“One of the biggest trends of the year is that women are buying more men’s watches,” says Brian Duffy, chief executive of The Watches of Switzerland Group, which is compiling trend data from sales across its international network of stores.
This is not simply a short term fashion, but a direction of travel that every watchmaker should recognise. “The industry has to look at not having a gender classification on watches. This is not really relevant in today’s market, in my personal opinion. I can well imagine that this is being considered by the wider watch industry,” Mr Duffy insists.
“It is a unisex world these days in every respect. I think it is an issue of respect that we don’t tell people what type of watch they should wear from a gender standpoint. The industry should look at that,” he adds.
Part of the reason for women buying more watches classified as men’s is the soaring demand for mechanical watches.
“We are seeing massive changes are in the women’s market. The average price point for women’s watches is rising and there is a huge shift from quartz to mechanical watches,” Mr Duffy reveals.
Panerai’s Luminor Due (pictured top), which launched this year with a 38mm case, is a perfect example of unisex styling.