Ramzi Nael, Brand Director-India, Middle-East & Africa, A. Lange & Söhne speaks about the companies plans about the profile of its patrons in India, why it never has a brand ambassador and what’s in store for the Indian market. Excerpts from the conversation:
How has the journey been? Where does India stand in your global outlook?
We entered the market with high hopes eight years ago and they were, without a doubt, fulfilled. We’re currently in four cities—Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, and Bengaluru—with a rapidly growing clientele. The Indian market, characterised by a refined watch culture, plays an important role for us. There are some challenges but it’s an adaptive phase.
Does the brand launch its watch models in India simultaneously as the rest of the world?
We try our best to coordinate the launches around the world, yet due to production capacities, we do face some challenges in doing so. But, we always try to satisfy our clientele in the region.
What does an Indian consumer look for in a Lange watch?
Some of the most sought-after features are the three-quarter plate of untreated German silver, the hand-engraved balance cock with its whiplash precision index adjuster and the end stones rimmed in screwed gold chatons.
Any plan to create something exclusively for India?
Thanks to a universally understood brand message, we’ve captured the attention and loyalty of individuals here. Therefore, there is no need for region-specific models. We do offer personalisation services such as hand-engraving and through certain movement parts.
Is the PAN card rule affecting sales for the brand in India?
It’s a new approach that people will have to get used to. It will be beneficial in the long run both for the luxury industry as well as the local economy.
Lange has never associated itself with brand ambassadors. Why?
For us, watch stands for itself and every owner of our watches is an ambassador. We prefer to build close personal relationships with aficionados.
What’s in store?
We plan to strengthen our presence but not by opening at multiple spaces. The decision to open a standalone boutique will be taken at the right time looking at retail spaces in Mumbai and Delhi.