You may recall news last year about the Swatch Group SA and WEKO’s review of whether there’s room to manoeuvre (increase supply) within the 2013 agreement to phase out movement supply by their subsidiary ETA SA.
Reuters have reported that Swiss Competition Commission WEKO may launch an investigation into the vexed issue of spare parts supply within the watch industry, the result of complaints from independent repair centres and customers alike.
Any such investigation would not be without effect, increasing pressure on not just the Swatch Group SA but on other major industry players to make watch parts available to watch repairers that are not officially accredited by them.
The Reuters article reports WEKO Deputy Director Patrik Ducrey as saying “We received complaints from independent watch repairers who no longer had access to parts, but also from customers who were unhappy they could not get their watch repaired wherever they wanted”, “We are doing preliminary checks at the moment to see if there are indications that watchmakers unlawfully limit the access to parts for independent watch repairers. By this autumn, we should be able to decide whether to open an investigation”.