WATCHPRO ORIGINALS: Pre-owned giant says Rolex market could be transformed by Pandemic


Paul Altieri turned his passion for Rolex into a business trading its watches to the tune of tens of millions of dollars every year.

Bob’s Watches, based in Southern California, brought transparency to the buying and selling prices of pre-owned luxury watches with its online trading and auction platform, and has seen activity rise during the lock down.


The crisis has cooled prices by 10-20% for the hottest Rolex watches, he says, but expects them to rebound to pre-pandemic levels because supply is just as tight today because of three months’ loss of production at Rolex.

“Now is a great time to buy,” he insists.

The virus could also increase pressure on Rolex to allow its authorised dealers to start selling online because, during lock down, that was the only way to satisfy the cravings of watch lovers.

And, even as stores reopen, social distancing measures may take the shine off the experience of spending time in the boutiques of authorised Rolex dealers.

Click on the video above to see the wide-ranging conversation about the evolution of the pre-owned luxury watch market and how it is helping to shape the future of retail for centuries-old Swiss watchmakers.

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  1. Interesting interview. Great to hear that their market remains strong.
    I am watching very closely to see how the luxury watch retail market evolves in the near term.

  2. Hmmmm, have we ever heard a company which is in the business of selling stuff tell people – don’t buy now, wait until later? No, it’s always “the best time to buy is NOW”….

    I truly appreciate his transparency and openness but there certainly is bias, naturally.


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