Quantcast
Latest Stories

To grow big, first start small

TW Steel has grown from a four-piece collection to a brand that makes 500,000 watches yearly

By

TW STEEL CEO Jordy Cobelens during his recent visit to the country

To those who love watches, TW Steel is a brand known more for the size of its timepieces than anything else. Established in 2005 as a shared passion between the father-and-son tandem of Ton and Jordy Cobelens, it has grown from an initial four-model collection to a brand that manufactures 500,000 watches a year.

All of the pieces have faces measuring 44 mm and 48 mm that seem to swallow slimmer wrists. After all, the tagline of this family-owned Dutch brand reads: Big in oversized watches.

The younger Cobelens, the company’s CEO, was in the country recently for the opening of a new TW Steel store at Shangri-La Plaza and to introduce its latest collection and campaign. The Pilot collection is described as a dynamic, aeronautics-inspired line that reflects the brand’s image of ambition, success and boldness.

New campaign

To complement the collection’s launch, the contest “Pilot Your Life” was opened to all buyers of any TW Steel watch. The brand will grant one grand prize winner the opportunity to realize his or ambition—whether it be to finish schooling, start up a business or take a trip around the world. Participants should log on the Pilot Your Life microsite (www.twsteel.com/pilotyourlife) and fill out a form.

TW STEEL chronograph from the Pilot collection

Although there will be only one winner, the prize is one that can be likened to copping the golden ticket to enter Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory. The splashy cocktail launch was totally different, compared to the days when the brand was first starting out as Cobelens told this writer.

“I used to sell watches to my friends’ fathers and relatives. I would bring the watches to school and show them to my classmates, who would then show them to their fathers,” he recalled. The commission he earned from each sale was enough to keep him dressed in the latest fashion.

One time, a teacher confiscated the watches, thinking they were contraband but ended up returning them to the young entrepreneur.

Cobelens later became an accomplished DJ who put up his own label, JC Records, before he returned to the childhood passion he shared with his father Ton. With the elder Cobelens focusing on design for the watches, Jordy took charge of global brand expansion.

GRAPHIC black and white

“Our bigger-sized watches really took off but we’ve noticed that the market is starting to go for the smaller ones in our range, those measuring 40 to 45 mm. In Asia, the Philippines is our biggest market but maybe not for long, because we are opening 50 stores in China,” Cobelens said.

With the opening of the branch at Shangri-La Plaza, TW Steel is now available at the Podium, Lucerne Shangri-La and Cebu, Chronos, Swiss Gear and Wrist Pod boutiques nationwide.

The key to the brand’s success is a combination of design, quality and value for money. “TW Steel watches are able to hold their own against more established and costly Swiss brands,” said brand manager Catherine Porlaje in a statement.


Follow Us


Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Accessories , fashion , Lifestyle , TW Steel , watches



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  2. Noli Yamsuan, Cardinal Sin’s ‘official’ photographer: ‘I could smell the aftershave lotion of the Pope’
  3. Palawan favorite getaway of show biz celebrities
  4. Fashionistas flock to designer’s wedding
  5. Joe de Venecia visits the Queen Mother of Cambodia
  6. President Quezon was born here–and so was Philippine surfing
  7. A tale of two Priscillas: my mother Prissy and Chona Recto Kasten
  8. This is not just a farm
  9. ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  10. Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  1. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  2. Are your favorite malls open this Holy Week break?
  3. How Vitamin B can be a remedy for ‘manhid’ and neuropathy
  4. Sarah Geronimo and Matteo Giudicelli sing ‘All of Me’–and we all swoon
  5. 90 percent of Filipino households don’t practice proper toilet hygiene, sanitation
  6. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?
  7. ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  8. This is not just a farm
  9. 12 other things you can do at Pico de Loro Cove
  10. Marcos grandson to wed beautiful Rocha scion
  1. Mary Jean Lastimosa is new Miss Universe Philippines
  2. Did Angara ruin Pia Wurtzbach’s chances at Bb. Pilipinas?
  3. How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  4. Dominique–Gretchen and Tonyboy Cojuangco’s daughter–now an endorser
  5. Manila in shock over model Helena Belmonte’s death
  6. Vinegar test helpful vs cervical cancer
  7. From Jeannie to mom of suicide victim
  8. San Vicente beaches hidden but not for long
  9. Borgy and Georgina are back; others are off–again
  10. Why is the lifestyle set now afraid to wear jewelry–before Kim Henares?

News

  • Obama, family cause a small stir at Easter service
  • Estrada: Gigi Reyes won’t testify vs JPE
  • Ancient enigmatic carvings in danger of disappearing
  • Tagle: Hope comes with warning on Easter
  • New plant to boost supply of clean energy
  • Sports

  • Goodbye MGM, Las Vegas for Pacquiao?
  • Rain or Shine drops Ginebra in big hole
  • Ateneo whips CSB; Davao debuts with win over FEU
  • PH pug Hipolito Banal decisions Colombian in Aiba
  • Former Pacquiao sparmate Porter keeps IBF title
  • Lifestyle

  • Transitions and resurrection in the performing arts
  • ‘Archaeology tour’ of Cebu’s heritage of faith
  • Historic Fort Bonifacio tunnel converted into a septic tank
  • ‘Imports’ from London, and play of the year
  • Korean animation comes of age
  • Entertainment

  • Easter musings
  • Solenn in shorts
  • Unmerry mix of attention-calling moves on ‘Mini-Me’ TV tilts
  • Persistence pays off for The 1975
  • Special section in LA fest for Filipino films
  • Business

  • BDO seen keen on bidding for Cocobank
  • Bataan freeport investment pledges up 1,302%
  • Golden Week
  • Bourse to woo Cebu stock mart investors
  • Supper power
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Gigi’s home
  • Palace stonewalls on MRT inquiry
  • Couple of things too
  • There is plenty of water behind Wawa Dam
  • Triduum thoughts of a young boy
  • Global Nation

  • Search for Etihad passengers launched
  • Japan presents $57-B ‘dream plan’ to solve Metro congestion
  • Tim Tebow’s charity hospital in Davao seen to open in 7 months
  • OFW died of Mers-CoV in Saudi Arabia, says family
  • Aquino, Obama to tackle US pivot to Asia during state visit
    Marketplace