GC talks to Timevallee CEO Michael Guenoun
How has the digital universe impacted the traditional channels of retail? What are your thoughts on this physical shift?
The digital world has definitely been complementary to the brick-and-mortar’s shopping experience – it allows retailers another channel to express their brand and connect with clients who are increasingly demanding an omnichannel & seamless journey across touchpoints, shattering the borders between the physical and the digital world.
With a new generation of luxury consumers entering the market, how does this impact the way you do business in order to reach this new audience?
The various trends that we are witnessing in the luxury market inspired us to design our boutique in the most client centric and interactive approach that the new generation of luxury customers are able to relate to. This is evident from the moment you are exposed to the boutique in Hamad International Airport that features our impressive 3D screen, to the state-of-the art boutique design and definitely the interactive services and client experiences offered our watch experts in the boutique
What plans do you have to expand the brand in terms of geographic reach?
The luxury market in the region is developing fast and is presenting a lot of potential. Our strategy is to remain exclusive & selective when it comes to expanding our footprint, in order to continue to respect the brand equity, the current distribution and most importantly the needs of our clients.
TimeVallée recently opened its first Middle East flagship boutique in Qatar Duty Free. How is this new two-story multi-brand boutique pushing the boundaries for the watch-buying experience?
TimeVallee is not a typical multi-brand concept, it is designed to guide watch lovers and beyond to learn, browse and experience the watchmaking world. Through our innovative design, we ensure the Maisons are able to express their watchmaking heritage while combining it contemporary luxury elements, offering clients the most seamless shopping experience in the watchmaking world
Which brands can consumers expect to find?
Out of the many prestigious watch Maisons in the TimeVallee portfolio, clients can find Baume et Mercier, Bell and Ross, Cartier, Hublot, IWC, Jaeger LeCoultre, Panerai, Piaget, Roger Dubuis, Tag Heuer and the first Watchfinder – pre-owned watch leader – in the region, in the newly opened boutique in Hamad International Airport, Doha
What growth trends have you noticed in airport retail?
Travel Retail has gained momentum again, this can be seen with the multiple developments and opening we are witnessing worldwide – one of which is the impressive new Terminal in Hamad International Airport where we see the biggest luxury Maisons bringing their newest concepts to life
The renowned Watchfinder runs the pre-owned watches lounge. Are you seeing an uptick in the demand for pre-owned watches?
We made sure to bring to our concept the pre-owned watches lounge by Watchfinder to cater for our clients who have shown an increasing interest in limited and exclusive pieces beyond what can be offered in the market. This lounge will not only offer clients the opportunity to browse Watchfinder’s pre-owned assortment, but will also offer various services to watch collectors.
What should consumers keep in mind when buying pre-owned?
Clients should always make sure authentication documents and certificates are included when buying pre-owned. We wanted to cater to our clients’ needs while ensuring the highest service levels, which is what Watchfinder perfectly offers in the pre-owned watches lounge in TimeVallee
How does the brand execute its client-centric approach in its omnichannel journey?
Our omnichannel strategy is designed keeping the clients’ needs at the center of everything we do. Our interactive boutique experiences were thought through by combining innovative phygital luxury with personalized services, shoppers can visit the discovery counter, with its state-of-the-art digital technology to explore best-sellers, latest pieces, limited-edition and Maison collections.