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World’s largest Watch & Clock Fair opens next Tuesday

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, the 38th HKTDC Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair will be held from 3-7 September at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC). The world’s largest event of its kind, this year’s fair will feature some 830 exhibitors from 22 countries and regions, with Qatar offerings and Indonesian-branded products being showcased for the first time. The seventh Salon de TE runs concurrently with the Watch & Clock Fair and features a wide range of quality timepieces. “The watch and clock industry has risen to the challenges resulting from the ongoing Sino-US trade dispute and the slowdown in the global economy,” said HKTDC Deputy Executive Director Benjamin Chau. “For example, manufacturers have broadened their scope, launching watches with traditional sensibilities and excellent craftsmanship, increasing the attractiveness of their brands through crossover collaborations, and developing smart watches that employ the latest technologies and capabilities to ride the fast-growing trend for wearable technologies.” Mr Chau added that Hong Kong remains the world’s major exporters of watches and clocks, with total exports reaching HK$66.3 billion in 2018, up 1.7% over the previous year. “We have been seeing significant growth in business out of key emerging markets including the Philippines (+56.9%), Indonesia (+26.3%) and Thailand (+20%),” he said. Exquisite timepieces at Salon de TE Showcasing some 140 premium international watch brands and designer collections, the Salon de TE will comprise five thematic zones: World Brand Piazza, Chic & Trendy, Craft Treasure, Renaissance Moment and Wearable Tech. Sponsored by Prince Jewellery & Watch for the 10th consecutive year, the World Brand Piazza will present 13 renowned international brands, including Blancpain, Breguet, Chopard, CORUM, FRANCK MULLER, Glashütte Original, Jacob & Co., Jaquet Droz, Juvenia, PARMIGIANI FLEURIER, Piaget, SARCAR Genève and ZENITH. European brands demonstrate optimism in Asian market The Renaissance Moment zone at Salon de TE will continue to feature the Swiss Independent Watchmaking Pavilion, along with new participants such as Francéclat from France and Académie Horlogère des Créateurs Indépendants (AHCI) from Switzerland. AHCI members, who hold more than 20 Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève honours, will bring seven leading European brands from Switzerland, the UK and France to feature a diverse range of timepieces in Hong Kong. One of the participating brands, John-M Flaux, which has won various European awards, will showcase a clock inspired by automobiles. Playful watch with dual dial design German watch brand a’-TEX, which will exhibit at the Chic & Trendy zone, has always combined artistic elements with technological prowess. In 2019 the company will present its Scrollen watch where the dial is made with AISI 316I stainless steel and sapphire glass with a face-changing double background design, showcasing the brand’s playful and unique style. Swiss watch brand DAUMIER will present a limited-edition collection inspired by the Justice League’s Wonder Woman, with only 333 pieces available worldwide. The watch features a dial made with sapphire glass with three layers of anti-reflective coating, a leather strap and push-button hidden clasp. The watch showcases the brand’s fashion sense and provides a highly desirable item for lovers of the comic-book icon. At the Craft Treasure zone, you will find high-end functional mechanical watches and jewellery watches. Among them is the Harmony of Dragon and Phoenix Series from Hong Kong brand Memorigin, which combines classic oriental design with quality Western watchmaking skills to create timepieces that redefine good fortune and good taste. The Wearable Tech zone will present the MARQ™ Driver watch from American brand Garmin, the world’s only high-end modern watch with smart capabilities and 250 preset race tracks from around the globe, making it perfect for motor-racing lovers with a penchant for speed. Pageant of Eternity focuses on high-end OEM and ODM timepieces Aligned with the international market’s need for innovative designs, the Pageant of Eternity zone will return to the Watch & Clock Fair with about 160 exhibitors showcasing high-end complete watches from original equipment manufacturer (OEM) and original design manufacturer (ODM) companies. The fair will feature other thematic zones to facilitate buyers’ sourcing, including OEM Smart Watches, Complete Watches, Clocks, Machinery & Equipment, Packaging, Parts & Components, Trade Services and the hktdc.com Small Orders zone. Events to foster industry exchange, public day on 7 September Around 30 events will be organised during the fair period to help industry players connect and share market information. The Hong Kong International Watch Forum on 3 September will gather industry elites to examine new trends and future industry developments and challenges, while the Asian Watch Conference (4 September) will feature Jorge Martin, Head of Fashion Research at strategic market research company Euromonitor International, to share how digitalisation and connectivity are sparking an analogue reinvention. Emil Chan, Chairman, The Association of Cloud and Mobile Computing Professionals, will examine ABCD (artificial intelligence, blockchain, cloud and data) technology solutions for wearable devices, while Philip Wong, Vice-President (Technical) at the Movado Group, will discuss new trends for smart watches. Watch parades and product launches will feature celebrities including Patrick Kong, Bob Lam, Elaine Kong and Oscar Siu. Influencer Rick Kwan and Ming Watch Chief Editor Simon Shia will also attend. On the Public Day of the fair on Saturday, 7 September, Salon de TE will open free of charge to public visitors aged 12 or above. Visitors can enjoy a series of watch parades, the “Fashion x Watches” parade, watchmaking demos and lucky draws. The HKTDC will stage CENTRESTAGE, Asia’s biggest fashion showcase, concurrently at the HKCEC to showcase fashion brands and designer collections, providing more crossover business opportunities for exhibitors. Design competition to promote local creativity To raise design standards among Hong Kong watch brands and nurture budding local designers, the HKTDC Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair 2019 Organising Committee, together with the Hong Kong Watch Manufacturers Association Ltd and the Federation of Hong Kong Watch Trades & Industries Ltd, have co-organised the 36th Hong Kong Watch & Clock Competition in 2019. The competition was divided into two categories – the Open Group and Student Group – with the respective themes of “Fresh Start New Look” and “Abstract Wonder”. This year’s competition received about 130 submissions and the winning and final entries will be displayed at the Hall 1B concourse of the HKCEC throughout the Watch & Clock Fair to showcase the best of Hong Kong’s creativity to international buyers. e-Badge for exhibitors The HKTDC launched the e-Badge initiative at the Watch & Clock Fair last year and it met with a warm reception. This year the e-Badge has also been extended to exhibitors, and both buyers and exhibitors can get the environmentally friendly e-Badge from the HKTDC Marketplace mobile app after registering for the event. When entering the fairground, buyers can simply enable the Bluetooth function on their mobile device to obtain a “green tick” on the e-Badge and show it to staff for seamless fairground access. The mobile app’s e-Business Card function, meanwhile, allows buyers and exhibitors to exchange electronic business cards and contact information through QR codes, helping to strengthen business connections. Performance of Hong Kong's Exports of Watches and Clocks 2018 (Total value) YoY change Jan- July 2019 (Total value) YoY change HK$66.3 billion +1.7% HK$36.4 billion -2.6%