Technology

EBay Is Now Authenticating Watches Too

TechnologySep 06, 2018

EBay Is Now Authenticating Watches Too

The e-commerce auction site is enlisting third-party experts to verify the authenticity of thousands of timepieces.

San Jose, Calif.—EBay has announced a plan to combat counterfeits and increase consumer confidence in timepieces sold in its marketplace.

The company announced Wednesday that it’s expanding its eBay Authenticate program to include luxury watches. It originally launched the program last year for handbags.

For the program, a team of third-party professionals hired by eBay verifies the authenticity of a watch or a purse. The item then receives an “Authenticity Verified” label. 

In a news release, eBay said that close to 7,000 high-end watches sold on its site are now available with the label. The selection encompasses more than 30 brands including Rolex, Patek Philippe, Omega, Audemars Piguet, Breitling and Panerai. 

The models for sale, all from “top-rated” eBay vendors, are a mix of new, pre-owned and vintage watches. 

EBay said it will add models daily, and expects about 10,000 total authenticity-verified watches to be available in the coming weeks. 

James Hendy, senior director of eBay Authenticate, said: “EBay has the largest selection of luxury goods—from rare and designer handbags to fine wristwatches—and we know this community wants an added layer of trust and confidence when buying in these categories. We’re adding third-party authentication to this inventory because we know the importance buyers place on trust for high-value purchases.”

The company also rolled out its authentication program in Europe this month, expanding to markets like the United Kingdom and Germany. 

EBay said that in the United States, a watch is purchased on its website every five seconds. Overall, its most popular and valuable watch styles are the Rolex Submariner, Rolex Daytona and Rolex GMT Master-II. 

The San Jose, California-based online marketplace isn’t the only player in the secondhand market to amplify efforts to gain consumer confidence and weed out fakes.

Last month, TrueFacet launched its brand-certified program, in which pre-owned watched and jewelry are certified authentic by the brands that made them.

Ashley Davisis the senior editor, fashion at National Jeweler, covering all things related to design, style and trends.

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