Ultimate Cars, Watches & Hi Fi S03 ep13 : Scott Devon, Devon Design Watches, [?????]
Interview with Scott Devon
The purpose of creating DEVON was to enable a customer to find “any product in any category to make their heart beat faster.” This goal translates into a uniquely engineered store that offers everything from minimalistic motorcycles complimented by intricate men’s timepieces, to futuristic TRON-inspired jewelry that can be paired with premium denim that hugs a woman’s curves like nothing else.
Devon: It’s actually a design lab that we started in Los Angeles is where we’re based. We’ve
designed everything from a super car that set a world record to motorcycles to obviously watches
now and also a denim and leather line as well.
Devon: And a lot of our stuff I think is really California inspired but also breakthrough engineering
and design is our two things that we work on most.
Devon: I collaborated with the designer Jason Wober and he was a Honda concept car designer.
When I was working on my super car project we were introduced by a mutual friend and that got
me into the watch business so it was just kind of by happenstance.
Devon: I’ve always been fascinated by design and architecture in particular and I paint, I sculpt,
but industrial design is really what we’re best known as and again that combination of engineering
technology and design and avant garde basis is really what we strive to do and we really think we
stand out by doing that.
Devon: I’m self taught, I actually have an MBA business background and my schooling is
traditional business. I studied at the University of London and also at Michegan State University.
Had extensive travel which reforms you when you’re younger and in college so kind of a
combination of a lot of things.
Devon: I built a modern house when I was 26 years old and that was very controversial, that was
kind of the first time I really put my design sensibility out there to be criticised.
Devon: It was really very much a modern statement, like a Rubik’s cube so it was 42 x 42 on every
edge but it had three dimensional wood and glass throughout the house and it actually really
difficult to live in, I ended up getting married and having kids and now I’m in a Georgian house.
The modern house isn’t necessarily the best way to raise kids.
Devon: It’s inspired by the industrial revolution and conveyor belts they were also inspired by
motorcycles so the belts that drive industrial revolution, the belts that drive modern production you
know a lot of what we have in this design is raw and open and honest, that’s unpalatable for a lot of
people because it’s scary a little bit but it also helps us stand out and that bold declaration of
independence is an American you know wish.
Devon: It’s something that we’ve globally patented and we developed the movement with an
aerospace company in California that did the engineering so we got a lot of credibility with the
watch world because these guys work for NASA. When we went to Singapore it was the first time
we introduced the watch. They were quite impressed that this American brand came out of
nowhere and went against traditional watchmaking in the Swiss world and was accepted by even
the critics we were nominated by Grand Prix de … and we’re the only American brand ever
nominated for that award.
Devon: We call it a hybrid, it’s electrical mechanical. If it was strictly mechanical the watch
would probably be $500,000. The electrical movement which powers the four motors within the
watch is the only way to do it and still have it somewhat affordably and I say that within reason
that it’s still a US$17,000 watch. We’re introducing the Tread 2, the second version of the model
right now which is going to be $10,000 so we’re trying to get it a little bit more accessible.
Devon: Jason Wober and I went to traditional watchmakers and they said we’re crazy, you can't
make it, so we had to go to the aerospace world. They said mechanically it would be almost
impossible, it’d take you know probably a million dollars just in research and development let
alone what it would have to cost. And about that time too because we had a car background you
know we were understanding what was going on with electrical mechanical world of engineering
so it didn’t bother us to go the electrical route to power the motors because that’s really the only
efficient way to do it but again that goes against a lot of traditional watchmaking.
Devon: It charges within six hours and it lasts for two weeks the lithium icon batteries that can
power an electric car are the same ones used in this so we have an inductive charger that you don’t
even plug in the watch it just sits on a cradle.
Devon: The first year I just our numbers and we were in the black and that’s considering a global
patent that cost a significant amount of money and also our R&D development over 2 ½ years and
a lot of people here, this is our second year at the show, you know they always wonder if you’re a
one hit wonder and you’re one and out and you know they were happy to see us back this year so
we’ve got longevity.
Devon: Yeah they’ve kind of put us with MB&F and Irwork and some of the more avant garde
watchmakers and we kind of like that, that comparison with those guys.
Devon: One of the editors of Revolution Watch Magazine was in Berlin at the Soho House and he
had our watch on and at the next table was Josh Dumel and Fergie of The Black Eyed Peas to
make a long story short, he gave the watch to Josh when Fergie said basically they’re arranging
how to get him a watch and he said just give him the damn watch, the guy gave him the watch and
then he wore it the next day when he was promoting Transformers on Regus Feldman’s show and
also on The Today Show and he actually used it in his next movie too. We all wanted Fergie that
said you know just give him the damn watch.
OFFICIAL WEBSITE: Scott Devon, Devon Design Watches, ???