This was announced a few weeks ago and the progress of the project is now visible before our eyes at number 1 rue de la Paix: the future Lange & Söhne boutique in Paris will open its doors next fall. This is an important event for the Saxon factory. Since the closure of the rue Saint-Honoré boutique in May 2021, Lange & Söhne seemed to be in retreat on the French market. A logical feeling because the closure was part of a general context where the brand was accelerating its distribution strategy in the world through its own boutiques. In fact, many “boutique-only” watches were no longer accessible in France and all of this led indirectly to a lesser need for a sustained media presence at the local level. The situation was becoming less and less acceptable for French customers who needed to have a place of reference, if only for reasons of simplifying after-sales service management.
The opening in a few months is therefore excellent news. For Lange & Söhne first of all, which will be able to resume its strategy of conquest in an important city from the point of view of its activity and the number of visitors from all over the world. The store, given its size (the site was previously occupied by Poiray and then hosted Serapian’s pop-up store for several months) and its address, will become a considerable vector of image. Moreover, the Lange & Söhne website already communicates on the address and the current decoration of the palisades, pending the work, already plays this role of communication medium a few meters from Place Vendôme.
The opening is also welcome for customers. The absence of a real physical relay had become an obstacle in the context of a purchase decision. Doubts about Lange & Söhne’s true commitment to France are lifted and customers can once again feel confidence. Of course, there remains the question of the availability of key parts in the future.
The boutique project as presented on the Lange & Söhne website:
The challenge for Lange & Söhne, through this boutique, is to rebalance its turnover, which we clearly feel, through the messages conveyed by the brand, that it is essentially driven by activity in Asia and the UNITED STATES. A European manufacture must be ambitious in Europe. The risk is that there is a mismatch between the brand’s strategy in terms of products (increasingly complex and expensive watches produced in limited series such as this year’s Odysseus Chronograph) and the aspirations of a local European and French customers whose purchasing power has been greatly reduced in recent months. We remain confident on this point. I have the feeling that Lange & Söhne will end up rethinking its entry level which, in my opinion, needs an update. The fact remains that the international clientele will indeed be present, which will ensure a volume of activity at the store.
In any case, I hope that the shop will be able to start its activity before October 24th. Indeed, this date corresponds to the day of the official presentation of the brand’s rebirth collection in 1994. It has since been a privileged date for the presentation of a novelty and I think it would be a very good idea for a future piece can be unveiled in the Paris boutique. In the meantime, let the work be done and the team put together. I am personally delighted with this upcoming opening and I am very impatient to discover this new place.