Interview: Ulysse Nardin CEO Patrick Pruniaux On The Freak, The Future, And What Makes A Watch Truly Worth It

Interview: Ulysse Nardin CEO Patrick Pruniaux On The Freak, The Future, And What Makes A Watch Truly Worth It

Ulysse Nardin’s new CEO, Patrick Pruniaux, has driven an interesting professional life. fake watch prices brand heads are typically drawn from two groups: industry lifers, who have lived and breathed fake watch prices for their entire careers, and business chiefs, who are perhaps more prized for their discernment about protecting shareholder esteem than for their bred-in-the-bone love of fake watch prices and watchmaking per se. Pruniaux has had a curiously broad range of positions – he started his career with LVMH in 2000, where he first took care of wine and spirits for Latin America, yet then went to TAG Heuer, where he oversaw international exports. 

Patrick Pruniaux, CEO of Ulysse Nardin.

But in 2014 he accomplished something which you’d think would get him run out of Geneva on a rail: he joined Apple, where he first worked on something that Apple would at the time just refer to indirectly as the Special Projects Team. Pruniaux’s move was particularly daring, as Apple would not mention to him what the Special Project was – as he advised me over breakfast in New York recently, he had a (unclear) title and a salary offer, and was advised to live with or without it. The Special Project of course turned out to be the Apple fake watch prices Pruniaux headed the group dispatching it in the UK and Ireland. What’s more, in September of 2017 – with regards to his apparent tendency to make surprising career moves – he left Apple to become CEO of Ulysse Nardin.

With his first SIHH as CEO behind him, Pruniaux plunked down with HODINKEE to discuss his surprising career, how his time in the tech world influenced his views on traditional watchmaking, and what he sees in Ulysse Nardin’s future.

jack forster

You came into Ulysse Nardin from a completely different environment (at Apple).

patrick pruniaux

Well … I knew what to expect, I went through nine years at TAG Heuer already, I totally knew what to anticipate. The transition was not so troublesome – I should say very truly, the energy was quick. When I arrived in the workplace for the first run through [at Ulysse Nardin] I said wow … this is actually what I endorsed on for. I don’t think there is one time when I regretted my choice to leave Apple. What’s more, it’s clever, in light of the fact that individuals don’t leave Apple. Except if they get fired [laughing]. I’ve known the industry and the move to Apple was for sure a major cultural stun, and was very electric.

JF

That was four years ago?

PP

Yes, and really from a personal stance, it was additionally precisely what I was searching for. I’d went through nine years at TAG Heuer which was really energizing, loads of fun, however it was additionally an ideal opportunity for me to proceed onward to something else. On the off chance that you change, I think you need to change drastically. 

The Freak Vision, 2018

JF

You were at TAG Heuer when some very cutting edge improvements were going on.

PP

[Laughs] Well there was the cell phone … not our best hour. That market [luxury versatile phones], I mean, even the best one in the industry, Vertu, didn’t make it. That market – it’s interesting however I think there are a few exercises to be learned, sincerely. For me one of them is that sooner or later, usefulness prevails over other aspects. 

JF

I remember borrowing the Vertu Signature S, numerous years prior – it was a lovely item yet the innovation developed so quickly.

PP

Yes – however to be straightforward, looking back, I think probably individuals at Vertu, or at TAG Heuer, we clearly didn’t see the revolution of the iPhone coming. No one did. Furthermore, that was the large change. I think everyone was anticipating that that market should sort of balance out from an innovation perspective. In the event that that had occurred, there would have unquestionably been room for a sizable market for product that would be driven by craftsmanship and feeling. In any case, nobody saw that there was another revolution coming, and that is what murdered that business.

The Freak Innovision 2, 2017

JF

And the experimental watchmaking at TAG Heuer? The high frequency fake watch prices experiments with magnetic escapements …

PP

Ah … that was perfect. It was an interesting time. Simultaneously TAG Heuer figured out how to sell some fake watch prices to fake watch prices lovers who may not otherwise have looked into the brand, and sort of play in a different group. OK, those were a portion of the great years of the industry in general. I’m not sure that would be conceivable today, but rather it was interesting. I mean the V4 was an interesting product – I figure the V4 might have had some potential, I don’t have a clue what happened now, whether TAG halted it or not. 

JF

Companies could afford to make experiments that way and see what the market would accept.

PP

But additionally you know, I was new to the fake watch prices industry when I joined TAG Heuer in 2005 … it was really meeting Jean-Christophe [Babin, at that point TAG Heuer CEO] that triggered my desire to join TAG Heuer. I thought the company was acceptable, it was in both luxury and sport simultaneously. Jean-Christophe was cool … it was both informal and super professional, which I believe is probably the contemporary way to run a business. That is what persuaded me to join, and what I saw at TAG was a company that was confronting different difficulties – year after year, regardless of good and bad times including the [financial] crisis, you could see the company moving.

