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The Timeless Timepieces

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Exploring luxury in diminutive wrist-watches, it’s the right time to look beyond sophistication and elegance. Switzerland-based Philip Stein, a market leader in the business of luxury watches and bracelets, has fast become the epitome of exclusivity and luxury in watch technology while following the same success mantra.
Strong believer of the fact that everything on this earth operates ideally when exposed to natural frequencies, Philip Stein’s products boast of natural frequency technology that has been developed by a group of engineers and scientists committed to harnessing the positive influence natural frequencies have on human beings.
Enjoying a good following in UAE, Philip Stein watches and bracelets are strategically designed to help bring its user back to a more relaxed state allowing him to better cope with everything in
busy lives. Dubai-based Precious Times DMCC is the exclusive distributor of Philip Stein products in around 42 countries. Established in 2004, the
company has rights to sell luxury watches and bracelets in Eastern Europe, Middle East and
Indian Subcontinent.
Recently added to their portfolio is a luxe
collection for the Burj Al Arab hotel in Dubai. Operating under the leadership of Dambir Chadha, Chairman of Precious Times, the company is
exploiting a dynamic expansion across the GCC and Middle East.
Emirates Business had a quick conversation with Chadha and got a fair foretaste of interesting niceties of luxury watch industry and how this
sector is destined to shape in the coming months.

EXCERPTS FROM THE INTERVIEW
Can you tell us about your brand Philip Stein, and its technology?
Philip Stein is one of the leading luxury Swiss watch and jewellery manufacturers and has immeasurably succeeded in constructing a resilient presence all around the globe. The company offers a wide range watches and accessories that fuse together beautiful design and quality craftsmanship.
I can proudly assert that it is the only luxury brand in the world that utilises NFT (Natural Frequency Technology) in all of its products. This, in fact, is the unique selling point of Philip Stein and allows it to enjoy the owner of a
wellbeing company that promotes harmonious living by creating natural order to one’s life.

Could you please elaborate on the
science behind this NFT technology that you just mentioned?
NFT is based on the scientific principle that the world is surrounded by natural frequencies that help us function at our most optimal state, in terms of health, energy and focus. The earth itself has a natural frequency which is 7.83Hz known as the Schumann Resonance, which in fact is the same frequency as the alpha waves in our brain. Every molecule, tissue and organ within the human body operates at an ideal
frequency, called Harmonic Resonance Frequency (HRF). However, due to the plethora of modern technologies that encapsulate every motion of modern life such as mobile phones, electric power lines and satellite receivers, our body’s frequency is disturbed.
Therefore, each Philip Stein watch or accessory houses a NFT disc, which channels these natural, beneficial frequencies towards our body to help fulfill particular needs, and in effect, counter the harmful exposure of modern technology.
Studies have proven the importance of being exposed to these frequencies on a daily basis to keep us balanced and at optimal health. Philip Stein watches and bracelets are designed to help wearers feel more focused and less stressed, while sleep bracelets
are designed to help userssleep better and wake up feeling more refreshed.

Is there any other company in the world, which has this technology, or are there similar products?
Philip Stein is the only watch brand in the world to offer this proprietary technology, so customers can get exposure to the NFT while enjoying the beauty of Philip Stein timepieces. This is our principle USP that differentiates us from the multitude of ubiquitous watch manufactures that have saturated the market.

What stops other watch companies in the world to copy the technology?
The technology is the propitiatory technology of Philip Stein and cannot be reverse engineered, therefore, making the process and machines used to fashion the disc tremendously difficult to determine.

What products does the company have to offer its customers?
The company introduced the technology in 2002 by embedding the disc into their watches. As the brand continues to grow, it experimented with new ways to offer its USP to different industries in an attempt to promote wellbeing.
Hence, in 2010, the company launched a range of jewellry products such as bracelets, which have the same disc infused in them. In 2012, the company introduced the sleep bracelet, which we believe to have revolutionised the sleep
industry.

