The proceeds of IWC’s charity auction of a unique platinum watch in November have helped a school in Cambodia open two new classrooms and a mobile library service.
A winning bid of CHF 173,000 (£118,907) for the IWC Big Pilot’s Watch Perpetual Calendar Edition ‘Le Petit Prince’ in platinum went in full to the expansion of a school in Cambodia, in association with the Antoine de Saint-Exupery Youth Foundation and Sipar.
Olivier d’Agay, great-nephew of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry and Director Saint-Exupéry – d’Agay Estate, said: “Without the support of strong partners like IWC Schaffhausen we could not possibly fulfil our mission. We liaise closely with Sipar, a non-governmental organization that has been working to combat illiteracy in Cambodia for the past 22 years and supports a wide range of school- and education-r elated initiatives here on the ground.”
Two school buildings have been built at in Hun Sen Roluos Primary School, in Roluos, Cambodia, as well as the introduction of a mobile library service which will also help combat illiteracy in the country by giving access to books in remote villages in the area.
Georges Kern, chief executive officer of IWC, said: “The Cambodian education system is short of teachers and specialist staff because the generation of thirty-to-forty-year-olds is virtually non-existent. We take our social responsibility very seriously and believe that every human being is entitled to an education. We are especially grateful for this opportunity to contribute to the education of the youngest generation with the school and mobile library.”
The IWC Big Pilot’s Watch Perpetual Calendar Edition ‘Le Petit Prince’ in platinum was a ‘piece unique’ reserved for the charity auction at Sotheby’s Geneva while a limited edition in gold went on sale alongside Pilot’s Watch Mark XVII Edition Le Petit Prince in stainless steel with a percentage of the proceeds of both also going to the Antoine de Saint-Exupéry Youth Foundation
WatchPro says: “It’s easy to become cynical about the sheer number of charity-led initiatives within the watch industry, or any other industry for that matter. But it’s difficult not to be moved by the fact that the sale of one, albeit exquisite, watch has covered a large percentage of the cost of offering thousands of children a quality education and has given a forgotten older generation the chance to learn to read and write. Certainly some wealthy collector now has a unique and beautiful platinum timepiece to add to their collection but instead of the proceeds being adding to a balance sheet they will continue to make a daily difference to the lives of thousands of families over the coming years.”