Boom! Baume Launches
The Richemont Group’s newest brand, Baume, launches today, aimed solidly at young watch consumers who care about more than luxury watchmaking.
“What makes this brand special is the fact that it is born from our awareness that we have to do something and stop ignoring what is happening in terms of the environment and all other elements related to the planet, and what we are leaving for our children,” says Marie Chassot, head of Baume. “We have this responsibility and we believe that a business can be a forceful thing as well. “In a way, the watches we are making are the vehicles to make a statement. It’s about time to do something and to make time for what matters. The whole purpose of this brand is to connect with the widest possible audience and to do something cool. We want to raise awareness of the issues of the planet – the oceans, biodiversity, forests.”
Baume watches are genderless, but instead come in two sizes, 35mm and 41mm.
“We use no animal-based or precious materials and unused components are recycled or re-used,” Chassot says. “Our interchangeable watchstraps are made from natural, up-cycled or recycled fabrics such as cork, cotton, linen, alcantara and recycled PET. Packaging is kept to a minimum: there is no secondary packaging and only FSC-certified paper and cardboard are used.”
Minimalist in design, there are two series, the Custom Timepiece Series and the Iconic Series. The price range of Baume watches is very reasonable, from $560 to $1,100, and The Custom Timepieces Series, in stainless steel, is completely customizable, using an on-line configurator with over 2,000 different choices so each timepiece can be unique.
“We wanted, in the configurator, to have the lowest prices possible,” Chassot details. “We only have one price for the simple quartz movement watch ($560) and a second price ($630) for the watches with a calendar or a moon phase.”
The Iconic Series is the top of the range, powered by automatic movements.
The plan is to develop the brand with limited series and collaborations with interesting partners to reinforce the message of Baume.
“We believe that through collaboration we can reach new people,” Chassot explains. “We can collaborate with NGOs and other organizations finding solutions, and also collaborate with other industries and sectors in order to connect the different communities and create the emotional link with the brand. The idea of these watches is based on recycling, for example, we can use the items used by athletes, like a skateboard (which can’t be recycled) and make them into watches. This has never been done before, and it gives us the opportunity to talk about the importance of recycling, and we can connect with the community.”
Initially, Baume will be focused on digital retailing, with customers placing orders on the Baume website (Baume ships to 83 countries in the world). Later in the roll out, Baume will add brick-and-mortar stores. “We will have some physical distribution, but in a very experiential way,” Chassot details. “We want to test this customer experience, because the Custom Series is personalizable, and we have to highlight this. It’s the backbone of the brand that you can customize it how you want.
“We are going to have an assortment in key retailers, in order for the customer to be able to try it on, and then have an iPad to drive the customer through the digital experience,” she continues. “There will only be a few points of sale, and we will implement this in the main cities where we will have activation.”
Baume watches are available now on Baumewatches.com.
“By accelerating change through innovation and collaboration, we will help to ask questions to aid generations to come,” Chassot concludes. “We are excited about forthcoming work with our partner Waste Free Oceans, an organization that collects plastic from oceans, rivers and beaches. Ocean plastic will be transformed into material that will enable us to create a modern, recycled, and recyclable product while helping us to do our part in cleaning the oceans.”
Baume is a fresh take on watches for a new generation, with a unique style and a great back story.