Tiffany & Co launches CT60 new line of luxury watches

Tiffany‘s CT60 timepieces ctake their name from the initials of company founder Charles Lewis Tiffany and the 60 seconds in a New York minute.

The line is inspired by the Tiffany & Co watch that President Franklin Delano Roosevelt got for his birthday in 1945 and that he is seen in ­photographs wearing at the Yalta Conference a few months before the end of World War II.

“It’s really about focusing on something we already have in our DNA since the very beginning of Tiffany,” says Nicola ­Andreatta, a third-­generation Swiss watchmaker and the vice president of Swiss watches for Tiffany. Two years ago, Tiffany & Co hired him to rebuild its watch business nearly from scratch, with a new Switzerland operation.

Indeed, the jeweller has deep roots in the world of horology, going all the way back to 1847, a decade after the store’s founding. The statue of Atlas holding a clock above the entrance of its iconic flagship store in Manhattan, first installed in 1853 when the shop was at another location, was for decades how countless New Yorkers set their watches. In 1868, Tiffany made America’s first stopwatch. And six years later Tiffany also established a beachhead in Swiss watchmaking when it opened a four-story manufacturing facility in Geneva.

At stake in this new effort is winning a bigger piece of the $US27.8 billion global luxury-timepiece market, one that Euromonitor International expects will grow 20 per cent a year through 2019.

To get there, it will be no easy feat for Tiffany & Co. They will be placing big bets on China, and the dramatic stock market slump there has raised questions about consumers’ willingness to spend on indulgences such as jewellery.

”The step we need to make at this very moment is to become a proper watchmaker and not a ­jeweller making watches,” Andreatta told Fortune magazine.