Home » Exclusive Interview with CEO of Purnell: Maurizio Mazzocchi

Exclusive Interview with CEO of Purnell: Maurizio Mazzocchi


Creativity isn’t something you can fake, and at Purnell, it comes naturally. Join us as we explore the creative world of Purnell, a brand that continues to bring innovation and craftsmanship to the forefront. Drawing inspiration from art and culture around the globe, their exceptional pieces are designed with the help of over 42 craftsmen and feature some of the rarest materials available, including Hancock Red sapphires. The team is committed to keeping traditional crafts alive. Each piece reflects Purnell’s high standards for excellence and performance. In this interview, we’ll learn more about their Ballon d’Or™ partnership, highest priced piece, and female-friendly offerings — offering a unique behind-the-scenes look into Purnell’s distinctive creativity!

How did it all start? 

Purnell has been established in Geneva since 2020, when we made our debut at Watches & Wonders that year. It really all began when I met Eric Coudray and saw the amazing work he had done with the Spherion, the World’s Fastest Triple-Axis Tourbillon. The mechanism is so mesmerizing and emotional, I was hypnotized.

 What is the direction of the brand in 2023?

 To continue to be the flagbearer of what I like to call “Hyper Horology”. We need to cast aside traditions of the past and move towards the future. We have several exciting projects in the works right now that we will be proud to present, including new collaborations. Purnell will keep making watches that assure performance in pure design, to deliver emotion with just one glance.

 Where are you today?

Purnell has a Showroom on Rue du Rhône in Geneva, Switzerland, as well as a flagship in Dubai Mall, and more coming soon!

Readymade is a fantastic brand – how did your partnership with them happen?

Readymade really exemplifies exclusivity within edgy fashion that we thought was very on par with Purnell. Yuta Hosokawa’s message to upcycle WWII fabrics into luxury streetwear, produced in limited quantities, is a way of taking something produced for war and turn it into an emotional message. It really speaks to our way of making watches as well—limited production in order to focus on exceptional quality to evoke an emotional response. We also share most of our final customers—clients wearing Readymade also wear Purnell.

 Could you tell us about the Ballon d’OrTM partnership? 

Football is the most popular sport in the world and the Ballon d’OrTM its most prestigious distinction. Our brand stands for the best, for the ultimate in the watch industry and we could only attach our name to the very best players, which are the Ballon d’OrTM winners. We share essential values with France Football and the Ballon d’OrTM: the taste for performance and high standards of excellence.

 Could you tell us about the challenges you see the watch industry having? 

To keep or even to increase the level of unique and talented craftsmen and craftsmanship, not only to keep traditional crafts alive but to create new techniques with new materials, to find good people and keep developing new techniques.

 What is your source for your creativity? 

I like to think of Purnell watches as mechanical art, so I take a lot of inspiration from contemporary art itself. It’s also why we like to decorate our showrooms with art pieces and collaborate with artists from designers to painters. But my main source of creativity comes from traveling around the world.

How long does it take to make one watch? 

From conception to the final product, it can take between 8 months. Over 42 crafts are involved in making 1 watch, and all done in Switzerland.

What is the rarest material you’ve had to work with so far? 

By far, the rarest was the red sapphire called Hancock Red. The Escape II Absolute Sapphire unique pieces are incredibly difficult to produce and therefore take more time and know-how.

What’s your most expensive piece till date? 

The Escape II Absolute Sapphire Hancock Red, which retails for 2 million Swiss Francs. This is due to the monobloc full sapphire case, which comes in a shade of “Hancock Red”, named after one of the most expensive red diamonds ever sold at auction in the 80s. It’s a shade of red that is impossible to replicate, a truly unique piece.

 Who are your ambassadors and friends of the brands so far? 

Most of our Brand Heroes are personal friends, such as Fabio Cannavaro, 2006 Ballon d’OrTM winner and to date the only defensive player to have won the award, and Marcell Jacobs, 100m Tokyo 2020 Olympic Champion, and R&B star Usher.

Photo: Getty Images

 Do you have any female friendly pieces?

There is one misconception perpetuated in media in particular that is not at all a commercial reality: the idea that the diameter of the watches (between 44mm and 48mm) is reserved for men. It’s interesting—Purnell watches have the distinction of attracting women as well as men, regardless of the watch’s size. I sincerely believe that complications and exceptional pieces go beyond typical notions of gender, in the same way that art does—so I like to think all our pieces are female friendly.

 

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