Counterfeit And Replica Watches: A Real Scourge In Watchmaking

For several years now, the price of luxury watches has exploded. Certain watches have more than doubled in a few years, and, since the beginning of the century, specific models may have seen their prices multiplied by 4 or 5, notably at Rolex, Omega, or Patek Philippe. So inevitably, this sharp rise in prices in second-hand watches caught the eye of counter-factors who wanted to take advantage of this new market with substantial economic potential!

Inventory Of Counterfeiting In Watchmaking

In strong development for 20 years now, counterfeiting has plagued the Swiss watchmaking industry by offering watches more or less close to the originals at unbeatable prices.

The Reasons For The Increase In Counterfeiting

It was from the 2000s that we saw a sharp increase in the counterfeit market in watchmaking. This is probably due to several reasons, so here are the main ones:

The price of new watches like the Rolex watch (นาฬิกา โรเล็กซ์ which is the term in Thai) has risen sharply, which has prompted part of the clientele, eager to have a beautiful watch, to turn to a counterfeit. Another party turned to the second-hand market, and counterfeiters followed suit.

  • The industrialization of Asia, particularly China, has created more and more players who can manufacture counterfeit watches at a low cost.
  • Increasingly qualitative products due to the appearance of increasingly sophisticated machine tools requiring less human know-how, and all at a lower cost.
  • The development of international tourism has made it easier to connect potential customers with counterfeit networks, especially in certain countries (Maghreb, Middle East, Southeast Asia, China, etc.).
  • The Internet and e-commerce, via platforms such as eBay, have greatly facilitated access to counterfeit watches, even when staying at home.

Counterfeiting will then affect contemporary watches, sold new and which can be released in a counterfeit version only a few months after their presentation.

But for some time now, counterfeit collector’s watches have also been found. Indeed, this market has become more and more attractive, with buyers seeking to invest in watches, counterfeiters then embarked on the manufacture of copies of old watches, or even in the design of fake watches that have never existed by taking components (case, movement, lugs, hands, dials, etc.) from different models to assemble them, or simply repainting certain watches and offering them for sale on the Internet. The buyer can therefore find himself paying for a fake watch or a counterfeit with false papers for several thousand, which is in reality worth nothing.