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Wednesday August 28, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Wednesday August 28, 2013 MYT 7:48:41 AM
by nevash nairphotos by ahmad shahrin
The company's Malaysian Facebook page is the most popular among all its pages, with 75,000 fans.
THIS YEAR has been a very busy for Oris SA of Switzerland. In February, the brand launched its first “island boutique” in Malaysia at 1 Utama Shopping Centre in Petaling Jaya.
The boutique is the first kiosk-styled boutique designed to provide convenience for customers and visitors to experience the wide range of Oris watches available in the Malaysian market.
And in March, the luxury watch celebrated its 11th season of partnership with the Williams F1 team, making it the longest standing partner in Williams F1’s history.
Oris began their partnership with Williams in 2003, and after 10 seasons, the watchmaker renewed and upgraded its sponsorship of the team ahead of the 2013 FIA Formula One World Championship.
For the Formula One season this year, the Oris logo will be featured on the cars’ front wing and cockpit shoulder.
Oris will also continue with its presence on the driver and mechanic overalls, drivers’ gloves and helmets.
In June, after a six year break and for the first time under the auspice of Oris, the Ambri Fly-In event for aviation enthusiasts made a sensational comeback. The Fly-In took place in the airfield of Ambri, just south of the Gotthard Pass, Switzerland, with more than 150 airplanes and 6,000 visitors in attendance.
One dial at a time
The company is looking to close out the year with a bang, especially in Malaysia, its best performing market in the region.
Oris regional manager Karim Gerber said Malaysia currently has 70 sales points and by 2016 there will be six more single-brand outlets.
“We have a long standing relationship with Malaysians. We have been in this market for more than 20 years and we want to keep going,” said Gerber.
Oris Malaysia recorded 15% growth this year compared to the same period last year and Gerber said this can be attributed to the many activities the brand has carried out.
“What sets us apart from our competitors is our involvement in social media. Oris Malaysia has some 75,000 fans on Facebook, making it the biggest fanbase in the world among all Oris pages,” revealed Gerber.
Social media has also helped the brand to connect with the younger generation and slowly reduce the average age of its customer.
“We are building a relationship. This relationship will last for years to come. Oris is about real watches for real people,” he said.
The brand has also been aggressive in creating awareness and exposure by carrying out road shows and press events.
Making it Malaysian
During the launch of its island boutique, the brand recognised the achievements of Paralympians Hasihin Sanawi and Mohammad Ziyad Zolkefli, singer Shila Amzah, and motorcycle racer Zulfahmi Khairuddin.
“The achievements of our Paralympians Hasihin Sanawi and Mohammad Ziyad Zolkefli, singer Shila Amzah, and Moto3 GP racer Zulfahmi Khairuddin, should be recognised and celebrated, as they exude the very culture and qualities of Oris, where precision, timing, skill and dedication to achieve the best, is at the core. Their success serves to inspire Malaysians,” Oris Malaysia general manager Raymond Tan said.
The watch presentation marks Oris’ second celebration with famous Malaysians. Hasihin, Ziyad, Shila and Zulfahmi, joined Olympians Pandelela Rinong and Azizulhasni Awang, together with internationally renowned violinist Dennis Lau, who were each presented with an Oris watch for their achievements in September last year.
This has helped the brand gain interest from Malaysians and further establish its presence in the market.
Founded by Paul Cattin and Georges Christian in 1904, Oris has been making watches in Switzerland for over 100 years.
Its watches are purely mechanical and are marked by their distinctive design as well as the red rotor, the symbol of Oris mechanical watches.
Named after a brook and valley close to Hölstein in Switzerland; it has its origins in the Celtish “Aurisa” and Roman “Orusz” meaning watercourse.
Despite its aviation series watches contributing to 35% of sales, Oris is also known for its dive series, which is gaining popularity in Malaysia.
At the forefront of mechanical watch innovation, Oris has harnessed its knowledge, expertise and craftsmanship to produce the first divers watch that measures depth by allowing water to enter the timepiece.
Oris product engineers were the first to apply the Boyle-Mariotte Law into the top crystal of a watch by milling a small channel into the side of a sapphire crystal.
The channel runs anticlockwise round the sapphire glass, stopping between one and two o’clock.
At 12 o’clock, an inlet leads to this channel. The special sapphire crystal is about 50% thicker than an average watch top crystal, domed and anti-reflection coated on both sides.
Revolutionising the world of professional diving, where safety and protection are paramount, Oris’ engineers applied the Boyle Mariotte Law to the patented Oris Aquis Depth Gauge.
“There has been a growing demand for this even from non-divers. We worked with professionals, in line with our tagline line, to develop this series,” said Gerber.
Paying tribute to the vital work of the Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia, Oris also introduced the Oris Royal Flying Doctor (RFDS) Limited Edition this year.
Limited to 2,000 pieces, the timepiece recognises the excellent work of the RFDS, who provide aero-medical and primary healthcare across Australia.
Starting with a single flight in 1928, the RFDS is now the most comprehensive aero-medical service in the world.
Operating a fleet of 61 aircraft, 21 aeromedical bases and five remote primary health care facilities, the RFDS also delivers more than 14,000 health clinics in communities across Australia every year.
In close collaboration with RFDS, Oris has developed the Royal Flying Doctor Service Limited Edition watch.
The functional orange pulsation scale on the dial of the watch aids doctors in reading the pulse of patients.
The stainless steel screw-in crown at 4 o’clock controls the time settings, while the screw-in crown at 2 o’clock – marked with the silhouette of Australia – operates the inside turning dial ring for the second time zone.
This dial ring shows time zone changes of just half an hour, as occurs in Australia. The watch case is made of double domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating for enhanced readability and with a case back including a mineral crystal.
Oris, with over 20 years of history in Malaysia, is looking to further enhance its brand presence with some unique timepieces and designs.
In the saturated luxury watch market here, Oris should be commended for holding its own for more than two decades.
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