Previously owned by private equity firm Leonard Green & Partners, which hired Houlihan Lokey to handle the sale, Tourneau has had declining sales and is losing market share, according to a report by Debtwire, which covers distressed debt. -New York Times
The largest watch retail outlet and authorized dealer for many swiss luxury brands which has been around for 116 years and holds 33 retail locations has been sold to Bucherer. This was announced yesterday and it is not that surprising as sales for Tourneau have been steadily declining over the past few years due to the slow watch industry we know today. Tourneau was also a large seller of many high end pre-owned luxury watches as well that were extremely overpriced and frankly a rip off. ( Don’t worry you get our 2 year warranty - Watch works fine for 2 years then needs a service anyway ) Anyway, Bucherer plans to expand the Carl F. Bucherer watch and jewelry lines in all of the existing Tourneau stores and to get the brand better acquainted with the United States. Now what changes can we expect from the new ownership? I honestly have no idea but in a positive light they could start by offering more discounts on select brands besides Rolex Gold or Two Tone models...Perhaps a better employee commission? I had a few friends who have worked for Tourneau and the sales commission was just aweful as well as the hourly salary for a sales associate. I myself when I was a watch noob purchased a few watches from Tourneau at full retail while doubting the authenticity of grey market dealers offering huge discounts but no warranty. Since then, I have only gone grey market and have had zero problems so far. Anywho, the release of so many smart watches and gadgets along with smartphones keeping perfectly good time definitely hurt the luxury watch industry. Actually, the Apple watch itself has put a dent in the swiss watch industry in my humble opinion. With all that being said the Tourneau time machine on E57th street in NYC is an awesome store and a great experience to browse watches for any watch geek or enthusiast, and I do reccommend if your in the area to check that location out as it is one of the largest locations besides Las Vegas. I do hope Bucherer can succeed with this excursion and we will just have to wait and see. Thanks for reading and stay tuned!
Picture of the multi level Tourneau in NYC
Some Cartier Pieces at TimeMachine