Raymond Weil has stepped away from distributor Swico after 37 years to set up a dedicated subsidiary for its UK wholesale market.
The Swiss watch brand will continue to work with Swico but its relationship has been converted from a distribution contract to a management contract. The changes are effective from this month.
UK subsidiary R. Weil Distribution UK will now handle the sales, marketing and distribution of Raymond Weil watches in the UK. Swico will continue to provide order fulfilment, logistical support and aftersales services.
R. Weil Distribution UK said that the goal of the operational change is to "bolster further the performance of Raymond Weil in the United Kingdom market in line with the exponential growth enjoyed in other markets".
It said it has plans to execute a hard-hitting highly visible marketing campaign incorporating advertising and point of sale, increase its shop-in-shop presence in UK retailers, and increase celebrity product placement and sponsorship within the music arena, including its existing relationships with the BRIT Awards and the Classic BRIT Awards
Raymond Weil president and chief executive Olivier Bernheim and his sons Elie Bernheim and Pierre Bernheim will head up R. Weil Distribution UK.
Olivier Bernheim said: “Swico has been instrumental in the success of our brand since its earliest beginnings in 1976 and over the past 37 years has ensured constant growth for us in this extremely important market.
"The Weil-Bernheim family and I would like to take this opportunity to thank Keith Sheppard, his co directors and team, personally for their help in establishing and developing Raymond Weil in the United Kingdom over so many years, and we look forward to our continued commitment to the brand under the new structure.”
Craig Leach, who has been working at Swico as Raymond Weil brand manager, will move with the watch brand and will now work for R. Weil Distribution UK as UK brand director. The sales team that have been working with the brand through Swico will also move across to R. Weil Distribution UK, continuing in their current roles.
Marcus Braybrook, who headed up PR for Raymond Weil through agency APR, will also move to the brand’s UK subsidiary where he said he will deliver a more "high octane" strategy for the watch brand.