There is no other way to start this article than by saying that to me it is deplorable that some of nature’s finest creatures are nearing extinction at the hands of humans. I applaud all efforts to save them.
This week at LVMH Watch Week 2023 in Singapore, Hublot unveiled a watch that has real meaning — a watch with a cause that can stir your heart. In today’s world, it is important for watch brands to stand behind something as they grow. For me, the relationship Hublot has nurtured for the past four years with SORAI – Save Our Rhino African India – organization touches several nerves. These mighty beasts are being threatened with extinction because of one main invader: Humans.
The poaching of rhinoceros and the plundering thereof has led to heartbreaking stories and images. It has raised awareness about the beauty of these animals as well as of their vulnerability at man’s hands – unfortunately not enough awareness.
It was in 2019 that Hublot partnered with SORAI, the organization founded by Hublot brand ambassador and former cricket star Kevin Pietersen, which works to save the rhinos from extinction from poaching. Since then, Hublot has created several renditions of watches whose sales would benefit SORAI.
The newest (also the third): the 44mm Hublot Big Bang Unico SORAI watch, created in a limited edition of 100 pieces. Crafted in micro-blasted and polished gray ceramic, and recalling the colors of the sunset on the African plains, the watch boasts a stunning bright orange Rhinoceros applique in the subsidiary dial at 9:00.
The numbers and markers are in hues of sunset orange and rich purple that light up the night sky – the most dangerous time for Rhinos facing poachers. Even the additional black rubber strap is imprinted with an orange and purple camouflage motif. (The watch is also sold with a gray fabric strap). According to Hublot, the colors of the sunset are designed to evoke a sense of hope.
The skeletonized watch is powered by the MHUB1280 Unico 2 Manufacture self-winding movement with flyback chronograph. The 354-part caliber offers 72 hours of power reserve. The sapphire case back is treated with an antireflective coating (as is the crystal on the front of the watch) and engraved with the SORAI logo. A portion of the proceeds of the sale of every watch goes to SORAI. The funds raised go toward state-of-the-art monitoring technologies, adding more surveillance teams, and helping injured rhinos. The Hublot Big Bang SORAI watch retails for $24,100.
“If purchasing a watch can buy time, then it is a small gesture with huge implications,” says Ricardo Guadalupe, CEO of Hublot. “Saving the rhino is an urgent matter for both the planet and future generations.”
(This article by Roberta Naas first appeared on Forbes.com)