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CULTURE

Dubai Watch Week 2019 will be “bigger and better”

Words by Rob Chilton

Mohammad Abdulmagied Seddiqi, CCO of Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons speaks to EDGAR

Seddiqi spoke on the eve of this year's Dubai Watch Week about mistakes, limited editions and what Rolex will bring to the party.

"I’m excited about Dubai Watch Week. We learnt a lot from our mistakes in the first three editions. People missed it last year, so they are waiting for it eagerly, so are the brands. The layout will be much better, more space, better visibility, hopefully more media will come, more topics to discuss, more watches being launched."

"Dubai Watch Week is a platform for watch lovers and watch enthusiasts. It's an educational place that is provided to whoever would like to visit, with no cost. I’d say it’s difficult to find something for free in 2019. Dubai Watch Week provides detailed information and insights about the industry, with watch brand CEOs readily available within the campus."

"Our main objective is that Dubai Watch Week is a non-commercial exhibition. We mainly focus on educating consumers, and ourselves, about the watch industry, about the luxury industry in general because there are some topics in other industries as well."

The Rolex Submariner will feature at Dubai Watch Week

"Networking today, in any industry, is important. And in the watch industry, it is even more important because watchmakers share ideas of what is new. There are a lot of collaborations and internal communications between the watch industry so it's a good place for them to meet in a casual atmosphere."

"SIHH and Baselworld are 100 per cent commercial exhibitions. CEOs and watchmakers are busy selling their products, meeting clients, entertaining them, doing PR activities with regards to the product that they have and so on. In April when I was in Geneva, we met F.P. Journe, and he told us, "I can't wait to come to Dubai Watch Week because I just want to enjoy my time, meet my colleagues, discuss what's happening in the industry, and listen to them." So a great watchmaker, maybe today one of the best watchmakers in the 21st century, using Dubai Watch Week as a platform to meet all these great people in the industry shows we are working on the right track."

"We are producing a lot of limited edition watches for this year. I think we'll have seven launches this year. The theme is 2019, so most of the watches will be limited to 19 pieces, or related to the number 19. But no one knows about them, so I cannot tell you anything."

Mohammad Abdulmagied Seddiqi

"We've been working with a brand for the past four or five years to develop a movement specifically for Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons that will be launched during Dubai Watch Week. It will only be sold by us and is linked to that specific brand. We love to be pioneers, even though we don't brag about it or show off about it. But internally we know that we did it before anyone else. We already got the prototype, a working prototype, and we've been testing it."

"Rolex coming to Dubai Watch Week for the first time is an honour and a privilege. We are really excited. The partnership between Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons and Rolex goes back to 1956. It will add a lot of value to see Rolex here and will give us more credibility. We are working closely with the Rolex team to have the right range of vintage watches displayed during Dubai Watch Week, but it's not easy because we are trying to look in the archives for the histories of these watches."

"This year, we will start products from an entry level, with prices from AED 12,000. We have nothing above AED 100,000. We are targeting the young generation, generation X, generation Y, generation Z, generation whatever you want to call it, the whole alphabet. We are targeting people who appreciate watchmaking."

Registration is now open for Dubai Watch Week 2019, which runs November 20-24

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