To mark 280 years of the brand Favre Leuba introduced the Bivouac 9000 in 2017, the first mechanical wristwatch capable of measuring altitudes of up to an incredible 9,000 meters above sea level. In January 2018, the brand’s CEO, Thomas Morf, who hails from the Alps, decided to test the Bivouac 9000 himself, by taking a challenging journey to Ladakh. He used the watch with great success as the timekeeper throughout his journey, truly conquering frontiers. Morf speaks to Hiren Kumar Bose on his Ladakh adventure
Do tell us about the purpose of the trip.
The purpose of the trip was to go beyond the ordinary routine of being a CEO of a watch brand. It was meant to create an authentic story with the Raider Bivouac 9000. What else can be more authentic if the CEO is going to use this exceptional timepiece himself? Also, it allowed us to shoot a movie and click hundreds of pictures in an extraordinary environment. All these activities we plan to use it in our communication to underline the brand claim “Conquering Frontiers”.
What were the results?
The results we’ve achieved were even beyond our set goals. When I saw the result, I (and many more) had tears in the eyes. Everything was highly emotional, the region, the people, the weather, the temperature, the hike, the shootings. Just about everything.
What was the route you undertook for the trip?
We started from Leh at 3500m above sea level to a point as high as 5600m above sea level. We also did a part of the Chadar trek. It was amazing.
Did the watch serve the purpose of a timepiece capable of measuring altitudes of up to an incredible 9,000 m above sea level?
The watch performed extremely well and reliable and was a very useful friend/companion on my wrist. It’s a fantastic timepiece for all those interested in measuring altitudes in all their endeavours, be it on a mountain or a skyscraper anywhere in the world.
How has the Bivouac 9000 performed on the market? How many pieces has it sold since it was launched in 2017?
It was one of our halo models, conceived and developed to set the tone for Favre Leuba. It’s the successor of the original Bivouac from the 60’s but completely re-engineered. All pieces produced so far have been sold.
Has the Indian market shown interest in the brand which was once very popular among the Indian middle-class household having their favourite Favre- Leuba table clock?
The Indian market indeed is one of our best markets so far and it has received Favre Leuba very well. Still, people remember Favre Leuba and the recall rate is pretty high. Nonetheless, the younger generation needs to get familiar with the brand, through a strong communication strategy in using off-and online channels. This will allow Favre Leuba to strengthen its position in India and in the rest of the world.