Baselworld Trade Show to Halve Exhibitor Numbers in 2018

PARIS — The Baselworld watch and jewelry show trade show will halve its exhibitor numbers next year in response to a prolonged market downturn, in the most visible sign so far of the impact of smartwatches on traditional watchmaking.
The industry’s leading showcase expects to welcome between 600 and 700 exhibiting companies in 2018, down from 1,300 in 2017 and 1,500 in 2016, organizers said. The duration of the show, scheduled to run from March 22 to 27, has been shortened by two days.
Swiss watch exports fell 9.9 percent in 2016, their second consecutive annual drop, according to the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry. The sales slide erased the 15 percent growth achieved during the boom years between 2011 and 2014.
The market is undergoing radical change worldwide as a result of a drop in spending in Asia, the leading market for Swiss timepieces, and the introduction of connected watches such as the Apple Watch. As a result of the downsizing at Baselworld, halls 1.2, 4 and 5 and about half of Hall 2 will no longer be occupied by the fair.
“We were faced with the challenge of either lowering our quality standards or accepting a significant drop in the number of

Follow WWD on Twitter or become a fan on Facebook.

Read More…      

Posted in Uncategorized.