HYT, the ultra-niche Swiss company known for watches that tell time via capillaries filled with fluid, has filed for bankruptcy. According to a letter published on the Watchuseek forum and written by the chairman, Patrick Berdoz, and COO, Michel Nieto, HYT was not able to raise the capital it needed, “due to a blockage from institutional shareholders.” Nieto will now take the reins as CEO in an effort to bring it back from the brink of collapse.
The business was founded in 2012 and run by Gregory Dourde, who is stepping aside from his role as CEO to focus on working with Preciflex, which was previously a minority client of HYT, serving as an R&D leg for the company’s fluid timekeeping endeavors. According to Swiss watch-trade publication, Business Montres, Preciflex will now be focusing more on the use of micro-controlled fluids in medical solutions (clearly, a far more lucrative and wide-reaching endeavour).
After-sales services for current owners of HYT models will be run by Preciflex. Unfortunately, and rather ironically for those looking to unload their fluid timekeeper, the market is not very liquid. Currently, prices on the secondary market are trading under retail. The HYT H0, of which there are only 15 in existence worldwide, originally retailed for US$39,000 (S$52,531) in 2017, but is now selling for US$28,950 (S$38,994) on Watchbox, while the HYT H1 Black retailed for US$59,000 (S$79,469) in 2012 and is now selling for just over US$44,000 (S$59,265) in the Titanium DLC version on Jomashop.