That sounds interesting, can you explain further how and what is the sleep bracelet, and how it works?
Sleep bracelet is an inimitable product, which is essentially worn a few minutes prior to going to sleep. After an abundance of time and money spent on R&D, there were studies constructed at Simon Fraiser University (Canada) that gave the brand a revolutionary idea. A particular study done on human cell culture showed when the NFT disc was tuned to a lower frequency; it in fact increased the production of melatonin. Melatonin is the hormone the body produces when sleeping, which essentially what these common sleeping tablets attempt to imitate in the body. However, the sleep bracelet achieves the exact same result without consuming any unnatural pharmaceuticals, and by simply wearing the bracelet before going to sleep.

So where can we purchase this sleep bracelet?
At present, it is sold worldwide and is also available on 14 different airlines across the world. Furthermore, it is the best selling product on many airlines. On a humorous note, it has commonly been referred to as the ‘jet-lag gadget’.
Precious Times has now positioned the sleep bracelet in every room of the Burj Al Arab hotel, and has even created a special rose gold edition with the Burj branding to highlight the exclusivity and ‘sui generous’ of their hotel.
Additionally, we are currently negotiating with variety of hotels in UAE, such as Versace and Zabeel Saray, who are highly interested in placing the product in their rooms. The sleep bracelet will also be available in 30 spas and health clubs around
the UAE.

Can you tell us a little more about you and your company Precious Times?
I have been in Dubai since 2005 and have always treasured this city, as I believe this is my home and one of the best countries to live in in terms society, advancements and lifestyle. I have been blessed with three children, and my son Vaibhav, a recent graduate of the venerable University of Toronto, is now working with me as the vice president of the
company and has indulged in marketing
and sales.
It has always been my confident belief that the luxury consumer market will always grow and that Dubai would emerge as a major destination of the world which is now clearly evident. Precious Times DMCC has the sole selling distributorship rights of Philip Stein to 41 countries. The territories include Middle East, the Indian sub continent, Africa and Eastern Europe.

What are the company’s plans for 2016? Any expansion plans or collaborations?
We are taking one step at a time. The last two years have been tremendously eventful establishing the brand in UAE and other GCC regions. The brand is now very prominent in the UAE and Saudi Arabia. We are also promoting it in Oman, Qatar, Bahrain and Kuwait and have placed the products there through other popular retailers. I can proudly assert that Philip Stein is now available in Damas, Al Futtaim Watch House, Burj and many other retailers around the UAE.
Our vision encompasses comprehensive growth that would entail Philip Stein to be available in more than 100 outlets in 2016, making it acquirable in more locations than any other luxury watch brand in the region.
In addition, we conducted an abundance of market research in India, as I know the brand has immense potential there because of its unique technology. 2016 will the year we progress into India and capture market share through an exceedingly aggressive growth strategy.

Which segment of society is Philip Stein as a company targeting?
This is one of the USPs of Philip Stein. Again I reiterate that it is a wellbeing company as opposed to a mere luxury watch manufacturer. It is due to this very fact, that the prices of our watches range from US$ 600 to US$ 60,000. Therefore, the company caters to every segment of society in an attempt to promote wellbeing. The founders of Philip Stein (The Stein Family) believe that every segment of society should benefit form the technology regardless of what income bracket they belong to.
In addition, Philip Stein is among the most popular brands worn by the rich and famous. This is clearly illustrated through the numerous celebrities and popular figures that absolutely adore the brand and what we advocate. To name a few, Oprah Winfrey, Madonna, Michelle Obama, Rupert Murdoch, Samuel Jackson and Queen Noor are among the many who wear the brand and have benefitted from the technology.

How do you see UAE market as compared to other nations in the Middle East, is it more positive?
Definitely more positive, the UAE has been our first stepping-stone where we have established ourselves and the chief reason for this strategic move is because Dubai has marked itself as one of the finest shopping destinations on the planet. Tourists from the entire world indulge in the shopping extravaganza that Dubai offers, and the watch industry is one of largest here. Saudi Arabia is another strong market for our watches which is why Precious Times has already entered there last year.

