That Indians are price conscious is hardly a secret. By and large, Indians are conservative and look for high security and resale value when considering a high value purchase. However, when it comes to watches, there is an added dimension of social status too that becomes part of the purchase consideration.
Traditionally known to be fond of gold, Indians are seen to be opting more for steel, platinum and white gold. One reason for the changing preference could be the recent economic and political events. Since mid 2016, the Indian government has made Permanent Account Number (PAN) card identification mandatory for transactions above INR 2 lakh (approx. 3000 US dollars). This has had a direct impact on the luxury watch business. The demonetization of high value currency was another blow to luxury watch retailers, who were already reeling under the impact of the PAN Card rule.
One thing is important to see with Cartier; unlike most manufacturers, they always had a strong focus on watches that are shaped. Many manufacturers attempted to do this — particularly from the 1920s and 1930s, where Art-Deco also affected watchmaking and where we’ve seen several timepieces with rectangular or cushion-shaped watches — but few manufactures achieved to maintain this feature for a hallmark. In fact, when you examine the actual collections of brands that are older, there are mainly round watches, if we talk about apparel or sports watches. On the flip side, Cartier’s icons are all shaped-watches and current creations follow exactly the same concept.Of course, the curved shape is somehow natural, as a watch usually have hands attached to a central axis and rotating on a dial. However, Cartier’s strongest timepieces all share this notion of being different from the standard of this round timepiece. Take for example the Tank and its own rectangular case. Or the Santos, with a mixture of square and octagonal shapes. Recently, the brand introduced some more consensual watches, such as for instance the Ballon Bleu. But again, its not only a round instance. Same could be said for the Clé. Shapes are always a part of the design of a Cartier, with several different inspirations and fashion. But a Cartier is identifiable as so and the elegance of their watches is undeniable.