Tracking the timepiece market can be complex and confusing. Enter the talented team at Modern Wrist to offer a concierge-level service for buying and selling luxury watches. We asked CEO Christopher Gravagna to share some insider intel on how to curate your collection.
What made you decide to launch Modern Wrist? Did you think there was a void in the market?
The concept for Modern Wrist was a collaboration of two companies with a similar vision: Create a true concierge experience for watch enthusiasts to buy, sell and trade luxury timepieces in a trusted environment, while creating a community of like-minded individuals to enjoy a multitude of benefits. The market has been flooded with competitors who are traditional e-commerce sites, so we recognized an opportunity to differentiate ourselves and provide a much higher and broader value proposition.
What will membership offer in terms of access and community?
Modern Wrist will give members access to all the key components of lifestyle and luxury, including curated events and dinners; community experiential events (two- to three-day resort experience); discounts with our luxury brand partners; investor and market analytics from industry experts; insights from leading innovators from a wide range of industries; as well as a focus on the watch industry, new watch drops (so you can be the first to get your hands on the world’s most sought-after timepieces and hard-to-find/one-of-a-kind pieces. Watches are getting more and more difficult to obtain.
Why do you think building a watch community is so important?
Community is a core value of Modern Wrist. We will build community by offering access to events, and our goal is to build a community of like-minded watch enthusiasts. Our clients love the feeling of exclusivity, connection and a sense of belonging.
What watch trends are you seeing this fall?
We see purple as the next color. You heard it here first! Dial colors have been such a hit; last season, you saw it with green and Tiffany Blue. In terms of investments, prices of timepieces went down 15% to 20% overall in summer 2022. According to Bloomberg, the secondhand market for luxury watches has been flooded in the last few months as a result of the crypto and market downturns. As with any market, there will always be slight corrections. We believe as we approach fall and head to the holiday season, clients will see enough stabilization and will be eager to buy again.
What are your recommendations for someone just starting a collection and how they should approach investing in watches that will hold their value?
We always tell clients, when starting a collection, go with the classics. It’s important to have the basics: stainless steel, black dial, blue dial. Versatility is also important. Start with a watch that goes with a suit one day and gym shorts the next day. Like most investments, diversification is important. We also recommend starting with the blue-chip brands—Rolex, Patek Philippe and Audemars Piguet. They will always be in demand and, as a result, will hold their value.
Are there any tools for members to track the watch market or their collection as investments?
It’s coming soon! We will be launching a quarterly watch market report, Our sales team will ensure that you get the right timepiece that best fits your needs and budget. When considering a trade, we treat your precious jewelry as if it was ours. We ensure that your timepiece is safe and secure, and that you get maximum value. We make this a simple process. ... Send us the watch details along with photos and our team of professionals will take it from there.
Modern Wrist can help coordinate repairs
How does Modern Wrist act as both a concierge and consultant when it comes to watches?
That’s where we truly shine and separate ourselves from the pack—our concierge level of service. We are there to establish a relationship with you, educate and guide you to ensure that you make the best decision.
What is next for Modern Wrist?
We are very excited for what the future holds. ... There will be a tour of small curated events around the country to help launch the brand, build awareness and start to develop a sense of community… basically giving watch enthusiasts a taste of what membership to Modern Wrist looks like.