For the first time ever, Cartier customers will be able to purchase one of the brand’s latest releases online before it reaches retailers and Cartier boutiques around the globe. The brand recently announced the surprising collaboration with online retail giant Net-a-Porter, offering the newly redesigned and long-awaited Cartier Panthère watch through a web-based pop-up shop for the entire month of May. A small handful of luxury watch brands have been starting to embrace digital retail platforms (though with much trepidation), and we strongly suspect this boundary-pushing approach could have a significant impact on how more of the major players look at e-commerce.
Without a doubt, this was an incredibly smart play on the part of Cartier. The iconic Panthère watch collection had a very respectable run from 1983 until the early 2000s when it was discontinued, and with the ever-rising demand for traditionally sized women’s watches (the new Panthère is available in 22 mm and 27 mm case sizes), there is little doubt the collection will be in high demand. On the first day of sales, both medium-size diamond-set-bezel Panthère models were listed as sold out, and considering the pop-up will carry on until May 31, we don’t suspect many (if any) of the remaining models will stay in stock by the end of the month. Cartier is now the fourth Richemont watchmaker to partner with the e-commerce powerhouse (IWC and Piaget are also available through Mr. Porter), and with the early success with this latest campaign, we suspect we’ll be seeing more of the group’s brands migrating to similar platforms in the coming months and years. (net-a-porter.com)