Apple fake watch prices Series 3 Edition in ceramic (left) and Apple fake watch prices Hermés (right)

JF

And then an opportunity came up at Apple.

PP

This is a true story – when I first marked my contract at Apple, I had a decent bid for employment from an old fake watch prices friend, however I chose to go to Apple, and Apple didn’t mention to me what I would do before I started. I endorsed, for the first run through in my life, a contract, not knowing what I would do. There was a salary and a title. It just said, Special Project. That is all [laughs]. Which was cool; it was actually what I was searching for. It’s an act of pure trust – I remember my friend saying to me “Patrick, I mean, OK, that is high (the salary) yet are you sure? That is to say, you don’t have the foggiest idea what you will do.” So that is fine … I’ll discover out.

And of course, they disclosed to me I’d be working on a fake watch prices and for a year I was working on the dispatch of the Apple fake watch prices I was situated in Cupertino, working with a little group that was working across the organization between different departments. Apple was already very well organized – I mean clearly, there’s no absence of ability there except for that year I had a place with a group that was driven by somebody coming from the luxury industry, from the design world. There was little group … also, I was the just one coming from the fake watch prices industry.

That surprised me, since I thought they had already recruited individuals from the fake watch prices industry, however no. You know, some other company would have done the following: we want to dispatch a fake watch prices to do that, we two or three senior executives from the fake watch prices industry. Apple didn’t do that. They said no … we’re simply making a normal Apple product. Before we make a fake watch prices it’s an Apple product.

The Classic Perpetual Ludwig, a re-version of a fake watch prices from 1996

JF

What did you detract from your time there?

PP

There was one thing that really satisfied me when I worked there: the company is so prompt to dissect what it’s doing, to take a gander at things with zero sense of self. It’s not about who says something, but rather to take a gander at things even after a dispatch, and to rapidly adjust, change. What’s more, that was wonderful. Truth be told, when I left TAG, there was a part of me figuring, I would get a kick out of the chance to work in an environment that could be more rational. I saw a few choices that were so irrational, And I love that as it were – I mean, I figure pure luxury can resemble art in that you can surrender yourself to feeling, you can give more space to feeling than if you were in some systematic banking. Furthermore, I love that, however I was very satisfied to join a company where it was 90% rational, 10% emotional.

JF

There’s a sense in luxury that being propelled by feeling is a way to infuse something interesting creatively.

PP

Which is true. In any case, you could do both, I’m persuaded you can do both, and that is where the creative process is generally interesting … I’ll give you a model. That is one thing that I learned at Apple. The Apple fake watch prices there are two sizes: 38mm and 42mm. It is hard to go below 38mm in light of the fact that then the screen is excessively little. Now, I don’t have the foggiest idea how Jonny Ive’s group thought of the right size however what I know for sure was that they gathered a great deal of information on the human body, to dissect the explicitness of the human wrist. It sounds so fundamental, yet was that ever done in the fake watch prices industry?

The Ulysse Nardin Trilogy Of Time ‘Tellurium Johannes Kepler’ first introduced in 1992.

JF

Certainly not that I’m aware of.

PP

For me it was a stunner. I unexpectedly remembered my years of being on product committees and our conversations … decent, no doubt, would i be able to try that on? Well, you have a smaller wrist than me. Would we be able to make it 1mm smaller, would we be able to make it possibly bigger. You understand (laughs). 

The late Rolf Schnyder, who acquired Ulysse Nardin in 1983 and oversaw the dispatch of the original Freak.

JF

Ulysse Nardin is a company with a ton of traditions. Essentially we have Ulysse Nardin before Rolf Schnyder and after Rolf Schnyder. These can seem like very different companies. How would you get the different bits of Ulysse Nardin to converse with each other?

PP

I truly accept what we are doing now is a continuation of what has been accomplished for more than 170 years (Ulysse Nardin was established in 1846). Part of the heritage of Rolf is in effect extremely requesting in terms of manufacture, putting hugely in manufacture, being very inventive. Everyone is guaranteeing advancement in the fake watch prices industry, however I figure what Rolf did was development in a different way than before his arrival – yet I think the two angles that are common to the two eras, before and after Rolf, is development. He was ready to come out for certain astonishing products, yet he additionally imparted an outlook in the company – there was a ton of his daring, his audacity.

