John Robinson, managing director of Patek Philippe authorised dealer David M Robinson describes Patek Philippe and Rolex as the most trusted brands in the business.
“The key word is trust,” he tells WatchPro in our Big Interview to be published in October.
“We trust them implicitly, and I hope they trust us the same way. I have to take my hat off to the way both Rolex and Patek Philippe are run. Patek Philippe was not the same company 20 years ago that it is today. Mark Hearn and his team have done a sterling job. The investment they have made in the brand has been huge. It’s [success is] the reward for doing the right thing, for loyalty, for high standards and patience,” he adds.
Every authorised dealer tells WatchPro the same story. Patek Philippe demands high standards from its authorised dealers, and that requires investment in infrastructure, retail environments and training.
In return, Patek Philippe forges the strongest and most trusted partnerships in the industry, allowing its retailers to invest long term with confidence.
Patek Philippe customers benefit from building relationships with their authorised dealers, and the results also feed through into the some of strongest financial results in the British watch industry for both the brand and its partner retailers.
Rhone Products (UK) Limited, the trading name for Patek Philippe’s wholly-owned UK distributor, published its 2018-19 accounts this week for the year ending January 31 and show sales rising by 5% to a new record of £163 million. Operating profit rose by 28% to £22 million.
Compare that to Swatch Group, which also released its financial results this week. It notched almost identical sales of £160 million from a portfolio that includes Omega, Longines and Tissot; three brands that notched global sales last year of over CHF 5 billion while Patek Philippe’s world-wide sales were estimated at CHF 1.35 billion by investment bank Morgan Stanley.
Something is going seriously right for Patek Philippe in the UK, which is widely considered — although never officially confirmed — to be the largest market in the world for the brand. Bigger than either Hong Kong and the USA.