PARIS — Moving into the secondhand watch business, Net-a-porter and Mr. Porter have forged a deal with Watchfinder & Co. to sell high-end timepieces through their sites, starting in the U.S.
“This collaboration represents an important next step in offering our customers a wide selection of quality timepieces from the growing pre-owned watch market,” said Alison Loehnis, president of luxury and fashion at Net-a-porter, Mr Porter as well as the discount fashion site The Outnet.
The move reinforces the push of the two sites into hard luxury at a time when high-end watch and jewelry labels increasingly embrace digital means for presenting and selling products — a shift that has been accelerated by the pandemic. It also reflects growing interest from watch labels in getting involved in the secondhand market as a way to connect with consumers and show they promote more sustainable forms of consumption.
Through the partnership, which is being launched in the U.S., Net-a-porter and Mr Porter combined will offer 108 models and 15 new brands, with limited editions and discontinued pieces from the past three decades.
Labels include Bulgari, Christian Dior, Breguet, Omega, Hublot, Patek Philippe, Rolex and Tudor.
The companies described the selection of timepieces on the sites as a “data-informed” approach. The watches will be sold in a section titled “Pre-Owned by Watchfinder & Co.” on the sites. Services include personal shoppers for previews, virtual shopping appointments and styling advice as well as recommendations from watch specialists.
Mr Porter will offer the opportunity to trade in used timepieces for credit for other purchases on the site.
“The U.S. is a hugely important market for us and this new partnership is a significant evolution for both our business and the Watchfinder brand,” said Arjen van de Vall, chief executive officer of Watchfinder & Co. A number of watch labels have flagged improved trading conditions in the U.S. market, fueled by a post-pandemic spending surge.
Timepieces will be authenticated by Watchfinder’s service center in Europe, which is accredited by 19 watch labels, and come with a two-year warranty.
Net-a-porter and Mr Porter belong to the Yoox Net-a-porter Group, part of Compagnie Financière Richemont.