Long-time followers of Orient have probably come across the "World Stage Collection" name, mentioned alongside some of the brand's watches. We'll look into this collection today to understand it better.
The World Stage Collection was, in fact, anything but a cohesive lineup of models. Rather, it was a term attached to several vastly different releases over the years, roughly between 2007-2016.
The first watches advertised as part of the World Stage Collection were described as sporty and tough, as one would expect from a brand supporting the Subaru STI racing team. At the time, Orient's marketing referred to these models as being highly acclaimed overseas, and becoming especially popular in Europe.
World Stage models were equipped with automatic movements, probably perceived as better matching the mechanical nature of motorsports.
There were exceptions to the "rule of sportiness", however, with Orient presenting a number of World Stage models that were more sporty-elegant in nature. Such was this reference WV0531ER, for example.
In 2011 the World Stage Collection began to expand and become more diverse, with the introduction of quartz chronographs into the range. The first model to launch this expansion was the "STI collaboration model" – a quartz-powered model, but still very much in line with the styling of previous sporty World Stage models, and of course – equally racing-inspired.
A few more such STI-related models were released, and then in 2012 Orient added new quartz chronographs to the World Stage Collection that were no longer linked with motorsports.
By this time, the brand's marketing verbiage had changed to describe the collection as related to Orient's global expansion. The World Stage Collection was said to include two lines, one being mechanical and the other being quartz. The models were described as boasting a sophisticated design, combining technology and tradition, and again – becoming popular overseas.
Orient did not neglect its mechanical movements though. In 2011 for example, a respectable addition was made to the World Stage Collection with the addition of the "Caliber 469 40th Anniversary" model, celebrating Orient's long line of trusty 46-series movements.
Two versions of the Cal. 469 anniversary model were made: reference WV2371EM (pictured above) in black PVD, and ref. WV2381EM in raw steel.
Toward the end of the collection's life, it further expanded and seemed to cover most of Orient's watch segments. While some sporty models remained part of the collection, most new releases seemed a lot more dressy and elegant.
For instance, 2015 saw the release of this "World Stage Collection Sun & Moon Orient 65th Anniversary" model, reference WV0361ET.
Another trend that became very popular in the last 2-3 years of the World Stage collection, was the introduction of "his and hers" models. A few examples of these items were covered in the blog's review of Orient watch pairs.
Mentioned above are just a few examples of dozens of watches included with the collection. Among them were even a few M-Force models. It appears that throughout the near-decade of the collection, it has spanned many references that Orient found could be interesting to the global market.
The marketing definition of the collection has expanded to a fairly vague description of watches with "sustainable designs", and with a price range of 30,000 to 60,000 JPY (a fairly broad range that would cover much of Orient's portfolio).
And then, like all things vague, the "World Stage Collection" evaporated. Today, as Orient has become relatively well known to watch buyers around the world, there is probably no reason no set aside a collection of models intended to appeal to global markets. Other than JDM releases, any Orient watch could potentially be interesting to collectors, anywhere.
Photos were taken from official Orient catalogs and old sale ads.
Post a Comment