World’s Largest Timepiece Event Opens in Hong Kong

The world’s largest watch-and-clock trade event, the HKTDC Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair, opened today, celebrating its 30th anniversary with a wide range of major brands and 700 exhibitors from 12 countries and regions taking part.

The fair, which runs until 11 September at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC), has organised 71 buying missions, including 2,859 buyers from 64 countries and regions.

The fair, organised by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC), the Hong Kong Watch Manufacturers Association Ltd and the Federation of Hong Kong Watch Trades and Industries Ltd, features group pavilions from the Chinese mainland, South Korea and Taiwan, along with special zones for name-brand and limited-edition timepieces.

Special Zones

Brand Name Gallery welcomes 110 brands from around the world – a 20 per cent increase over last year. Brands participating include Cosmopolitan, EDWIN, ELLETIME Collections, FIYTA, Gemtique, Levi’s, Temporis and Alexis Garin, one of the few Swiss watchmakers still crafting skeleton watches by hand. In addition, Hong Kong’s Christie Wo is launching Chouette Teslar®, a new health-watch collection, and Japanese brand EDWIN is showcasing its Dragon & Phoenix limited-edition watches. Neolog of Germany is displaying a watch that won the 2010 Red Dot Design Award, while Hong Kong’s Romago features its patented “45o auto-active light-on” design watch.

Brand Name Gallery will be open to the public (12 and over) on the fair’s final day (11 September), giving exhibitors direct market feedback through sales promotions and publicity events.

The World Brand Piazza, sponsored by Prince Jewellery & Watch Company, features rare timepieces from 12 of the world’s top brands: A. Lange & Söhne, Audemars Piguet, Blancpain, Breguet, Chopard, Franck Muller, IWC, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Omega, Panerai, Piaget and Vacheron Constantin. Vacheron Constantin is showcasing its HK$76.8 million diamond watch. In addition, the world’s first cell phone with a tourbillion is also on display. Created by Celsius X VI II, it retails for HK$2.8 million.

The Pageant of Eternity zone returns with a selection of high-quality complete watches from such exhibitors as Comtech, Renley and Silcon.

The fair also presents more than 25 special activities, including cocktail receptions, conferences, public seminars and watch fashion shows.

Later today, the Hong Kong International Watch Forum welcomes representatives from watch associations around the world to discuss the latest developments in the global watch industry. Tomorrow, the Asian Watch Conference will feature Jason Martin, designer from “new” Design.

Two public sessions will be held on 11 September, one by Christie Wo on the crossover between watches and fashion, the other by Simon Shia, on the “finest watches to watch.” The winning pieces of the 28th Hong Kong Watch & Clock Design Competition are also being featured in the Hall 1C Concourse throughout the fair.

The latest statistics show that Hong Kong is the world’s top import market for Swiss watch products. From January to July, imports from Switzerland totalled HK$19.3 billion, a 47 per cent increase over the same period last year. Watch and clock exports in the first seven months of 2011 reached HK$36.4 billion, up 24 per cent, year-on-year.

Admission Details

7-10 September: entry limited to trade visitors 18 and above (free admission)

11 September: Brand Name Gallery opens to public visitors 12 and over (free admission); some exhibitors will open for retail