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Rolex Ranks Number One in Watch Resale, According to The RealReal’s Luxury Consignment Report

But there was one big surprise from a brand that seems to be making a comeback.

Rolex GMT-Master II Ref. 126710 Courtesy of Rolex

One of the biggest players in the circular economy just released a report documenting how 2020 trends in luxury consignment are affecting the resale category in 2021—and one watch brand dominates the findings.

Say it with us: R-o-l-e-x. According to The RealReal, the world’s largest online marketplace for authenticated, consigned luxury goods, the Geneva maker is its No. 1 selling watch brand, and only strengthened its position in 2020. Rolex timepieces sell 1.1 times faster than they did a year ago, with certain models capturing resale values well above retail—such as the GMT-Master II “Batman,” which sold for an average of 170 percent of its original retail price in 2020, and a Rolex Sea-Dweller Special Edition Sommozzatori model that sold for $89,995, seven times its current retail value.

Rolex Sea-Dweller Special Edition Sommozzatori

Rolex Sea-Dweller Special Edition Sommozzatori  Courtesy of TheRealReal

Notably, resale values for the Rolex Explorer are up 15 percent year-over-year, while the average selling price of Rolex watches adorned with diamonds was up 44 percent in the second half of 2020.

Out of the top 10 luxury brands with the highest resale values on the site, Rolex and Patek Philippe ranked sixth and seventh, respectively, with the latter climbing three spots to claim its new spot on the list. (The French luxury brand Goyard ranked No. 1.)

Franck Muller Revolution 2 Tourbillon watch

Franck Muller Revolution 2 Tourbillon  Photo: Courtesy Franck Muller


Other watch trends worth noting include an apparent comeback for the Franck Muller brand, whose watches achieved the greatest average sale price growth on the site, jumping 63 percent year-over-year, and big leaps in resale value for both the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak (up 24 percent year-over-year) and the Cartier Tank (up 25 percent compared to a year ago).

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Perpetual Calendar

Audemars Piguet RO Perpetual Calendar  Courtesy of Audemars Piguet

Even at the very top of the market, watches sold quickly. A Patek Philippe Nautilus ref. 5722G, with a bezel of baguette diamonds, sold in five days for $117,995, while a baby blue-hued Richard Mille RM030 sold in 10 days for $107,495.

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