And I feel that is still part of the company – which is interesting in light of the fact that typically you’d find that kind of outlook in companies that are significantly more arrogant than we are. From one perspective there is boldness, however there is likewise quietude, and in theory, they ought to be restricted. However, at Ulysse Nardin, the two live side by side.

There are a few things that I inherited – one is our major R&D, how we do things now, however for the following five, 10 years. The second is, how would we ensure we can develop what we have already, and the Freak is a genuine model. The Freak Vision is a very decent advancement of the Freak – could it become programmed, what would we be able to acquire in terms of slimness; how would we ensure we progress? What’s the following huge step?

I was recently having a conversation with our Head of Innovation, on something I can’t reveal yet. He clarified it twice, I actually didn’t understand, and disgracefully (laughs) I asked him a third time .. what’s more, I said, Stephan, what’s your possibility of accomplishment? He said, probably half. I said alright, what you’re advising me is, you have a half possibility of coming up with something that is a revolution in the fake watch prices industry, and he said, Oh, Patrick, the word revolution is excessively strong. Also, I said it’s a major jump you’re describing. It’s a major jump on one of the critical parts of the fake watch prices it would be a true revolution. What’s more, he says, Well, perhaps, you know yet it’s just half. What’s more, I love it. So clearly we’re max throttle on that. What’s more, every time I see him, I challenge him, I say, Where are we? Clearly I’m interested, for me half seems like 100%.

The Ulysse Nardin Marine Torpilleur Military.

JF

We were talking somewhat earlier about TAG Heuer and its period of wild experiments, and simultaneously we had Cartier doing likewise, with ID1 and ID2 … there used to be a considerable amount more of that sort of thing. There aren’t numerous companies left that are really trying to create real paradigm shifts in mechanical arrangements. It’s interesting that Ulysse Nardin is still very effectively engaged with that sort of research.

PP

I think the consumer is changing; there are new kinds of competitions. I believe it will open up a ton of new opportunities. In any case, if there’s one thing I’m persuaded of, and possibly you could say it’s connected to the years I spent at Apple, however I think there are still parts of the fake watch prices … that could be improved altogether, without it becoming a trick. You can construct few very complex developments, yet then you’re conversing with few people. I strongly accept that a portion of the parts of the fake watch prices – and there are just four or five that are really basic – where we can in any case improve, and that would likewise attract new customers. (Laughs) I’m trying not to unveil a lot on this. What I’m saying is, I think more major R&D is interesting if it’s not gimmicky.

JF

Yeah, the things you can take a gander at are the regulating organ, the escapement, power supply, power transmission, and that is really about it … you take a gander at mechanical fake watch prices nowadays and there’s very minimal inside them that a watchmaker from 300 years prior would not recognize on some level. 

PP

It resembles a Formula 1 car, where you may try a new kind of brakes and one day, 10 years later, it might apply to an ordinary car … For something to not be gimmicky, it’s troublesome, it needs to bring real advantages to – I know it seems like a marketing word, be that as it may, real advantages to the end consumer. I’m very proud of the way that, at Ulysse Nardin, we’re not a marketing company, we’re not driven by marketing. We’re first driven by the way that we are a manufacture. Marketing is here to grow what we’re doing, it’s not here to drive the whole story … I strongly accept this is a very contemporary way to assemble and sell luxury today, I think it holds more an incentive over time and has more interest to the consumer.

The Freak’s development likewise goes about as its hands.

JF

Obviously the Freak is your F1 car.

PP

Absolutely – it’s likewise a great ambassador for Ulysse Nardin. You know, as a way of standing out enough to be noticed of individuals who are perhaps starting to get interested in mechanical watchmaking, or have never considered the big picture before. The Freak is Formula 1, or like 911 for Porsche. 911 is a fraction of Porsche deals, yet 911 encapsulates Porsche. The name, the history, and the way it has been expressed and done over time is phenomenal. Now, I see significantly more potential in the Freak; that is what we are already starting this year. You ought to hope to see more of the Freak assortment – totally staggering, in the following six months.

We’ve been working on revamping and rejuvenating the rest of the assortments … there’s been a great task finished on Marine, the Torpilleur, Torpilleur Military is doing great, we’ve gotten decent accomplishment there. The Diver is a great assortment, it simply needs development now. On the Freak and the Executive, these are interesting. I set up them on the grounds that for me, they exemplify the contemporary, the modern part of the brand. The Freak Out, which I’m wearing today, is doing great; the first generation of the Vision is being dispatched as well. 

There’s a craving for contemporary fake watch prices done by a manufacture brand, and that causes me to feel we have significantly more to say in that field.

To discover more about Ulysse Nardin, the Freak, Trilogy Of Time, and that’s just the beginning, visit Ulysse-Nardin.com.

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