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Julien Tornare on Zenith: “E-commerce and Customisation are a Certainty”
In an exclusive interview with Luxury Society, Zenith's CEO Julien Tornare explains how the brand is moving forward with retailers, customisation and China.
Since taking the reins at LVMH-owned Zenith last May, Julien Tornare has been focusing his efforts on one key objective: awakening the “sleeping beauty” that is Zenith, and taking it to the next level. He speaks more about the road ahead for the 152-year old manufacture in an interview with Luxury Society.
Over your 17 years at Vacheron Constantin, the brand saw significant growth in terms of profit, as well as its number of employees in Asia and in Switzerland. What key learning points are you bringing to Zenith from your past experience?
I am bringing many key learnings based on my experience at the headquarters, on the Swiss market, but especially from the US and Asian markets. If I had to mention some of these learnings, I would start with market knowledge. Since I joined Zenith, we have been trying to remain very close to the market. Unless you go there, there is no way you can know about it. Now, being back at the headquarters, and in the Swiss mountains, we make sure that we travel every week to meet the retailers for example. This is the only way to react quickly and drive the business properly.
Jean-Claude Biver mentioned profitability problems and a lack of confidence in Zenith’s previous management. What are the steps you are taking now in this new challenge?
We have taken some good measures. We have already recruited new and skilled team members for key positions at our headquarters and in priority markets. It is extremely important.
We have already worked on our operations and improved our top and bottom line results dramatically.
Then, we went to the markets and did a listening exercise to find out what is going well; what is not; and what we should do to turn it into a success. We received tons of feedback. Many retailers that we have known for 20 years shared their thoughts openly with us.
At the same time, we did some considerable work on the product portfolio.
Now, we have defined four products lines. Two are classic lines that are already well known, like the Elite and Chronomaster. We will also focus our development on the Pilot, an iconic collection with wonderful history and great potential. We are still talking about our bestsellers! And last but not least, there is the Defy collection, which we launched last September. For us, the Defy line is a symbol of our capacity and innovation and represents the future in its tradition.
https://www.luxurysociety.com/en/articl ... 7-60970893
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