Retail

Vacheron Constantin Selling Limited Edition Watch Online Only

Shopping for a Vacheron Constantin luxury watch just got easier. Now, all you need is $45,000 and an internet connection. The company announced that it will be selling its latest collection online for the first time in its 262-year history, with the Richemont-owned brand trying to attract younger customers.

Internet Retailer reported that the Geneva-based company designed a limited edition of 36 Crones de Vache 1955 timepieces with New York-based watch news website Hodinkee, and the $45,000 watches will only be available on Hodinkee.com. The design has a more “youthful” look and is available in stainless steel for the first time, said Ben Clymer, Hodinkee’s founder.

“The steel case is something that is becoming very desirable to readers of Hodinkee,” he said. “It also brings the price down to below $50,000, making it slightly more approachable.”

Vacheron Constantin is one of Richemont’s most expensive brands, with products including a $150,000 platinum chronograph and the world’s most intricate mechanical pocket watch.

This is the first such collaboration for the watchmaker, said Vincent Brun, president of Vacheron Constantin in North America. “We wanted to make this digital step in order to increase brand exposure in the world and reach out to watch lovers we did not necessarily speak to until now.”

Swiss watch exports dropped the most in seven years in 2016, with high-end timepieces going unsold in Hong Kong, which is the industry’s largest market. A Deloitte survey in September showed that Swiss watch executives are planning to expand more into eCommerce for the first time in an attempt to reach a younger clientele that is less interested in wearing watches.

Richemont made its online debut in November and hired an executive from Google Inc. to bolster its digital push. Its shares have risen 10 percent this year.

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