A fresh London-based entrant into the market for pre-owned luxury watches is promising to take all the risk of fakes and other mislabelling from the buying process.
Verado is the brainchild of CEO Claudio de Giovanni, and is backed by investors including Chris Fung, former CEO of Crussh Foods and Vishal Mehta, director of White Hope Holdings and Dimexon, a major player in the global diamond industry.
While some platforms like Chrono24 connect watch buyers and sellers without ever touching the watches that are bought and sold, Verado provides an additional verification service.
Before watches are listed on the site, Verado runs a check on each seller. Once an item is sold, the watch is sent to certified inspectors to check its condition, documentation and working parts before it is released.
Prices are generated using a proprietary algorithm that draws data from thousands of sources across the internet.
“This is the first time ever that a company has blended technology and human expertise to provide safeguards in this way,” Mr de Giovanni claims.
The platform is starting with luxury watches, but intends to add fine jewellery and gemstones.
Verado is playing in a market that some experts say is already worth over £5 billion, and has attracted significant interest from investors since Watchfinder was bought by Richemont group.
The Watchfinder/Richemont deal also lends legitimacy to a market that has long been held back by a lack of trust. “Fraud, counterfeits and skewed pricing models are rife in the space. This, and the fact that both buyers and sellers are forced to shop around dealer-to-dealer to get the best price, means their experience lacks the comfort and ease normally equated with high-value transactions. Verado sets out to combat these issues, pledging to protect everyone throughout their transaction,” says Mr de Giovanni.
“People want meaningful experiences and guaranteed authenticity when they buy second-hand luxury products, but this need has been vastly overlooked until now. Technology can improve user experience, whilst also eradicating fraud and unfair valuations. We’re deeply dedicated to this cause, and will continue to develop tools and processes that make it a reality,” he adds.