Franck Muller’s home-style store concept, notably that of its 2016 addition located at Isetan, Wisma Atria, features sub-divided sections on the shop floor which are designed to look like familiar areas in a typical home like the living room, drawing room, dining room and a library.
Such a “home store” concept isn’t new as it was introduced in 2007. The first such Franck Muller Singapore boutique in this style was then located at Delfi Orchard. [Reference: TimeWerke Anniversary Issue, pages 314 to 329].
What truly struck us, apart from the fine décor and the “home-styled” design, is that the third Franck Muller boutique, located at Isetan Wisma Atria, occupies a rather large retail floor area, covering 2,399 square feet.
This is rather surprising as it means that this Franck Muller boutique at Isetan, Wisma Atria is actually around 30% larger than the existing one at ION Orchard.
Given the current challenges facing the luxury industry, including the watch industry, why is the brand expanding its retail boutique operations?
What’s more, is there really a need for a third store given that the latest one at Isetan, Wisma Atria is located right beside the ION Orchard shopping mall which also has a Franck Muller boutique?
The latest statistics, according to the Federation of the Swiss Watch Industry, indicate that Swiss watch exports to Singapore have dropped to CHF321.5 million, representing a decline of 14.6% between January 2016 to April 2016 as compared to the same period in 2015.
Well, there is an underlying reason. From what we understand, Franck Muller will cease operating the 1,800-plus square feet boutique at ION Orchard.
In other words, Singapore will only have two Franck Muller boutiques.
While the Franck Muller Boutique at Wisma Atria is larger than the existing one at ION Orchard, one must bear in mind that their latest store has a much better advantage – and that is its street level frontage facing Orchard Road. This is a major plus point for luxury brand retailers in Singapore.
Other related articles on timewerke.com that may be of interest:
i. Franck Muller: A new home
ii. Franck Muller Gothique: Got it?
ii. Franck Muller: Psy keeping watch “Gangnam Style”
iii. Franck Muller: Shenyang Forum