Official Statement on Scarcity of Rolex’s Watches Brings Shock
People around the world are wondering how they’re going to get their hands on a new Rolex. The timepiece is getting difficult to come by. Rolex, with a typically mum’s-the-word-type of press department, has broken its silence with a surprising retort.
There are many Swiss watch brands around today, but one of the quietest in terms of news and press is Rolex SA, aka Rolex, owned by the Hans Wilsdorf Foundation (which is seen as a charitable trust by the government of Switzerland). Privacy is the golden rule.
For Rolex, this rings true in another way: it’s privately owned. This means that it does not have to respond to shareholders.
With this type of setup, one would never expect the prestigious brand to make a sort of general public announcement, but that’s what Yahoo! Finance is reporting has happened. The response comes from a growing number of players questioning the causes of the recent Rolex shortage.
Speculations have focused on a sort of “perfect storm“ of factors that include growing demand, a thriving resale market, and pandemic supply-chain issues that have impacted other industries as well (i.e., as in the sneaker market or the food/grocery store shortages, etc.).
Conspiracy theorists believe something else could be at play. Perhaps the company is slowly choking off the supply hoping to drive up the value of the watch per unit.
The company made a clarification:
“The scarcity of our products is not a strategy on our part. Our current production cannot meet the existing demand in an exhaustive way, at least not without reducing the quality of our watches – something we refuse to do as the quality of our products must never be compromised.”
The company is setting the record straight, explaining that they cannot simply just make more watches to satisfy demand without sacrificing the integrity of the watches, the very reason the product is in such high demand as it is.
The statement continues;
“This level of excellence requires time, and as we have always done, we will continue to take the necessary time to ensure that all our watches not only comply with our standards of excellence but also meet the expectations of our customers in terms of quality, reliability, and robustness.”
Robustness is exactly what Rolex buyers want, and Rolex does not aim to disappoint. The statement adds, “Rolex does not compromise on what it takes to produce exceptional watches.”
The remainder of the release explains that all Rolex watches are created in-house in Switzerland across four locations. Each piece is carefully assembled by hand, with a high level of attention paid to detail. Just as Rome wasn’t built in a day, neither is a quality Rolex.
Of course, the company couldn’t help itself but to leave a little reminder to the Rolex-lovers of the world that the best Rolex watches are ones bought from “official retailers who independently manage the allocation of watches to customers.” Buy retail, and accuse the retailer.
Some have conjectured that this statement makes the retailers look like they have a stash of Rolex watches behind the counter or tucked safely back in the vault, awaiting a rainy day. That may or may not be the case. The hypothesis is comical but doesn’t provide any solutions.
A fun fact throws a wrench in the blame game. It’s been said by Thierry Stern, President of Patek Philippe, that getting a good watchmaker program in place can take two decades. In other words, it’s not as simple as throwing a few more guys on the line; the trade takes years to learn.
Whether it’s the market, the retailer, or some other middle man, Rolex has spoken out with a clear message – what we make is beautiful, and that takes time. Don’t rush us, and don’t point your Rolex-less fingers at us. Check with a retailer near you.
See more about - The 10 Best Rolex Watches You Can Buy Right Now