Rolex took the business world by surprise on 24 August when the Swiss luxury watchmaker announced that it has agreed to acquire international watch and jewellery retailer Bucherer.
The two historic brands have been working closely together for more than 90 years.
In a statement acknowledging the long-standing relationship, Rolex said that Bucherer, which is one of the world’s largest watch retailers, will continue to maintain its independent identity and name.
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In its statement, Rolex underlined that the decision to buy the retailer emerged after its third-generation owner, Jörg Bucherer, revealed that he will sell his company’s business in the absence of direct descendants.
“This move reflects the Geneva-based brand’s desire to perpetuate the success of Bucherer and preserve the close partnership ties that have linked both companies since 1924,” the watchmaker noted in its statement.
Rolex notes that Bucherer is an internationally renowned multi-brand retailer, with stores located in Switzerland, Austria, Denmark, England, France, Germany, and the US.
Bucherer recently re-opened the TimeDome boutique in The Forum Shops At Caesars, Las Vegas. It is the largest watch retail store in North America.
According to Rolex, 53 of Bucherer’s sales outlets distribute the Rolex brand and 48 distribute the Tudor brand — which is also owned by Rolex.
Bucherer also serves as an official after-sales service centre for both Rolex and Tudor.
As regards other official retailers in Rolex’s sales network, the company insisted that its “fruitful collaboration” with them will “remain unchanged.”
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Bucherer will continue functioning independently
Bucherer was founded in 1888, when Carl-Friedrich Bucherer opened the first specialist watch and jewellery store in Lucerne with his wife, Luise.
In its statement, Rolex said that it is “convinced that this acquisition is the best solution not only for its own brands but also for all the watch and jewellery partner brands, as well as for all the employees of the Bucherer group.”
As part of the decision, Bucherer will retain its name and continue to operate independently.
“The Group’s management team will remain unchanged,” Rolex underlined.
As such, Jörg Bucherer, who Rolex said is “the last person still in activity to have known and worked with” the Rolex founder Hans Wilsdorf, will remain the honorary president of the Bucherer group.
The integration will become effective once the Swiss competition authorities approve the takeover.
This story first appeared on Prestige Online Hong Kong