In this age of smart devices, are you feeling any competition from the fast emerging smart watches sector?
I am very glad you have asked this question, and I must say that smart watches are more of a compliment to our brand as opposed to a competition. We are very happy with this movement of smart devices as they only validate our product.
All the smart devices in the market are predominantly just devices, which monitor your performance, whereby our product is the only product in the world that enhances your performance. I request everyone who has smart device to wear our sleep bracelet or our day bracelet and then measure his or her performance before and after wearing our product, which will only validate our claims.

What is the ‘USP’ of Philip Stein watches?
There are three crucial measures that help differentiate us from all the other watch manufacturers. The first is NFT that is simply incomparable. Wearable technology is a growing market but ours is the first product that induces an effect as opposed to just measuring it.
The second USP of Philip Stein is the dual-time-zone dial that has become a DNA for the brand. Majority of Philip Stein watches utilise a dual time dial that actually has two fully functioning watch mechanisms within a single dial so that the user can keep track of the time in multiple time zones. This has never been done by any other watch brand and makes Philip Stein recognisable on any wrist, seen at any distance.
The third feature of our watches that helps Philip Stein stand out is one that helps our customers keep up with fashion trends without having to constantly purchasing new luxury watches, which as you know, can be quite a costly activity is the straps that are interchangeable in a matter of seconds. There is a miniscule clasp at the back of the strap that helps the user change it at will, allowing them to match their evening outfit or even their mood. This has also turned out to be a dominant revenue generator for the company while pleasing our customers.

In one line, how would you like to define your brand?
I would like to put it like this…. ‘Any technology designed and developed for the betterment of mankind is nothing short of magic’. ‘Live in tune’.

Do you feel does it make sense to spend big amounts on luxurious watches that could actually fetch you an overseas
holiday?
As I mentioned earlier, yes we are a luxury brand, but we also have products such as bracelets starting at US$250 so that you can experience the technology. Furthermore, like the wise men said ‘no price is worth more than your wellbeing.’ So we are not selling watches, but instead, wellbeing.

How you look at the UAE market and how your business has evolved in the last few years in this country to be specific?

The UAE market has been very successful for us and we have grown manifolds in the last two years. Not only we have been successful in penetrating numerous reputable retail outlets but also been successful in corporate sales and private purchases whereby the products is bought in bulk.

Any plans to open your own flagship Philip Stein store?
Our first Philip Stein boutique in Dubai is due to open this month at the iconic Burj Al Arab hotel. This boutique will mark the brand with the prestige and status it is entitled to.

How well is the brand doing globally?
History has shown watch brands to take a long time to gain popularity and market share, however, even though Philip Stein is such a young brand, it has dominated numerous markets it entered due to its unique technology.
It is the most popular watch in the Caribbean and South East Asia. It also has a very big presence in North America, which is apparent with its Hollywood celebrity following. Philip Stein has also now become the official timepiece for the New York Yankees, the fourth most valuable sports team on the planet.
For this newly attained association, the brand has designed a Yankees watch, which has shown to be enormously admired.
What are your branding exercises to capture UAE market?
Yes, we are very well aware of that, which is why we are constantly advertising to enhance brand awareness. We are presently advertising heavily in cinemas, and have even created a Star Wars themed commercial.
We are in the mid of a huge radio campaign, which incorporates radio channels of all languages. Outdoor print is another medium that we aim to utilise for 2016 and expect it to be quite impactful. The company also constantly updates social media such as Facebook and Instagram and our followers continue to grow.

In UAE are you operating alone or you have collaborations with some other brand as well?
Currently we operate alone in the entire GCC as the company is family-owned.

Are you also offering customised watches?
Yes as a matter of fact we are coming up with our first customisable called the ‘Kudoke Gold Edition’. This is a limited edition watch with only 20 produced, and will have your name inscribed at the back. If available, you can also choose the piece number out of 20 which will be indicated in the back. It is a full skeleton made of 18k gold and has a number of precious stones such as diamonds, rubies. Of course you have to the pay price for this, which is US$59,500.

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