Submersible Goldtech™ OroCarbo
Interview with Federica Carpano, Panerai R&D Director
1. GoldtechTM or CarbotechTM? Which one do you prefer?
With Panerai GoldtechTM we have enhanced the gold alloy, pushing the boundaries to achieve perfection in terms of durability, beauty (with a unique red tone exclusive to Panerai) and hardness. And with CarbotechTM, we have explored a brand new solution and developed a unique material that offers unequalled quality and performance to our clients, while having a unique signature and character. Maybe I’d say I prefer CarbotechTM because its development took us to a new frontier, which is what I like most.
2. What inspires your research of novelties and innovations?
We can be inspired by different “activators” all around us. We are very much inspired, for instance, by solutions used in high-tech sailing boats, in medical devices, in aerospace or in automobiles. But we are also always alert to observing nature and biomimicry, and to following important achievements in leading-edge research. Sometimes inspiration can come from something distant, sometimes it comes by exploring watchmaking fundamentals. One thing is certain, we need to have a good “why” when we start new research and the answer is always focused on client satisfaction.
3. Why is the Panerai Submersible Goldtech™ Orocarbo a must-have for watch collectors?
Because it is the first Panerai Goldtech™ watch that also features Carbotech. What a lovely marriage! And this model has a unique character — sporty and elegant at the same time.
4. Why is the Panerai Submersible Goldtech™ Orocarbo an essential?
Because its unique design is immediately recognizable.
5. How do you decide which materials to combine in one watch?
That’s the incredible work of our designers. They use Panerai materials in the best ways, matching them perfectly to create terrific products. Thank you, guys!
6. Please tell us how the “Laboratorio di Idee” works (ideas, workflow, meetings, etc.)
We have a very close collaboration with the Design and Product teams based in Milan. Everyone has a role. They are the creative people. We are the geeks! But both sides are open-minded. Sometimes it’s up to us to suggest creative solutions, and they are very likely to challenge us technically. From this fantastic mix comes the richness of the “Laboratorio di Idee”.
7. Do you take international trends into consideration? Or does the magic happen entirely within the Laboratorio di idee?
We’re lucky at Panerai. We have an amazing brand and an incredibly attractive product. Our history is so rich that we have plenty of opportunity to be inspired by the brand itself. Nevertheless, we actually do absorb trends from the outside world, but not necessarily from the watchmaking industry. I would say our inspiration comes from luxury brands in general.
8. How does it feel when you develop a brand new material?
It starts out as a thrilling adventure, then you go through phases of enthusiasm: reflection, questioning, hope. And, always, you go through tough times because true innovation is never quick or easy. But then there is satisfaction, pride and a sense of work done well and seriously. There is a lot of gratitude because it is always the result of a lot of teamwork.
9. What’s more important: high performance or the final aesthetic of a watch?
Both. Neither has value without the other.
10. Is there a material you haven’t used yet but want to?
Yes. But it comes from the future and we need to develop it first!
11. Is there a time you’ve encountered unexpected difficulty in managing a project and gave up on a challenge?
Managing an innovation team is not only about finding breakthrough solutions. It is also being able to meet a client’s needs, managing costs and timing. I don’t like to give up but sometimes I have, when I understood that the effort wasn’t worth it and continuing would not be in Panerai’s interest. If something was too expensive or too risky or too far-out, in general. It is always a learning process and it allows us to start the next challenge with new awareness.
12. What’s your biggest achievement among Panerai innovations?
We are now working on very ambitious projects that are coming soon. I can’t name them right now but I am proud of the challenges we have taken on.
13. Your favorite Panerai watch
The next one!
14. We are in 2050: how do you see the ultimate Panerai creation?
We have iconic designs. You’ll never get tired of your Panerai because it is refined and perfectly balanced. I imagine a future that respects the Panerai heritage but is full of innovative technical solutions and futuristic materials too. The aim will always be to give to the clients new gratification, always renewing and enhancing the experience of owning a Panerai.