Shah Rukh Khan switches from Omega to TAG Heuer

NEW DELHI: The Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy (LVMH) group has signed Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan as the first Indian brand ambassador for its 143-year old TAG Heuer brand. Earlier, Shah Rukh was the brand ambassador for LVMH rival Swatch group's Omega watches.

The actor, who has signed a three-year contract with Tag Heuer, will feature in TAG Heuer's advertising campaigns, public relations, product development and merchandising. The announcement was made by LVMH Watch and Jewelry Pvt. Ltd. president and chief executive officer Jean Christophe Babin.

The LVMH group, which is into second year of its operations in the country, has taken the initiative for an emotional association with the consumer.

“When TAG Heuer was launched here last year, we had given a quadruple promise to the Indian customer. The decision to sign Shah Rukh is a step towards strengthening our ties with customers here through `Indianness’ and Indian nuances. But still, we will be maintaining our international standards whether its our product offering, service or brand endorser quality,” said LVMH watch and jewelry AsiaPac regional managing director Ravi Thakran.

“TAG Heuer stands for ruggedness, pure performance, integrity and competitive drive. His personality (Shah Rukh) almost mirrors the brand values such as undying passion, his eternal search for perfection and precision,” Thakran, who was earlier with Swatch group added.

For the Bollywood actor, who was earlier endorsing Omega, TAG Heuer is just not another endorsement but a dream he had cherished for years.

“As far as TAG Heuer is concerned there is no competition. Though I have a collection of TAG Heuer on my own, it’s an honour to be associated with such a brand, which I always wanted to wear,” said Khan, who stated that passion is the common link between himself and the brand.

Khan will appear in a new print campaign, which has been scheduled to break shortly. “Shah Rukh will be seen in the TAG Heuer corporate campaign `What are you made of?’ to be launched in the next couple of days,” said Thakran, who also added that the group is also planning to use Khan for its campaigns in other Asian countries such as Malaysia.

On the advertising strategy, “This year, the bulk of our budget will be for print medium. We are planning a television commercial next year. Besides advertising, Shah Rukh will also be involved in promotional events,” added Thakran, who stated that the advertising and promotional budget would be in `multi-crores’.

LVMH, which allotted its media account to Starcom last year, will continue to work with the same agency while the creative work will be sourced from Europe, done by TBWA.

The quadruple promises, which Thakran mentioned were related to pricing of TAG Heuer watches in India being similar to those in other markets such as Dubai, Singapore or Switzerland, complete variety of watches being made available in India, launching all the latest products simultaneously and opening up of after sales service as part of its business model.

On the distribution front, Thakran added the company is present in 14 cities through 34 outlets and it intends to open four more in cities in the near future.

TAG Heuer’s list of brand ambassadors includes Ayrton Senna, David Coulthard, Tiger Woods, Kimi Raikonnen and Marion Jones among the others.

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