What brings you to Dubai? Many things keep bringing me back to Dubai. First of all I think Dubai is a very exciting and the most extraordinary city in the whole of the Middle East.

By Ben Swift (Contributor)

  • Follow us on
  • google-news
  • whatsapp
  • telegram

Published: Mon 21 Jun 2004, 2:11 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 12:50 AM

It is a city where the government offers futuristic projects, hi-tech communication, and fantastic business and trade opportunities. Coming to Dubai is always like coming to a second home.

The world of watches never stands still. In Basel we have launched a select number of very exciting additional Rado products to complete our range. And this is one of the reasons why I'm in Dubai: to introduce the latest member of our watch family.

How has Rado's performance been in the UAE in particular and the ME in general?

For the past 40 years Rado has been very active in this part of the world. We realised the potential of this market long time ago. I am proud to say that today we are one of the strongest brands in the Middle East. In the UAE in particular, we have a very vast network of retailers promoting our products.

How important is the Dubai market?

I think every international city in the world is important for an international brand, Dubai being no exception. Dubai is a very developed city and is on a par with the best in the world. Culturally, Dubai is a melting pot, it's like a mini world where people from around the world come together to live and work as a single cohesive unit. It would be a big mistake for a global brand not to be present here.

What prompted you to appoint Indian actress Lisa Ray as brand ambassador?

Rado was already present in India at the time when there was no watch import policy in India. We knew from experience that many Indian consumers were buying our watches during their stay, or visits, to the Middle East, UK, US, etc. Hence we saw it our duty to be present in India through a large services network to promote our watches and to offer service to those who owned them. We started a full-scale operation in India six years ago.

Soon we realised that for the promotion and image of our brand we needed somebody to be our face. Someone who could assist us with the launch of our new products, and to deal with the media for event marketing, an important marketing tool. Thus we collaborated with Lisa four years back. She is a very elegant lady and has everything that the brand stands for.

Rado has had a long and successful association with the world of tennis. What is the basis of this association? Why tennis?

That's correct. In fact, this year Rado is celebrating its ten successful years in tennis timekeeping. It all started 20 years back in Switzerland. We first tested it at the Swiss ATP tournament, and realised that tennis could be used as a useful tool through which to increasing brand awareness around the world. By being the official partners of the ATP and Davis Cup, and by being the timekeeper at more that 40 international tennis tournaments across the globe. We are concentrating on two of the four most important tennis tournaments. One is the Australian open and the other is the French Open.

Tell us more about your skin-friendly watches?

Many people in the world are suffering from various skin allergies. I think it is a real additional benefit for consumers if they wear a piece of jewellery or watch, which will not hurt the skin. Especially watches, as for many they are almost like part of their body, always strapped around the wrist. We want people to feel comfortable with their watches and that is why Rado watches are made of ceramic material, which is nickel-free and cause no allergies whatsoever.

For the first time as a partner, the brand has supported the 54th Berlin International Film Festival in February this year. What is this association about?

Rado has a very strong market presence in Germany and this film festival is important not only for Berlin and the film industry there, but also for the entire world of cinema. And similar to our involvement in tennis, we started this association on a test basis last year to find out what possibilities lay there and how we could exploit the Festival. This too proved to be a very successful exercise, and now we are working to make this process grow.

Rado has timed the longest ever game in the history of Tennis - 6 hours and 35 minutes - at this year's French Open. How does it feel to be part of that historic moment?

You are following us very closely (smiles). It is one of the things you cannot predict. It's the emotional part of the sport. It comes when least expected. When the match got over and we looked at our corner clock, we were pleasantly surprised. There was a big discussion among the management, the players and everyone present at the Rolland Garros about it. And soon the whole world was talking about it.

Those who work hard in the fields of sponsoring, design and market presence do receive once in a while a little flower of success. Being part of the longest tennis match ever in history was one of those little flowers.

More news from