The Luxury Watch Business in 2024

The dealers Silas Walton and Austen Chu discuss their predictions for 2024, including more stability in the market and collectors who buy for passion over profit.

What will 2024 mean to the luxury watch business?

On a video call last month arranged by The Times, some best guesses were offered by two well-known resale dealers: Silas Walton, founder and chief executive of A Collected Man (A.C.M.), a company in London that specializes in rare pieces by independent makers, and Austen Chu, founder and chief executive of Wristcheck, a consignment platform headquartered in Hong Kong that emphasizes popular steel sport models.

Mr. Walton and Mr. Chu met in person for the first time in August in Geneva, where they were attending a series of watch events, but they both said they had admired each other from afar for years. “During the closing part, we basically spent the whole time chatting,” Mr. Chu said from his office in Hong Kong’s Central district.

Although A Collected Man and Wristcheck both deal with pre-owned timepieces, the businesses target different market segments, resulting in contrasting sales volumes. “There is an extent to which Austen and I are asymmetric,” said Mr. Walton, who joined the call from his home in central London. “We might list four or five watches a week,” while he estimated that Wristcheck probably lists four or five watches an hour. (Mr. Chu said it was more like three to five a day.)

SOURCE: New York Times

Silas Walton, founder and chief executive of A Collected Man.A Collected Man

Both men, however, lamented what Mr. Walton called the “frothy waters” that have roiled the secondhand watch business since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

“I know a lot of people who went bankrupt in the secondary space in the past two years because they bought too much,” Mr. Chu said.

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