2022 has already set off like a rocket at CODE41! Following the Watch winder and the 2022 vintage X41, both of which met with clear success, we’ve got plenty of other surprises in store for you in the coming months: ANOMALY-T4, Mecascape, Tourbillon, and much more… You won’t know where to start!
Before we reveal more about these projects in due course, a little progress report on our development strategy for the months – and years – to come.
As you know, CODE41 is growing. Since 2016, the community has multiplied by a factor of 30, the team has gone from 2 to 25 people, and there are more and more projects every year. And it isn’t even close to stopping! So, to give us the means to fulfill our ambitions and continue to allow you the opportunity to experience this fabulous adventure in watch creation, we’re working on the option that’s best suited to achieving these objectives: fundraising.
Whether that be through “traditional” investors or crowdfunding, or even both, all options are on the table and we’re interested in your opinion!
What is fundraising?
Fundraising consists of seeking investors who will provide financing to a company with strong growth potential. These funds, granted in exchange for capital stock, give the company support in its growth and allow it to roll out an even more ambitious strategy. And ambition is one thing we’re not lacking in here at CODE41. All will be explained below.
Why are we raising funds?
It’s no longer a secret for you: the community is at the core of CODE41’s DNA. That’s why, in March, we launched a major survey to allow you to give your opinion on essential subjects: the pre-order system, shipping times, the nature of the messages you receive, and much more. A great number of you took part, allowing us to gather insightful information from your responses and, in particular, to reinforce our three development axes for the coming years.
1 | Offering shorter shipping times
The pre-order system has many advantages – it avoids remaining stock, the gray market and waste – but it also has a few downsides. Most importantly: the shipping times, as our watches are produced on demand and, even if we assure you that it’s worth the wait, many of you don’t have the patience to wait 6 to 10 months for the pleasure of wearing our models on your wrists. And we understand that.
So, dear community, we’ve listened to you and we want to offer much shorter shipping times in the near future. Our two main objectives starting from 2023 are as follows:
- Making some of our collections available for immediate delivery after ordering
- A maximum of 4 months waiting time between your order and the delivery of our innovative, highly-technical models with their various complications.
In order to do so, it will be necessary to order a reserve of products, the purchase of which will be enabled through fundraising.
Nothing will change, however, for the Creator Editions; faced with the many unknown factors in launching a new product, we’ll stick with a pre-order system with a production/delivery time of 6 to 10 months.
For all that, we’ll still be honoring our commitments: avoiding excess stock, fighting the gray market and waste. How? Mainly through the benefits provided by our DTC (Direct-to-Consumer) model. While the sales and customer relations of traditional watch brands are handled by their retailers, the DTC model allows brands to implement a direct sales channel with the consumer to convey its messages, products and offers.
This two-tier sales system allows us to minimize the risk of excess stock from new projects, while reducing the delivery time for existing collections. In fact, for the latter products, both analysis of the latest sales figures and our direct contact with our community allow us to make a precise estimate of the stock required for each model.
2 | Conquering the universe
Raising funds also allows us to explore new territory. While today we deliver to more than 130 countries worldwide, the vast majority of the CODE41 community is still currently European (more than 80%).
Through numerous exchanges with watch influencers from all over the world, we’ve realized that every culture has different expectations and their own codes when it comes to watches, which are not the same in the USA, Asia and the Middle East.
In the future, we want to be able to generate new CODE41 communites all over the world, which will spread locally, and offer them the chance to experience the adventure of the creation of a watch, as the only limits are the ones that we impose.
And guess what: we love pushing the boundaries! But building new CODE41 communites in other regions of the world represents a sizeable operational challenge, and will require a number of resources to succeed:
translation of our website into the local language, adoption of communication codes, etc…
video and marketing methods for telling our story in these uncharted territories
design and production professionals for fulfilling everyone’s dreams
All of this will generate substantial costs and, as you can imagine, fundraising will allow us to finance our world conquest.
3 | Recruiting new talent
As you can imagine, supporting an ambitious strategy of growth and development requires the recruitment of talent from complementary fields of expertise, all of them essential: product, design, communication, marketing, finance…
But how exactly is our talent currently distributed?
|Design and creation||18%|
|Finance and operations||12%|
|Composing hilarious emails||25%|
And recruiting the best candidates, just like building new communities, entails a significant cost, the financing of which might be supported through fundraising. The main advantage of this option? Going faster and further, while still maintaining the same objective: allowing as many as possible to experience the incredible adventure of watch creation.
So, the aim is simple: to continue expanding the dream team that works alongside you day after day on the development of CODE41, being joined by more enthusiasts who like to do things seriously without taking themselves too seriously.
Not had time to read everything? In a nutshell, fundraising will enable us to:
Build up stock for our collections
thus reducing delivery times
Create new communities all over the world
allowing everyone the chance to experience the adventure of watch creation, in accordance with their local watchmaking culture
Recruit new talent
who will be the keystone of this ambitious development strategy
Comments and suggestions
As always, if you have any ideas, remarks or questions, don’t hesitate to leave a comment below. We’ll be delighted to respond!