John Mayer and IWC exchange open letters about the direction of the brand
Thoughts from a "big fan"
Singer-songwriter, John Mayer, has never been one to keep his thoughts to himself, whether they are about ex-girlfriends, airport lounges or hair twirlers, he is often happy to share what is on his mind through social media channels or in interviews, and his thoughts on Swiss watch makers IWC Schaffhausen, which he is a "big fan" of, are no different. Mayer recently published an open letter to the brand, in which he both criticises and honours the heritage watch makers, and IWC have responded.
Mayer begins his address to IWC by saying that his fist impressions of their watches were "unforgettable", and he goes on to demonstrate the importance that the brand has had in his life. He notes the significant purchases of Big Pilot – which became his code name on tour, saw the 12 o'clock emblem engraved on his guitar and a platinum edition Big Pilot was his commemorative purchase after his first Grammy award win.
But he continues by pointing out the recent moves by the company, which has changed hands to Richemont Group since he first fell for the timepieces, that he takes particular issue with. He cites, in particular, a string of 'special edition' re-editions of some of IWC's classic designs to which he takes objection, and a celebrity 'friend of the brand' endorsement scheme that Mayer says doesn't involve committed appreciators and collectors, just famous faces on red carpets.
"When you started to open brick-and-mortar boutiques... The integral models in your lineup saw their DNA spliced into special limited editions so many times over that the the original models began to look like a tired donor..."
In their response IWC has seemingly taken Mayers comments on board, in the heartfelt manner in which they were intended. They have shed some light on some of the issues Mayer has highlighted, explaining that some modern dynamic watch making methods have had to be adapted. The brand also openly invites Mayer to attend the pretigious SIHH 2015 exhibition in Geneva on Tuesday, January 20.
Buro 24/7 will be keeping an eye on how this dialogue evolves and if there are any positive impacts on the luxury brand...