I love a good intra-group dust-up. There’s nothing like brands that were presumably acquired by a major luxury group to exploit different price-points or demographics to get the analytical juices flowing. And today Borro Blog proudly brings you a Swatch Group showdown – the beauty of Blancpain versus the investment value of Breguet watches.
Swatch Group’s Top Two Brands
These are two of the Swatch Group’s top brands (perhaps the top two if you omit Harry Winston, who could only lay claim to that title via their Opus series), and, surprisingly, their rather similar aesthetics makes the comparison an intricate one, full of very personal preferences and subtle crossovers.
Comparing brands from the same group rarely exposes so many similarities between the scrutinized. Before attempting this task, I’d always thought I had a clear idea in mind of what each brand was and what they stood for.
Additionally, I was confident I had a hazy composite of each brand’s key aesthetics floating around in my mind’s eye. It turns out that when I focus in on these generic examples, they feature almost all of the same stylistic traits.
Similarities Between Blancpain and Breguet
Let’s start with the basics: Both brands operate in similar price points. The investment value of Breguet watches, perhaps because of their founder’s reputation, does better in the western world, while Blancpain, because, perhaps, of their willingness to create specific pieces for the Chinese New Year and calendar does very well.
Geo-targeting aside, the age range and gender (middle-aged, wealthy men) is identical for both brands. Both position themselves as heirloom pieces – buy once and buy well. But which brand really will survive the cruel sands of time and line the pockets it once scoured?
The Best Each Brand has to Offer
The inherent value of the case material is a plus for both, and the artisanal nature of both dials pushes a lot the right buttons. The complicated in-house movements are, of course, a plus, but it is the movements from Breguet that tend to offer a little more market separation.
I really do respect and enjoy both brands, and even though I might myself choose the Blancpain because I simply prefer its appearance, I have more faith in the investment value of Breguet watches and its ability to hold value over time. This is due to the undeniably stronger design provenance of the movement.
A narrow win for the past master, but there’s nothing but a hairspring twixt the two in my book.
About the Author
Fell Jensen is a Swiss-trained watchmaker working as an industry analyst.