Zenith feels the summer blues as it hones in on commercial sweet spot


Zenith is reminding its authorised dealers about the commercial potential of its blue watches this summer. 

Always a dealer (and customer) favorite, the abundant use of blue across Zenith families is another sign that it wants to create fast-moving bestsellers for its partners.

Zenith’s chief executive, Julien Tornare, told WatchPro at Baselworld this year how important it is to stay relevant in a modern market.


He said: “The challenge is how we talk like a 21st century brand. Being 153 years old does not mean you need to dress up like an old lady, we have to live in today’s world.”

He recognized how contemporary brands had become more popular and wanted to ensure that Zenith didn’t get caught up in the past, something which could have been behind this most recent release.

Mr Tornare insisted he did not want Zenith to stagnate and its best days much be ahead. “Before I came on board, I listened to many people, and what I heard was very much in line with my own feelings after 22 years in the industry. It was a famous brand, a fantastic name, a gorgeous history, but I heard a lot about a sleeping beauty. I even heard that the brand was a bit boring, so we need to make it shine.”

He added:  “We need to communicate what is behind the brand. Also, I am one of the people who is totally convinced — and I can say this because I am from Switzerland — that the Swiss watchmaking industry has a tendency to look backwards and to be stuck in its history. We forget that a living industry and a living brand always has to move forwards. If you don’t, in today’s fast-changing world, we will become a museum industry and a museum brand; I do not want that.”

The Defy Classic, El Primero 21 Blue, the 40mm Pilot Type 20 Extra Special or the 45mm Pilot Type 20 Extra Special Chronograph have all been released with summer vibes in mind.

The Defy Classic with its aqua blue inner bezel ring comes with a blue alligator-leather coated black rubber strap.

However, not to be outdone, the Defy El Primero 21 Blue sports a blue mainplate teamed with a choice of straps in matching seasonal shades.

The 40mm Pilot Type 20 Extra Special and 45mm Pilot Type 20 Extra Special reach for the skies by adopting a matt azure blue dial and are water-resistant to 100m.

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