New e-commerce site Troverie is hoping to fill the “service gap” it sees in the market by offering a platform where retailers can sell their luxury watches and that provides a level of service fitting for the high-end manufacturers.
New York—A new e-commerce site has launched that wants to bring a better online shopping experience to luxury watch consumers.

Troverie is an omnichannel platform offering more than 800 new watches from some of the world’s best-known brands, with one important feature: The watches are fully authorized to be sold on the platform by the manufacturers.

CEO Fred Levin said the idea for the platform came from within the industry.

A group of jewelers approached Levin, the former CEO of The NPD Group’s luxury business, about finding a solution to the problem of how to best serve the luxury watch consumer online in a way that would be acceptable to both the brands and the retailers.

Levin said the retail model for high-end watches has been “out of step with the luxury watch consumer” for a while now. This is because said consumer wants three things: the opportunity to buy in an omnichannel environment; the ability to buy a watch with the backing of the manufacturer; and the opportunity to shop in a multi-brand environment.

Yet very few watch sales meet all those criteria, he said.

So Levin created Troverie to meet those needs.

“We are all about creating a service experience that is commensurate with the magnitude of a luxury watch exactly,” he said, adding that Troverie allows watch manufacturers, many of which don’t allow retailers to sell their products online, to do so in a controlled way.

As of now, Troverie sells watches from 16 brands, well-known names such as Blancpain, Breguet, Breitling, Longines, Movado, Omega, Raymond Weil, TAG Heuer and Ulysse Nardin. The company anticipates adding a few more brands this year, he told National Jeweler.

20181002 Fred Levin insertTroverie CEO Fred Levin
The watches on the site are pulled directly from the inventories of Troverie’s retail partner network, which currently includes more than 70 locations across the country, like +Bellusso in Las Vegas; Shreve & Co. in San Francisco; Borsheims in Omaha, Nebraska; and Hamilton Jewelers in Palm Beach, Florida, and Princeton, New Jersey.

The clicks-and-bricks model also means that the shopper can have her or his watch delivered directly to them or sent to a store for pick-up, as well as sizing and education on watch care.

Levin said this model is not only beneficial for consumers—providing them the assurance of buying from authorized retailers in a luxury setting—but also for the industry, allowing jewelers to sell their inventory online while also assuring the watch manufacturers that their products are being sold in an environment consistent with their brand image.

“The watch industry has been desperate for an omnichannel sales vehicle led by true experts to properly bridge the gap between online and in-store sales. Troverie is just what Breitling and our authorized retailers have needed,” Breitling Global CEO Georges Kern said in a press release. “With Troverie, consumers can rest assured that they are looking at an expertly curated collection of authorized watches and complete their purchase with ease and peace of mind, knowing the source is authentic.”

It makes sense, then, that a platform striving to give luxury watch brands the best in-store experience would also then allow those manufacturers to choose and invite retail partners to the Troverie network.

“We’re not choosing them,” Levin said. “We’re basically allowing luxury brands to invite any luxury jeweler across the country to work with us, provided that they comply with our policies and have the technical wherewithal to connect with us.”

He noted the importance of the latter because of the need for a point-of-sale system giving real-time inventory information so Troverie never sells product not available.
“The watch industry has been desperate for an omnichannel sales vehicle led by true experts to properly bridge the gap between online and in-store sales.” – Breitling Global CEO Georges Kern
With regards to the policies, Troverie is a “consumer-first” site, Levin said, which means there are a few rules not all jewelers will like, such as saying no to geographic exclusivity.

“That would not be in the best interest of making sure that a consumer is always getting impeccable service because if, for whatever reason, someone had an oligopoly or monopoly on an area then they would get the order (even if they provide poor service). That’s not how we operate.”

But for those retailers with which they partner, Troverie is offering not only the ability to sell luxury watches online, but also access to a whole new group of consumers they may not have been able to reach before, he said. 

“It’s hard for a regionally-based business to have the scale to rank high in the various Google search algorithms or to have the capital to invest online to really break out of the noise. We’re basically their marketing arm in a sense, in that we’re covering all of the customer acquisition costs.”

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