Ricardo Guadalupe, Hublot CEO: “Ferrari and football continue to be our most important partnerships”
Interview conducted during the Finali Mondiali which took place on the world-famous Monza racetrack from 2 to 4 November 2018
Alain Carrier: In the past, Panerai and Girard-Perregaux created Ferrari-stamped timepieces yet which had but little success. But, for 6 years now, Hublot’s partnership with Ferrari has been experiencing unprecedented success. What has made the difference?
Ricardo Guadalupe: Several parameters. One of them is that, at Hublot, we haven’t limited ourselves to watches. We initiated this partnership across all levels and all fields where Ferrari has a foothold. As such, we’re with them for Formula 1. We’re also present in dealerships around the world. Each dealership has a Hublot clock or a display case containing a Hublot product. We’re also present on all Ferrari-organized events. And that’s over 200 a year! From the 60-year celebrations of the brand in the USA to the 30-year ones in China. Besides this, we work with a great many Ferrari clubs too.
And, we also work hand-in-hand with the teams on the products. All the designs were made with the Ferrari team and supervised by Flavio Manzoni. In the end, we’ve succeeded where the others failed: by selling Hublot – Ferrari watches to Ferrari car owners.
All these parameters have ensured our collaboration is a great success. And this is why our partnership has been renewed and continues.
Alain Carrier: Techframe is an exclusive timepiece with a tourbillon fashioned in carbon, titanium and gold. Are you going to release this model without the tourbillon to target the general public?
Ricardo Guadalupe: It’s a product which we worked on to commemorate Ferrari’s 70th anniversary and it’s a watch which is not part of any of our collections. For a watchmaking brand, it’s vital to pursue its iconic lines. For us, our two cornerstones continue to be Big Bang and Classic Fusion. Big Bang is a really typical product with a strong identity; Classic Fusion is a bit more “sensible” and corresponds more so to the Hublot entry point. To embark on a third line would be rather complicated.
Techframe is a one-off exercise which experienced commercial success in spite of the fact it’s incredibly high-end with its tourbillon chronograph.
Next year will be the 90th anniversary of Scuderia Ferrari and, of course, the Formula 1 team. We’re planning on presenting something totally new.
One shots with really unique models as regards style and design continue to interest us for the future.
Alain Carrier: Between football and automobile, which sector is most attractive for Hublot?
Ricardo Guadalupe: Ah, it’s difficult to say but with Ferrari we can see things concretely because we create Ferrari models and we see what we sell. Whereas with football, we can’t have the same idea because this sport is used more so to promote the brand. During the World Cup this year in Russia, we had twenty minutes’ visibility through the sign the fourth official brandished during player changeover and during the announcement of extra play. Twenty minutes’ visibility, it’s enormous because we’re reaching billions of people. If even only one person out there knows that Hublot is a watch brand, it’s still really positive.
Of course not everyone can afford to own a Hublot but here the approach is totally different. The aim is to make Hublot known throughout the world and to make it a brand that allows you to dream. We talk to young people through football. If some become successful in their lives, then maybe in five or ten years, they may choose to buy a Hublot. Football is a vector for communication focusing on prestige, perfect for targeting potential customers.
In the end, for Hublot, both worlds, football and automobile, complement each other really well.
Alain Carrier: Are you approached by other sports to become their sponsor?
Ricardo Guadalupe: Of course! We’re frequently approached but we’ve made choices. We pursue our route with our two cornerstones, football and Ferrari, where we make almost two thirds of our sponsoring investments. However, we have forged relationships in other spheres which we enjoy working with like music through Depeche Mode and the piano virtuoso Lang Lang as well as with Nicky Jam, a modern-day reggaeton icon in the United States and in Latin America. Hublot has also partnerships in the world of art and lifestyle with collaborations with Richard Orlinski, Berluti and Italia Independente. However, Ferrari and football continue to be our most important partnerships.
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