the end of 2014 which means that Corum now has representation in the UK.
WP: Which model has been a particular hit for Corum recently? / What can retailers expect to see from the brand at Baselworld?
Tope: The Bubble was re-launched at Basel 2015 and the two limited edition lines sold out at the fair! Due to the Bubble’s popularity Corum launched another 3 Limited Edition Op Art models in September which were once again very well received. I suspect that there will be yet more Bubbles to launch in Basel this year along with extensions to the Admirals Cup and Golden Bridge ranges, showcasing new dials and case finishes.
WP: What makes Corum a unique proposition for watch consumers?
Tope: Rene Bannwart, the Corum founder, was a lover of Beaux-Arts. As a man of culture, he spent his childhood in Basel, the city that helped him sow the passion for his art. Throughout his career Rene was singled out by his creations. When agreeing to set up Corum in 1955 with his uncle and cousin it was agreed that Rene would have full authority over all creative designs. Today Corum still follows Rene’s creative guidelines when designing watches and takes pride in being a distinctive and very creative Swiss watch brand.
WP: What are the major challenges for watch brands like Corum at the moment?
Tope: For the UK it would have to be ensuring that we can find the right retail partners with suitable adjacencies to sell the Corum story.