Blockchain Technology Revolutions in Swiss Watchmaking
Breitling CEO Georges Kern announced that all of the brand’s watches going forward will employ blockchain technology. The technology offers authentication backed by the Arianee protocol, providing an e-passport containing “a digital, inalterable and augmented identity” for each individual watch. Blockchain technology is the latest innovation in Swiss watchmaking, promising transparency and traceability.
Breitling and Vacheron Constantin, along with other watchmakers, are embracing blockchain technology. The technology facilitates a circular experience for watch owners, allowing them to enjoy services and experiences through the product they own, and easily and safely sell it. The Arianee protocol also enables third parties or brands to build in additional services, such as managing servicing and warranty extensions, loyalty programs, special events, and facilitating resale.
The potential of blockchain’s application in the watch industry is evident from the membership list of the consortium which collectively owns and has access to the Arianee technology. Apart from Breitling and Vacheron Constantin, other renowned watchmakers like Audemars Piguet, MB&F, Roger Dubuis, and Manufacture Royale are part of the consortium. The membership list also includes Richemont Group, the owner of Vacheron Constantin and Cartier, among other high-end Swiss marques, and luxury e-commerce platforms Yoox Net-a-Porter and Watchfinder.
Transparency and Traceability
Blockchain technology is expected to introduce transparency to Swiss watchmaking, a traditionally closed industry. The “Swiss Made” label has long been a subject of controversy and opaque efficacy, and blockchain offers the potential to bring transparency to the source and life of the product. The Annianee protocol could potentially revolutionize not only the way watches are sold or owned, but also the way they’re made.
The Future of Blockchain Technology
Kern believes that blockchain technology will become ubiquitous in the next decade and a half, providing consumers with information about the source and manufacturing process of products. The application of blockchain technology is not just confined to the watch industry; the fashion industry has long touted blockchain technology as a means of driving ethical and sustainable supply-chain practices, increasing traceability of materials, and encouraging openness from brands.
The embrace of blockchain technology by renowned watchmakers and industry giants signals a significant shift in Swiss watchmaking. The technology not only ensures the authenticity and traceability of watches but also brings transparency to the industry as a whole. The future of blockchain technology in the Swiss watchmaking industry is promising, offering a circular experience for watch owners and transforming the way watches are made and sold.