Watchbox and Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons have forged a joint venture that will see the Philadelphia-based pre-owned watch specialist open its first physical store in Dubai.
More importantly, it is a sign that the once ostracized secondary market for luxury watches has been fully accepted by the most respected partners of the traditional Swiss watch industry.
Few authorized dealers in the world come with the pedigree of Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons, the Middle East’s biggest luxury watch retailer, and owner of the largest Rolex monobrand boutique in the world.
Established in 1950 when its home city of Dubai was little more than a fishing and pearl-diving village, the company now named Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons was responsible for bringing luxury watches to the Middle East. It now represents more than 60 luxury watch and jewellery brands at 50 locations in the United Arab Emirates.
Of the $1 billion’s worth of watches imported into the UAE every year, Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons will buy well over half.
Next week the company hosts Dubai Watch Week, which is fast developing into a watch event of international significance.
Watchbox is participating at Dubai Watch Week with a pop-up showroom and studio for producing online video. That pop-up will give way to a permanent store located in the Dubai International Financial Center, a district for banking and finance companies mixed with leisure and retail.
“This partnership signifies a very important milestone for the luxury watch market in the region,” says Mohammed Abdulmagied Seddiqi, chief commercial officer of Seddiqi Holding.
“We want to create a safe space for those looking to invest in a second-hand luxury watch, and we believe that it is our duty to drive this movement into the second-hand space. WatchBox is a renowned global leader in the industry and we are thrilled to join forces with them, not only to provide this exciting concept to Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons’ customers, but to revolutionize the sector across the Middle East,” he adds.
The boutique and partnership will help customers of Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons buy and sell pre-owned watches directly with WatchBox and make it possible for them to trade-in old watches to part-finance new watches at the retail giant’s network of showrooms.
“Customers will be granted many options beyond purchasing new watches,” says Danny Govberg, co-founder and CEO of WatchBox.
“They will be able to initiate trades with pieces from their personal collections for new timepieces from Seddiqi-owned boutiques, sell pre-owned watches directly to WatchBox, and trade or purchase pre-owned watches from WatchBox’s $80 million global inventory—all with transparency and ease,” he adds.
Shoppers in Dubai are about to discover that pre-owned watches, when properly repaired, serviced, polished, authenticated and packaged by global leaders like Watchbox and Watchfinder, are almost identical to brand new watches.
Watchbox offers a two year warranty for every watch it sells thanks to everything being fully checked at workshops accredited by the watch brands.
With this joint venture with Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons, WatchBox now has private showrooms and buying offices in Philadelphia, Hong Kong, Singapore, Switzerland, South Africa, and the Middle East.
“WatchBox’s expansion strategy is built upon developing a truly connected global marketplace and targets geographic regions with a strong growth forecast for the luxury watch segment,” says Amanda Ellison, global president and chief operating officer of WatchBox. “The Middle East represents a massive opportunity for the pre-owned watch category, and there is no better partner to help us deliver a standard of excellence for both product and service than Ahmed Seddiqi & Sons.”