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JustinianIV

Swatch group fiasco question

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I would appreciate it if someone could update me on the whole controversy of Swatch Group restricting parts.  Perhaps there is no new developments, but last I checked they were told last year that they plan on slowly cutting off the sale of movements.  

I would like to know what this means for the ETA based watches outside the Swatch Group, like Tudor.  For example, 25 years from now my Black Bay ETA needs a new part.  What will Tudor do?  Will they be able to buy it from Swatch?  

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21 hours ago, JustinianIV said:

I would appreciate it if someone could update me on the whole controversy of Swatch Group restricting parts.  Perhaps there is no new developments, but last I checked they were told last year that they plan on slowly cutting off the sale of movements.  

I would like to know what this means for the ETA based watches outside the Swatch Group, like Tudor.  For example, 25 years from now my Black Bay ETA needs a new part.  What will Tudor do?  Will they be able to buy it from Swatch?  

Looking 25 years ahead is always difficult - they may still have to supply outside of the Swatch group but they could discontinue certain movements and reduce stocks of spare parts.

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My understanding is much like German car manufacturers they have realised theres lots of money to be made from servicing and aftercare on their products.

They wish to push small independants out in order to extort money for such services hence they aren't happy to supply parts.

Maybe the independant British watchmaker will be as rare as the parts are in the future?  

None of us has a crystal ball but I would think there will be some option in 25 years even if its an expensive one from the manifacturer.

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I would think the way technology is developing that in 2032, Swatches big question will be not "how do we limit supply" but rather "how do we stop people printing their own parts?"*

 

 

 

* Although people have been printing their own parts at office christmas parties for decades.

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Swatch restriction of parts was probably more to do with reducing outsourced service for their watches and cutting competition from non partner companies, from what I recall they stated at the time they would continue to supply certain partners I believe Tudor being one of them.

3 hours ago, Daveyboyz said:

My understanding is much like German car manufacturers they have realised theres lots of money to be made from servicing and aftercare on their products.

They wish to push small independants out in order to extort money for such services hence they aren't happy to supply parts.

Maybe the independant British watchmaker will be as rare as the parts are in the future?  

None of us has a crystal ball but I would think there will be some option in 25 years even if its an expensive one from the manifacturer.

Independent British watchmaker?

Christopher Ward use sellita or their own movements Bremont are moving towards producing their own.  Who are there British watchmakers?

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21 minutes ago, ZenArcade said:

Swatch restriction of parts was probably more to do with reducing outsourced service for their watches and cutting competition from non partner companies, from what I recall they stated at the time they would continue to supply certain partners I believe Tudor being one of them.

Independent British watchmaker?

Christopher Ward use sellita or their own movements Bremont are moving towards producing their own.  Who are there British watchmakers?

Robert Loomes

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Just now, ZenArcade said:

He uses old Smiths movements not ETA as far as I know.

Correct I also believe he makes some other more unique movements.

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29 minutes ago, PC-Magician said:

Correct I also believe he makes some other more unique movements.

Not aware of that, I know there was talk he had funding from the EU to expand the business but not aware he has actually started making anything.

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We can rest assured, Swatch's dominance of the market means that even if it stops supplying movements, it will find it difficult - virtually impossible - to stop supplying parts. 

Swatch has obligations under European and Swiss competition law to continue to supply parts due to their dominance. This holds true even when Swatch's obligation to supply movements ends. Furthermore, this continues to be true even in the unlikely event that Swatch no longer becomes dominant in the market for movements, as the lack of interorperability (switch-ability of parts) means that the market for ETA spare parts will be considered a market unto itself, and swatch is invariably dominant. If swatch refused to supply the market for spare parts, or refused to supply it at reasonable prices, it would be a "refusal to supply" by a dominant firm, which is in breach of EU Competition law - and swiss competition law which is modelled closely on, and tracks, its EU counterpart. 

(in the unlikely situation that someone is interested in spending a good few hours reading EU case law, the cases establishing the precedent are Hugin v Commission and Volvo v Veng)

 

Edited by Jeremy Fisher
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12 hours ago, Jeremy Fisher said:

We can rest assured, Swatch's dominance of the market means that even if it stops supplying movements, it will find it difficult - virtually impossible - to stop supplying parts. 

Swatch has obligations under European and Swiss competition law to continue to supply parts due to their dominance. This holds true even when Swatch's obligation to supply movements ends. Furthermore, this continues to be true even in the unlikely event that Swatch no longer becomes dominant in the market for movements, as the lack of interorperability (switch-ability of parts) means that the market for ETA spare parts will be considered a market unto itself, and swatch is invariably dominant. If swatch refused to supply the market for spare parts, or refused to supply it at reasonable prices, it would be a "refusal to supply" by a dominant firm, which is in breach of EU Competition law - and swiss competition law which is modelled closely on, and tracks, its EU counterpart. 

(in the unlikely situation that someone is interested in spending a good few hours reading EU case law, the cases establishing the precedent are Hugin v Commission and Volvo v Veng)

 

Thank you for the detailed response and reassurance.  It would kind of be near-sighted for Rolex (via Tudor) to sell so many ETA based watches if they knew that they would be blocked on spares down the road.  Again, thank you for saving me time in researching EU case law, though I do find it strangely interesting.

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