Reactor Watches Kaput

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Reactor Watches Kaput

Post by koimaster » May 9th 2022, 5:23pm

Reactor Watches, the overbuilt fashion sports watch company started in 2003, is shuttering after nineteen years in business. The owner cites a variety of reasons; a business that started as a family business with his sons, who have now walked away from it; issues with supply chain, material costs, and waining popularity of analog watches due to smart watches dominating wrists.

At the prices that Reactor is charging, they should have went to automatic and mechanical movements. In my opinion, the price point for quartz watches that they were charging just isn't competitive against brands like Invicta which offer a similar aesthetic.

Here is the statement from company owner "Jimmy" on the companies website:
The Mission from Day one, was to create the best sport watch on the market and to build an amazing family business that put business ethics and customer needs before all mighty dollar.

The mission remains the same today, but many things have changed. Both of my children that started in the business with me have left and joined their mothers very successful Real-estate business. The traditional watch market is under attack by smart watches and cell phones greatly reducing the number of traditional watches sold. Many watch companies have evolved their business model to more direct to consumer using a factitious retail so they can significantly reduce the sales price showing big savings that are truly not real.

Due to the slowdown in watch sales and difficulty of making money, many retailers have elected to simply exit the watch business, making it more and more difficult for REACTOR to open new accounts and maintain our current ones.

Manufacturing has its own challenges... the cost of raw materials is rising quickly along with a significant increase in shipping cost and additional tariff now that Hong Kong no longer has a "special" trade status with the US.

Building a REACTOR watch is very expensive, we only use the best materials and closely adhere to our DNA and our mission statement of making the best. Swiss Superluminova is now over 12,000.00 per pound and we put a minimum of 8 layers of SL on ever REACTOR we build, replacing spring bars with solid SS screw bars greatly increases the strength and fit but cost well over 100 times more than standard spring bar construction. Screw down crowns, double O ring construction, forged case backs are all very important components to making a REACTOR a REACTOR but come at a high cost.

We have always believed that building the best product, putting our dealer's success and profitability before our own, keeping their customers happy, regardless of the cost, would make for a very strong long-term business.... Truth is it is not working.

What started off as an amazing dream has become a day-to-day challenge with very long hours, big financial risks, and no profit,

Our plan is to start promoting a retirement sale in early April to move through our current inventory, while making a commitment to our dealers and customers to keep our service center open through at least the balance of the year and to staff customer service to handle any concerns and needs. Once we make the decision to close the service center we will partner with a highly respected watch repair center and provide them with REACTOR specific parts to maintain ongoing service for REACTOR

The word "retirement" has never been a part of my vocabulary but with 5 grandchildren and a love for golf I am sure I will stay busy.

I want to personally thank our key dealers that have supported REACTOR and our mission, and I want to thank our many collectors that have supported us over the years and believed in me and my dream...
As stated, they are currently liquidating their inventory in a "retirement" sale. Not my cup of tea, but I'm sure some readers may want to take advantage of the discounts in their shop. ... -it-quits/

If you are so inclined to purchase one or more of these


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Re: Reactor Watches Kaput

Post by svaglic » May 9th 2022, 6:36pm

I liked their torture tests on their watches. They used one as a hockey puck and were smacking it hard. It was scratched with a shattered crystal, but it still worked.
I used one for our search and rescue trainings and deployments, it saw a lot of abuse. It saw about three years of action and made it past my retirement, never had an issue with it. I had broken several GShocks in trainings, that’s when I gave Reactor a shot.
It wasn’t a watch that saw any use outside of the military, it just wasn’t a watch I liked the looks of, it was my tool watch.
In memory of TB/Phfluff, since he isn’t here to continue to give his praise, I will share it for him.
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Re: Reactor Watches Kaput

Post by jason_recliner » May 9th 2022, 6:42pm

Just had a look at their website. I can think of at least one reason their watches don't sell, in addition to the increasing poularity of smart watches.
Last edited by jason_recliner on May 12th 2022, 5:03pm, edited 1 time in total.
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