Plenty of watch and jewelry brands are giving back during the Covid-19 pandemic—some brands like Bulgari, Graff and Tiffany & Co. have even donated $1 million each to the causes aiding the frontlines of the crisis—but Parmigiani’s plan might be the most inventive yet. Putting the power to give back in the client’s hands, the Swiss watchmaker’s new “Helping Heroes” initiative aims to help healthcare and non-profit institutions across the country by allowing customers to pledge a tax-free donation of their choice to any of their local hospitals or non-profits with the entire amount applied to the purchase of a Parmigiani timepiece (only select Parmigiani pieces are on offer for the program, some of which are seen here). Those that donate the full retail price of the watch they want will have their selection put on hold for 24 hours until the proof of donation is received, at which point the watch will be delivered to the client. If a smaller amount is given, a credit towards a watch will be applied for six months. The entry-level price for a Parmigiani watch is about $9,000.
In an effort to promote its retailers, Parmigiani is asking clients to work with their nearest authorized Parmigiani dealer to make the donation. Eligible timepieces will be determined by the retailer. The program is only valid in the U.S. through April 30, 2020.
“The Helping Heroes program is a small way we can encourage individuals to give back to our healthcare workers and stand together,” said Gustavo Calzadilla, president of Parmigiani Fleurier Americas said in an official statement. “It is our hope that the program will sway those who were considering making a donation to act on it.”
But that’s not all—Parmigiani is also helping its retail partners, who have been dealing with business losses due to store closures, with a new e-commerce platform in North America. Patek Philippe also recently allowed its retailers to begin selling its product on digital verticals for the first time this year, but Parmigiani is going one step further by creating its own e-commerce platform which allows consumers to select their local authorized dealer for the purchase at checkout. That means that Parmigiani will facilitate the shipment so that boutique owners can continue to operate while at home. It also helps retailers without digital sites to continue to make sales during this challenging time. Even if the client forgets to select a retailer at checkout, Parmigiani will select the closest nearby authorized boutique for credit of the sale.
Parmigiani is also supporting boutique employees by increasing their sales commissions. Clients will also get benefits, including a complimentary strap and complimentary maintenance service on the third and sixth year of ownership.
Benefiting everyone involved from the brand, the client, the retailer and the sales staff, this is the most comprehensive and thoughtful giving back initiative we’ve seen. Parmigiani might be a niche brand, a “little guy” in comparison to the conglomerate-backed brands donating in the millions, but its commitment to the current cause is next level.