KUWAIT: Balmain and Behbehani Group hosted an event welcoming Balmain brand ambassador and Miss Switzerland Laetitia Guarino on Thursday at the TikTok showroom at the Avenues Mall. TikTok is an innovative concept that brings together all brands that Swiss watch lovers prefer, in a trendy, modern ambiance that transforms its clientele to a world of novelty. The showroom includes a collection of brands such as Tissot, Balmain, Hamilton, CK, Mido and Certina, for both genders and all age groups.
“I love Balmain watches and I am proud of being the brand ambassador of Balmain,” said Guarino. Ali Morad Behbehani, President, Morad Behbehani Group, Elias Ghosn, head of Balmain Swiss Watches, and other top officials were present at the event. “This is my first visit to Kuwait. I am very happy to be here although the weather is extremely hot. The people here are kind and frank,” Guarino told Kuwait Times.
Since 2005, Balmain has enhanced its corporate tradition with its sponsorship of the Miss Switzerland contest. This year’s Miss Swiss is the 22-year-old Guarino who is also a medical student, singer and model. “The Balmain brand was launched more than more 25 years ago and ever since its launch, Balmain is present in Kuwait in partnership with Behbehani. We have a fantastic partnership with Behbehani,” said Ghosn, who is responsible for worldwide sales and marketing of Balmain watches.
“Today, Balmain is a well-known brand with a strong female section. Mostly, we target women, although we make a few watches for male customers too,” Ghosn said. Key markets for Balmain watches are Switzerland, China, India, UAE, Saudi Arabia and Belgium.
“The Middle East is our major market, particularly Kuwait. From the beginning, the market response in Kuwait has been extremely good and positive. And we continue to maintain the growth in Kuwait,” he said. Ghosn said he visits the country four to five times a year and meets clients at the stores. “If you are close to the clients and produce beautiful watches catering to their needs, we will continue to maintain our growth,” Ghosn said.
“Balmain is a fashion brand with classical values. We are in the mid-segment and maintain a strong price bracket. As long as you stay strong in this segment by launching new collections and being close to the clients by knowing what kinds of watches they would like to wear, we will maintain our strong position in the market,” he said.
Ghosn said Balmain watches have become very popular in the Gulf region following the launch of DNA models featuring the Arabesque style, a style that probably would have originated in the region. The DNA models reflect the Pierre Balmain’s spirit, tradition and unique craftsmanship.
With over 75 years of expertise in retail, the Behbehani Group owns and manages a series of showrooms and stores exclusively for international watch brands as well as jewelry. Balmain watches are sold at nine locations alongside other brands. These showrooms are located in prestigious malls around Kuwait such as Salhiya, 360 Mall, Marina, Souq Sharq, Al-Kout, Laila Gallery, Al-Hamra Luxury Center, TikTok (Soku, The Avenues) and Behbehani Complex. Its newest location is The Gate Mall.
“The growth potential in Kuwait is very strong. So our strategy is to stay close to the clients, understand their needs and then come out with beautiful timepieces. Rather than being present all over the market, we choose to be present in good locations. And with the partnership with Behbehani, we hope that we can grow further,” Ghosn said. Rajsekhar, brand manager, was also present during the interview.
The event at the Avenues Mall commenced with a press gathering where the new Basil Balmain collection was revealed, encouraging shoppers and the media to try on the new collection. A competition was also announced during the event where the media were requested to take a picture with Miss Switzerland from a selfie box installed at TikTok Showroom for the occasion, which would upload the picture on the TikTok Facebook page. The picture that has the highest number of likes will be announced winner of a beautiful Balmain watch.
Balmain immerged in the exclusive world of Parisian high fashion founded by Pierre Balmain, the noted haute couture master. Balmain brings to time longstanding traditions of taste and elegance. Today, its distinctively original spirit drives a watch brand backed by a leading Swiss watchmaking group – the source of invaluable technical and marketing advantages benefiting Balmain timepieces.
By Sajeev K Peter