Posted on Thursday 31 January 2019 by Ulster Business

Hans web

What does your company do and what role do you play?
My company is making watches and I founded it. My primary tasks, apart from running the company on a day-to-day basis, are product development and design as well as dealing with our ambassadors and other partners.

How did the business start and how has it grown?
The business started with a basic idea of selling a high performance range of watches at an amazing price and thereby providing almost unprecedented value for money. Bundled with a strong story, so it becomes about more than just the watch and what it looks like.

In less than a year we now have customers all around the world.

What is your background?
I spent most of my career in the IT industry, mainly in product and concept development and sales, rather than hardcore coding and designing. Watches were always a passion and Enoksen Watch Company is the realisation of the dream of turning a hobby into a living.

What do you do differently from your competition and what are your strengths?
The watch industry is dominated by companies selling products with almost insane mark-ups. We have taken a different approach and by running a truly bootstrapped operation we can sell our watches at more reasonable prices without sacrificing quality or customer experience.

Who are your main customers?
Interestingly our customer base is people with expensive watches. I would say that 90% of our customers already own watches from Rolex, Omega, Breitling, Cartier and IWC. A typical watch from Enoksen costs less than a service on Rolex. There is a clear trend at the moment where value for money and discretion is more important than status.

Do you have a target in mind in terms of where you want the business to grow?
I do. We have some clear revenue and market goals. More importantly we want to build a business that contributes to solving some of the problems the world is facing. We have teamed up with one of my environmental heroes Alexandra Cousteau and we are deeply involved in her new Oceans 2050 foundation.

What challenges have you faced?
I think we have the same challenges as everyone else, but we are fairly well funded and we have access to pretty much everything we need. From a product point of view we are sometimes faced with disbelief when customers experience our quality, and they are trying to understand how we can make such high quality products at such a low price.

Who most inspires you?
I have a number of business heroes that I take inspiration from, but mostly I am in awe of those who are driven by something more than money. Businesses that are built by people who are in it for life, or at least act as if they are, are a pleasure to look at and to learn from. Rolex-founder Hans Wilsdorf is a true inspiration. And Rolex, despite its worldwide dominance in the luxury watch market is a non-profit organisation. How cool is that?

Where do you see yourself in the next few years?
We are an online company selling a product, which really needs to be experienced first hand. We are trying to address that by creating a team of people, who are based in the 100 most significant cities around the world. Another goal is to develop 100% sustainable products.

So in summary we are working to have feet on the ground everywhere, and fulfilling orders from our HQ in Belfast.


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